People are bashing SOY hardcore now, misunderstanding it as a mysoginistic "sex in the club" song. You once made an awesome post describing how this song is actually the opposite, explaining it in depth… can you repost it? The hate is making me sad when it's SO untrue and apparently people aren't getting the true meaning of the song!?
Hey, thanks for the kind words about my Shape of You post. It’s [here] (I’ll reblog it too). But keep in mind it was written as a celebration of that song and not as an argument against people who hate Ed simply because he’s… a successful white man… and I think if someone is bashing a song that they clearly haven’t listened to closely enough to understand the actual meaning of it, then they’re not likely to respond positively to (or even read) the post. I totally understand wanting to educate people who have no idea what they’re talking about, but if someone just wants to bitch for bitching’s sake, no amount of reasonable discussion of the subject is going to change their minds.
I wish people weren’t so shitty.
That being said, I’m all in favor of everyone’s right to voice an opinion on their own accounts. Even if they’re just whining and putting themselves in the way of other people’s enjoyment of social media. So in the interest of adding my own voice to the uproar, there are three points I’d like to make about the Grammys posts I’ve been seeing:
1. Folks keep complaining about the Recording Academy and saying that they ought to be blamed for awarding a Grammy to a musician the stans don’t personally like – as though if there were enough complaints, new members of the Recording Academy could somehow be elected and would vote in a way that more accurately reflects what the people think constitutes “good music.” I think these people must not realize who the Recording Academy is. The Recording Academy is the music industry itself. It is composed of singers, songwriters, producers, engineers, players of instruments. They all have the opportunity to vote in their own specialized fields and for the “big four” awards. Your fave is literally a member of the Recording Academy and had a chance to vote. The musicians you love – and the ones you don’t love – and the people who make every song you consume are the ones who vote for the awards. There’s not an election process. They are not there to represent you or your interests. And it’s not some panel of twelve old white men who don’t listen to the radio. These are thousands of professional musicians who use their personal judgment and experience as musical experts to choose what they think is the best music of the past year based on whatever criteria they think is the most important. That’s how it works. If you don’t like who they choose, become a musician and you can be one of the thousands of voting members of the Academy. That is the only way anyone will represent you there. Otherwise, the awards are simply at the mercy of the opinions of people who are involved in the actual making of music, and you can whine about it as much as you want, but you’re just screaming into the void. These awards are not for you. The whole point of the Grammys is for musicians to be recognized by their peers in the industry, not by fans. There are other awards that fans can vote in.
2. Everyone has struggles. Everyone. Those struggles vary from person to person and can differ in severity and whether they are private or public. Sometimes when musicians experience painful things, those experiences manifest in their songs, which is perfectly fine and good. But when you judge a song, you judge the quality of the song based on elements within the song, not on the experience of the artist. An artist can go through something hard and write a beautiful song – and many have, including lots of this year’s Grammy nominees – but an artist can just as easily go through something hard and write a song that isn’t the best song in their genre that year according to other musicians, and that is perfectly fine too. An artist can also write a song about a common or positive experience that’s not super deep and it still be a really frickin good song. It’s true that just because something is the most popular that doesn’t always mean it’s the best, but by the same token, just because something is sad or empowering or came from a heartfelt place, that doesn’t always mean it’s the best either. The hardest worker doesn’t always create the best thing, the most generous person doesn’t always create the best thing, the person who has struggled the most doesn’t always create the best thing. None of that stuff matters when you’re judging the Thing. The Thing must stand alone. If there were a Grammy category for Person We Like the Most or Feel Sorriest For then maybe the life experiences of the artists would have some bearing on the outcome. Otherwise it’s a moot point.
3. Just because you didn’t get your way doesn’t mean you’ve been mistreated. Real injustices definitely exist all over the place, but sometimes a vote is just a vote, and at least four people in almost every Grammy category are going to have fewer votes than the fifth person. That doesn’t make it unfair. In fact, there is no fairer way to decide on a winner of this type of award.
If I had a fourth point, it would be that I’m incredibly proud of Ed Sheeran. He’s an amazing singer and songwriter and put out a great album last year. 🙂
Thank you for the message and for allowing me the opportunity to share my thoughts.