Black Eyed Peas
'Time of my life' (Dirty Bit)
Being in my mid-30's I remember the time when 'Dirty Dancing' was released in the late 80's. Everyday I took the bus back home from school, all the seniors were always listening to 'The time of my life', affirming the myth of sex, romance and companionship. Those were the days;-)
Nonetheless, this week for the first time I heard the BEP's version of 'Time of my life', and I thought - Yes, it's time to relive my junior high ecstasy - until I heard Fergie's timid voice trying to carry the tune. Oih! At some point each artist needs to own up that having the chops, the schooling for great(er) art/popart definitely does assist in perpetuating a quality audio brand. Point in case Streisand, Celine, Bette, Alicia, Mariah and even Madonna. If her holiness Madonna can get some chops by receiving instruction in vocal techniques, then dammit so can Fergie.
Though Madonna and Fergie both make use of digital transformative techniques in terms of their respective vocal mixes, the artist's vowel production largely remains authentic - hence my criticism of Fergie's vocal technique (with specific reference to the 'true' and 'you' sounds in 'Time of my life').
The BEP's music video is uniquely digitized, as are certain aspects of Fergie and Will.I.am's lead vocals. Will.I.am's vocal contribution fits in very well with the Dirty Bit mix, with his earthy, granular rich resonance. Yet I feel the consistent reliance on vocoder effect is taking Cher's initial 'Believe' idea just a bit too far. An effect is just that, an effect. Should it become Will.I.am's only audio brand feature?
I believe in world-class music education, experience and in a continued pursuit of excellence, whether you're a music student just starting off, a music producer breaking into the industry or an award-winning pop artist. Hopefully at some point the BEPs will do too.