Are Miley Cyrus and Taylor Swift damaging the music industry for women?

When a daughter of a one-hit wonder, with questionable singing talent has to perform at a major music awards, what can she do to stand out from the likes of Gaga, Perry, Adele, Madonna, Spears, Rihanna or Swift’s weekly attempt to diss her exs?

If the aim was to steal the show, Miley Cyrus has well and truly succeeded. She even managed to upstage 1D, the brief *NSync reunion (or was that the reunion of Justin Timberlake’s backing group – from the performance it was hard to tell!) and even the once Queen of odd-ball show stoppers, Lady Gaga.

Wait, Miley upstaged Lady Gaga? What did she do, perform a lap dance live on stage?

Well yes, virtually. That was bad enough, but if only she had left it at just that.

Miley has caused an internet sensation, but not for her songs or her singing, but for arguably single-handedly pushing back the female equality movement by about 4 decades.  Fan or foe, few of us are discussing the merits of her song, or even her voice. No we are discussing a performance which would make a street-walker blush.

Why I ask, is there a need for young female artists to behave like this, while their male counterparts are permitted to keep their clothes on?

Taylor Swift almost impressively lowered her already floor crawling demeanour by having yet another less than sly pop at her ex during her acceptance speech. Parallels can be drawn between Swift and Adele – Adele’s classic song, ‘Someone like you’ is a beautifully performed, dignified, timeless track, crafted from a place of great pain. And yet she managed to a) keep her clothes on while performing said song, b) win shed loads of awards, and c) has yet to have a very public dig at her ex boyfriend, the alleged muse of the song.  Unlike Swift, Adele has clearly moved on since co-penning her biggest hit and is in by all accounts a wonderful relationship, as well as enjoying life as a new mum.

Swift should take note of Adele’s elegant example. Yes there is a time to express your anger, in many cases it is healthy and vital to do so.  But the continuing digs after a certain amount of time just makes her look like a pathetic loser. Take the hint Swift, show some class and dignity, in the words of Catherine Tate, “he aint bovvered”. All Swift has managed to achieve with her public bitterness, is increased sympathy for her ex, and distracted from her body of work. I am not a fan of her music, and actually can’t stand 1D, but this 1-sided feud is detracting away from the music, and that does no good for an industry in dire straits. She is now more famous for her ex boyfriend ‘digs’, than her songs. Kanye West’s infamous disruption of Swift’s best video acceptance speech a few years ago, looks like a form of semi-prophecy now. Pity he didn’t do it again this year!

If this is how female artists have to behave to have their limited talents showcased, then please take back the right to vote. We need to start the fight for equality again, and this time, do it right. I’m tired of watching naked women running around in front of cameras, and then having the cheek to call it a music promo. It isn’t! It is especially unconvincing when the camera operators, music techs and video directors are still dominated by middle-income, middle-aged, hetro-sexual men. Where are all the camerawomen? Where are the female writers, directors, producers and managers? Or did someone publish the wrong date and this is indeed the year 1953, where women are regarded as nothing more than playthings for men? Surely society has moved on from this madness? Appears from the actions and reactions of both Miley and Taylor, we haven’t.

Thanks Cyrus and Swift, thanks a lot!

 

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