Heather DeLuca - 95.1 WAYV

Friday, November 30, 2007

Knowels Knows Better

First came Bon Jovi, than Sheryl Crow, than Jessica Simpson. But SAY IT ISN'T SO!!!--Beyonce is venturing into the world of country music for her next disc???
Bon Jovi "crossed-over" into country thanks to a remix version of their song "Who Says You Can't Go Home" which featured an added vocal from Jennifer Nettles from music group Sugarland. While the version paled in comparison to the track featuring just Jon Bon Jovi (due to unmatched pitch by Nettles), the country music world ATE IT UP. The song charted well and opened up Bon Jovi's already huge fan base to a whole new audience. Enter lightbulb-moment for JBJ--record an ENTIRE country album. They did (pairing with Leann Rimes and hit songwriters Dan Huff and Big and Rich)--Lost Highway--and it worked. The album--which left the bands' fans to wonder if the supergroup had "jumped the shark" ala Fonzie--has actually been well received by critics and country music fans alike. Not SUCH a stretch to make the cross coming from rock roots.

Jessica Simpson has struggled to say the least to sell CD's in spite of her huge voice. After moving from the Christian to secular industry in the late 90's, Jess dabbled in country with her "These Boots Are Made for Walking" cover for the Dukes of Hazzard motion pic she starred in. While the song didn't get much radio airplay it became a minor hit. So whats a buxom blonde with Dallas roots and one of the greatest set of pipes in music to do? Put back on the cowboy boots and get into the studio. Jessica will also pair with Huff and Big and Rich (who've helped to pen megahits for Faith Hill, Tim McGraw and Carrie Underwood) for an album set to get underway in January. My guess is that since country is into etheral vocal goddesses (Faith, Carrie, Taylor Swift) Jessica will finally find the CD-selling niche her career has been missing.

Finally I get to my point (sorry). At the American Music Awards 2 weeks ago I almost lost my dinner listening to Sugarland BUTCHER (and thats putting it nicely) Beyonce's #1 smash "Irreplaceable". I couldn't text my friends to type "are you watching this nightmare?" fast enough. The southern twang RUINED the tough attitude needed to pull off the songs lyrics. But things went from bad to WORSE when Beyonce actually joined Sugar's lead singer (yet again Jennifer Nettles, get your own songs lady) on stage to sing the last half of the tune. Poor Nettles couldn't keep up with Beyonce's vocal runs and the result was WRETCHED. "Mismatched" doesn't begin to do the performance justice.
Now comes word from the industry that Beyonce (albeit raised in Texas as well) was really using that AMA duet as a springboard for a foray into country. Am I the only person who thinks this doesn't make sense? Its about commerciality right? Sheryl Crow, yeah (her next effort Detours is country-laced). Beyonce, uh uh. I can't see this working but don't take my word for it. I also said Kelly Clarkson's Breakaway disc would only be good for use as a coaster after "Since U Been Gone". So what do I know? This revelation just really leaves me scratching my head.


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