The growing trend of music for the preteen generation in recent years, and especially in recent months, has increasingly been placed under tremendous scrutiny. Justin Bieber’s and Miley Cyrus’ rising popularity resulted in them becoming some of America’s most hated individuals.
Justin Bieber alone accounts for five of the top 10 most disliked videos on YouTube. Rebecca Black takes the honor for the most disliked video of all time. The most perplexing aspects of all of this aren’t the individuals themselves but the inexplicable harsh animosity the public assigns to them.
The almost violent hatred of Bieber is perhaps the strangest. The small Canadian actually garners legitimate respect within the music world, collaborating with established artists such as Usher, Ludacris, Kanye West and even underground legend of the famous Wu-Tang Clan, Raekwon. Even underground celebrities such as Toro Y Moi and Tyler, The Creator, have expressed desires to work with Bieber.
Despite this, droves of people are still eager to bring bodily harm to the kid. In a contest for his “My World Tour,” which intended to send Bieber to the country with the most votes, more than 600,000 votes were cast to send him to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. Although, Bieber, unfaithful to his word, didn’t play there.
Outside of Bieber, the fervor of hatred toward young artists is as contagious and widespread as the plague, or perhaps a fever. On paper, it makes no sense. Imagine a 22-year-old caustically belittling a preteen you know. It’s actually pretty cool, if you’re a sociopath. It’s pretty safe to say that at the very least, an institutionalized hatred of a subset of young teenagers is a little appalling. Regardless, it happens anyway.
For some reason, the masses like to think normal pop music is above preteen pop, yet the hierarchy
A prime example of this is Bieber’s “Baby” compared to Adele’s critically praised hit, “Rolling In The Deep.” The songs contain the same subject: loves lost that had tremendous potential and that deeply affected both artists. The Jaime xx version of “Rolling In The Deep,” even features a rap portion by Childish Gambino that parallels Ludacris’ verse in “Baby.” Both serve the identical function of providing a detailed anecdote of a love lost. Bieber’s age, relative to Adele’s, doesn’t matter. Often people will want to label the youth as being naive, but some of the worst, most memorable pain comes from your youth before you’re emotionally jaded. All things considered, it becomes more a question of which work do you arbitrarily assign value and quality to.
A relatively current major source of these teen artists is Ark Music Factory, a record label whose business model is centered around enticing parents to pay anywhere from $2,000 to $4,000, and in return, Ark promotes and produces songs and music videos for their children. The fact that the company labels itself as a factory is highly indicative of its motives to produce products and not pieces of art.
This is quite all right because the demographic they are appealing to doesn’t require art. Children have no need for complexly structured songs with meanings that they can’t even fathom, let alone relate to. While prodigies are noticed in math and science, youth extremely proficient in humanities-related subjects are few and far apart because they aren’t born that way. Instead, these skills must be developed. Most children simply don’t understand the cultural and literary value of the works of John Steinbeck and comparable authors. The reason Black sings about the glory of Friday and Jenna Rose of jeans is because that’s what 12- and 13-year-olds understand.
There’s a good reason Disney Channel’s original movies don’t win Academy Awards, but for some reason, they aren’t slashed to pieces by hordes of malicious individuals. So, why don’t we all make fun of Dr. Seuss books? Those are really dumb and childish. If Bieber and his peers aren’t necessarily for the masses, then why is he hated by said masses?