So in the event that you have been living under a Pop Music rock this summer, the big hit right now is Katy Perry’s “I Kissed a Girl (and I Liked It)”.
Every summer, there is one pop song that both tops the charts and I find guiltily irresistible. Last year it was Rhianna’s “Umbrella”; two years ago it was Gnarls Barkley’s “Crazy”. This year it is definitely “I Kissed a Girl”.
This song is especially interesting since it really throws the gender-bending norms right in ones face. On the surface, the lyrics are about a young, straight-defined woman who is experimenting with other women. Given that women’s sexuality seems to be more fluid than men and that girl on girl kissing is rather commonplace, the song doesn’t really seem to be breaking any huge molds here. However, Ms. Perry makes her sexuality a bit more explicit with lines like “I don’t even know your name/It doesn’t matter.” Indicating that her homo-desires are raw and explicit.
However, the lyrics are only one side of the gender-bending of this song. The actual orchestration I can only describe as a confusion of Pop/Techno and traditional Hair Metal. The latter is particularly interesting since this was primarily the domain of men of the stroke-my-enormous-cock-OMG-I-am-a-rock-star variety. Otherwise, the song is well within the “Look at me I am breaking boundaries” domain. This type typically bores me since the boundaries (which is true here) have been broken since the dawn of girls mackin’ with other chix.
You might be tempted to then say, “Haha, knock-up job mate! Now everything is all heteronormative now again!” But I assure you that this is about as far from the truth as can be.
Max changes almost none of the words. Thus the lines that go “I kissed a girl/Hope my boyfriend don’t mind it” take on a even more distinctly homosexual twist. With Katy Perry’s version, there is a girl having a first lesbian encounter, where as with Max there is a boy having his first straight encounter.
Furthermore, Max also changes the instrumentation significantly. Where Katy was using male-oriented methods to really drive her gender play home, Mr. Vernon does the same thing. Max’s take on the song make you think it is a piano solo for the first have. When more players come in, they are much lower in intensity than the original. One might even describe his version as the more feminine.
In summary, both songs are sexy and amazing. I strongly encourage a sampling.