Sunday, 27 February 2011

Green eyed monster

Authenticity is a rare beast in the world of pop music. Sometimes, it's young pop tarts trying to maintain their virginal image whilst grinding suggestively in a way that would make Elizabeth Berkeley blush. Alternatively, it's kids who've spent a few years in the Brits academy, only to emerge with an R&B swagger straight out of South Central Camberley.

The latest graduate from the school of hard rocks is Jessie J, a one-time West End child prodigy who's now topping the charts singing about the "ka-ching ka-ching, b-bling, b-bling". Having written hits for singers like Rihanna, Justin Timberlake, Christina Aguilera and Miley Cyrus, she's clearly got a decent pop pedigree, but even she finds it hard to figure out what kind of recording artist she wants to be.

With her star firmly in the ascendent, she's been comparing herself to a number of her contemporaries and finding that she's coming up short. Although she's confident in her musical ability, she's concerned that she doesn't have the cover girl image of stars like Cheryl Cole and Rihanna - "I try not to worry about my looks, but they're so beautiful it's hard to compete."

She's also got Lady Gaga in her sights, adding that the star's pret-a-porterhouse stylings have made things difficult for the artists that follow in her footsteps. She told OK! "She's literally made normal artists and music boring, which bothers me. It annoys me when people say Leona Lewis is boring. No, she's not. She's got a sick voice and being normal is cool."

Given how worried she is about her music industry competition, perhaps she should focus on a star who's going to be easier to emulate. Someone like Beth Ditto, who recently told reporters that on a recent night out, she managed to throw up and piss herself. It might not generate as much publicity as when she was rumoured to be a supporter of the Illuminati, but all it takes is a couple of bottles of Merrydown. And that's the kind of accomplishment you just can't put a price tag on.

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