There’s an awful lot written about “25″, the new record by Adele that’s been four years in the making. Most of everything written reads like one very long press release cranked out by a relentless marketing machine intent on ensuring that this record results in massive sales, numerous Grammys, and a Sainthood for Mother Adele.
There’s been a great deal of chatter recently about this term known as “A&R” (Artists and Repertoire), its importance, especially to a major music company, and the rise and influence of the A&R person, who, in many ways, has become the Rock Star executive within the often dated structure of a music company.
And so you’ve now gone from choosing songs for your wedding to deciding what songs should be played when you’re laid to rest, and as Lennon sang, “Everybody loves you when you’re six feet in the ground”. That was from “Nobody Knows You When You’re Down And Out” off his tremendously underrated- and cathartic- Walls And Bridges album recorded during his “Lost Weekend” and Yoko-less Yer Blues period, where he also sang the truism, “Everybody’s hustling for a buck and a dime, I scratch your back and you knife mine”. As was always the case with John Lennon, he didn’t hold back- his songs being the only therapy he needed before meeting the one-eyed witch doctor on the other side.
It’s called the “Not Invented Here Syndrome”, and Adam Levine admitting to Howard Stern that after all the bells and whistles have been silenced, celebrity judges have disappeared along with nanu second “mentoring sessions”, and the “good television” of The Voice are gone, how contestants are handed over to music companies where they get lost in the shuffle, won’t be a surprise to anyone who has followed these well choreographed television singing competitions.
Suffering from Adeleosiphilitis? Tired to watch one more spoof of the dear lady’s “Hello”, the uniquely titled first track off her upcoming record “25″ that’s been over four years in the making? Bored shitless reading that she and Damon Albarn couldn’t write together, and that he fobbed her off as being “insecure” and “middle of the road”? Can anyone really work with Damon Albarn who seems to need constant reassuring that everything he produces is brilliant when much is absolute crap?
Horse racing and the world of music might have made strange bedfellows back in the day when the twain could never meet, but, not these days, where we’re seeing once insular industries with those running them having equally insular thinking waking up to the fact that for businesses to grow, it’s all about increasing one’s customer base, and how, why, where and when partnerships, and thinking outside of the square, must come into play. It’s all part of that often used, but rarely understood word called “marketing”. And in the horse racing industry, marketing is all too often about talking to and reassuring itself that everything is alright. The similarities with the music industry in denial is eerily similar.
Though he sings that she never calls him on his cellphone anymore, what’s interesting in the video for Hotline Bling is that there’s no cellphone in sight. That flip phone is probably with- hello- Adele.
What the video lacks in cellphones, it makes up for in booty. There’s booty all over the place opening with what looks like bootylicious babes manning the phones of a sex chat line.