Recording artist Pink may very well be one of the sexiest, sassiest and most talented singers on the radio today, but beyond all of the hottie hype, I’m a fan of Pink’s guts.
Pink’s lyrics go far beyond the content and quality of other talented singers in the music industry today; they question the cultures and politics of today’s society and speak to issues facing today’s youth and the rest of the world. In the 2006 song “Stupid Girls,” Pink belts out the lyrics: “What happened to the dream of the girl president? She’s dancin’ in the video next to 50 Cent!” The 2001 tune “Respect” encourages women and girls to do just that–RESPECT… themselves, that is!
Dozens of Pink’s songs question social norms and lambast the idiosyncrasies of the way in which women view themselves, making the raising of awareness “cool” for today’s youth. Yet the most gutsy move Pink has made to date was the release of 2007’s “Dear Mr. President,” a scathing lyrical indictment of the corruption, hypocrisy and sheer stupidity of President George W. Bush. In this song, Pink states: “How can you say no child is left behind? We’re not dumb and we’re not blind. They’re all sitting in your cells, while you pave the road to hell.” The entire song condemns Bush on both a political and moral level and screams to the world the hypocrisies of his life and work, which, according to Pink, “came a long way from whiskey and cocaine.”
But the brilliant lyrics are just the beginning; the true mark of courage was in Pink’s release of the song to radio airwaves. In an age where mainstream radio, like all other mainstream media sources, is controlled by corporate sponsors whose funding more often than not comes from corporate conglomerates who support the agenda of the conservative right, Pink dared to go where few recording artists have gone since the 1960’s. She took a great risk, both professionally and financially, not only by making a nation-wide release of an extremely controversial song, but by spending the investment capital to purchase airwave time to ensure that the song would be heard on major radio stations all throughout the United States.
In today’s world, where the mainstream radio is saturated with mindless bubblegum and/or violent and misogynistic lyrics that, ironically, scarcely generate the level of criticism that radio stations received for playing “Dear Mr. President,” Pink’s move was both bold and valiant.
With the undeniable amount of influence that music has on today’s youth, the industry desperately needs more artists with the guts to use their art as a true means of expression, tackling issues that matter and sending the message to the youth that it’s “cool” to think.
So I raise my glass to Pink. Here’s hoping for many more years of Pink’s incredible and challenging music, and airwave time for her and other like-minded artists to break into the mainstream.