Recently crowned Arby’s spokesperson and music producer Pharrell Williams recently opened his highly anticipated album GIRL for streaming on iTunes radio.
The album is 10 tracks of pop perfection; nothing less should be expected from one of the premier figures in pop music in the 21st century. The crossover appeal is staggering, it’s a “hop out of your seat and dance with your grandma” record through and through.
But I had to ask myself, how did the guy who started out eating cereal in the back of Clipse music videos go from that to this?
Well, if you really look at Skateboard’s P career trajectory, this was more than likely the plan all along.
Mr. Williams, with his partner in crime Chad Hugo, were part of a production duo called The Neptunes. They are one of the most commercially successful production teams of all time.
At one point in the early ‘00s, they held almost a monopoly on pop music. Almost a third of all the music on the billboard 100 in the year 2003 was produced by the Neptunes.
Coming off the heels of said success, Pharrell began to pursue a solo career and making his own music with his band N.E.R.D., which was essentially The Neptunes solo projects.
It was during this time that he began to craft the jazzy, poppy sound that is now set to dominate the airwaves. A lot of his early solo outputs were experimental for their time, and a lot of people did not know how to respond to them.
But after seeing the finished product in his last album, his musical linage has finally come together. He was attempting to craft the perfect Pop sound, and now he’s done it.
The thing about Pop that a lot of people don’t understand is that it’s meant to be a combination of all the popular sounds at the time. Most pop artists and pop producers will only focus on one, and drive it into the ground until nobody wants to hear it anymore.
Pharrell has taken a different approach, and has truly crafted a sound that is a little pop, a little hip-hop, a little soul, a little rock, and thrown it into a pot magically.
Not since the heyday of Quincy and Michael has anyone gotten to this level.
If you thought Get Lucky and Happy and Blurred Lines were flukes, think again.
Pharrell is going to be around for a while. Get used to the Star Trek lifestyle.