We can’t help it. We know Rebecca Black will be nothing but a footnote a few weeks from now, but this week she was definitely the girl with the most cake. If anyone ever symbolized what is going wrong in the music business these days, it’s the sweet 13-year old who did nothing more than want to follow a dream to become a singer. After a record company charges her mom $2000 to help their daughter (not the way it usually works, by the way), Black records a song called “Friday,” an innocuous, simplistic, non-memorable, mundane song that a 6-year old could probably write, a posts a video that looks like it cost $1.99 on YouTube. It takes off, many because people want to vilify it as the worst song ever. Black ends up on a talk show circuit and with 16 million page views. We all should be so bad.
1) Rebecca Black (not ranked): The 13-year old’s “Friday” causes an internet sensation, earning “worst song ever” designation and a staggering 16 million YouTube page views. The product of Ark Music Factory, a label that charges people (i.e. parents) $2000 to help them is probably printing money in a basement now. Let’s see which major labels get into a bidding war to sign her.
2) L.A. Reid (not ranked): He steps down from his post as chairman of Island Def Jam to be the first officially announced judge for Simon Cowell’s U.S. version of “The X Factor.” The Y factor we bet will be a new executive position at Sony Music.
3) Barry Weiss (not ranked): Mere hours after Reid’s resignation, Universal Music Group names Weiss his successor, as well as gives him oversight over Universal Motown Republic Group. What a Weiss Guy.
4) Katy Perry (not ranked): She and “E.T.” go where no artist has ever gone before by scoring four No. 1s on Billboard’s Digital Songs chart from a single album, “Teenage Dream.” No need for “E.T.” to phone home, we already have him on our iPod.
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5) Taylor Swift (not ranked): The pop/country superstar adds animated movie star to her canon. She signs up this week to voice Audrey in the 3D film of Dr. Suess’s “The Lorax,” along with Zac Efron and Danny DeVito.
6) Ke$ha (not ranked): Not only has she landed another Top 10 in her short career with the unicorn-adorned “Blow,” but she charts her first Top 10 hit on the Billboard 200 as a songwriter for someone else with Britney Spears’ “Till the World Ends.” Is this a sign of the apocalypse?
7) Lupe Fiasco (not ranked): The rapper scores his first No. 1 on the Billboard 200 this week as “LASERS” tops the chart with opening week sales of 204,000. That’s the second highest sales tally of the week behind Adele.
8) SXSW (No. 7): The 25th annual music fest takes over Austin. My big discovery of the week? 95% of my Facebook friends are there. I get to enjoy it from the comfort of my computer.
9) “Glee” (not ranked): The show delivers a one-two punch. After charting more than 100 cover songs on iTunes, the Fox high school musical’s first two original songs, “Loser Like Me” and “Get It Right” claim the No. 1 and No. 2 spots on iTunes. Doesn’t sound like a loser to us, it sounds more like, duh, winning.
10) Ferlin Husky (not ranked): The country great, who died this week at 85, scored 41 Top 40 country hits from 1953 to 1975, including the classic “Wings of a Dove.” May they carry him home now.
Everything: Katy Perry
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