Overrated?

Brokey is unmoved by the hype surrounding Susan Boyle:

everybody all shocked that homegirl can hold a note.  why?  is it cause she’s a bit dumpy, is in desperate need of brow work, and says she’s never been kissed?  how insulting!  ‘you look like a troll!  i didnt think you’d be able to do anything but grunt and hiss into the microphone!’ the nerve!  gimmie a break.  if this song was sung by a contestant during Miss America’s talent portion, id be like, ‘…eh.’

Basically. This seems like one of those weird ‘cultural’ moments where people pat themselves on the back for being open-minded, like the fashion world does all the time to Beth Ditto. But good for Susan Boyle.

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11 thoughts on “Overrated?

  1. pearl451 April 17, 2009 at 1:39 pm Reply

    i agree, wholeheartedly. when i first HEARD about this story on NPR, i thought, ok, well he has a good voice. then i watched the video on youtube and didn’t know what the big deal was. i also think that because of crap reality tv like american idol and autotoned pop music, most people are unable to tell if someone actually has outstanding vocal abilities

  2. Ron April 17, 2009 at 1:44 pm Reply

    Reality shows are presumed to only uncover “talent” in the form of people who are suitable for magazine airbrushing.

  3. Steve April 17, 2009 at 3:39 pm Reply

    When she hit the big notes in the middle I was impressed…that kinda singing is technically difficult with this kinda song..

    and besides the story is cute…whatever..

    it aint like she the next superstar…

    its just a nice story.

    • quadmoniker April 17, 2009 at 5:35 pm Reply

      Yeah, I agree. I think it’s overblown, but I’ll happily admit to getting misty-eyed. I don’t think the emotion and hoopla was all just because people were surprised an unattractive person can sing. I think they were ready to make fun of her, like so many are made fun of on these shows, and then they heard her sing and felt like assholes. I swear the non-Simon dude got teary-eyed, too. And I think a lot of it can be attributed to how pretty the song is. And so appropriate. I dreamed a dream in time gone by? Come on. Try not to cry.

      Unfortunately, the asshole realization lasted only a moment. People are being bigger, more condescending assholes now.

  4. ladyfresshh April 17, 2009 at 3:41 pm Reply

    i think it’s because there is so much horrible singing out there.

    My eyes watered i’m always happy for links to good singing.

  5. blackink12 April 17, 2009 at 4:12 pm Reply

    Yeah, I’m co-signing with Steve: it was a nice story and all but I wasn’t blown away by her ability.

    And “American Idol” isn’t necessarily about rewarding the most talented vocalist either. They’re trying to find people who can be stars, which as we all know, has as much to do with the packaging as the voice.

    Either way, I’m sure Ms. Boyle is gonna come out of this with some buzz and maybe a record deal. Good for her.

  6. Jon April 17, 2009 at 6:26 pm Reply

    I think it’s mostly a matter of people having had incredibly low expectations for her to have had any talent, based solely on her appearance, which to the shallow audience for this show, at home and in person, is essentially the criteria with which to appraise someone’s value, and also having had incredibly high expectations for something so ear-splittingly bad that they could then make it a pleasurable experience by laughing and mocking her, that when she did turn out to be vocally talented, they all felt so guilty for their previous judgment, that it was perceived as a brilliant performance when juxtaposed with their assumption. She sings well, very well, but I think they hype is that it’s moving to see someone being at first mistreated, only to succeed, especially such an endearing figure.

    • quadmoniker April 17, 2009 at 7:39 pm Reply

      Jon, I think you’re right. It was the briefly passing self-realization and guilt.

  7. corlake April 17, 2009 at 7:15 pm Reply

    i was waiting for someone to write this. thank you. i agree wholeheartedly. way overrated.

  8. bitchphd April 17, 2009 at 9:40 pm Reply

    Disagreed. First of all, overrated compared to what? Compared to your average person with no formal musical training and no access to a recording studio?

    Second, despite the nastiness of the judges (“everyone laughed at you”), she actually seemed to me to get a pretty good round of applause even before she started singing. Yeah, the camera panned to the girl rolling her eyes, but ime, Brits rather admire and appreciate their dumpy middle-aged mum-types in a way we Americans don’t. The laughter to me sounded mostly appreciative of her chutzpah rather than hostile.

    Plus, voice aside, it’s just damn charming to see a woman, of middle age and average appearance, with that sort of confidence and humor refusing to back down or self-denigrate. And again, the humor and confidence of middle-aged women has seemed to me a lot more common and valued in the UK than here. That kind of persona compels affection, regardless of whether or not her voice surprised people.

    • quadmoniker April 17, 2009 at 11:24 pm Reply

      BPhD: Totally agree. I do think they were going to make fun of her, but I also think her personality was as much about what people were responding to as anything else. But did you see the clip of her on the CBS morning show? They were such condescending assholes.

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