This isn’t a funny post.  I’m not doing a comedy post.  This is, very simply, something that annoys me.


Christina Aguilera does this to my face.

My degree is in English.  Not English Education, not English as a Language, but rather it’s composition, literature, and creative writing.  Now this doesn’t mean my opinion is worth any more, and I’m certainly not appealing to the authority (HA!) of an English degree.  This is brought up solely to address the framework for my criticism.  Of course it also enables everyone to take me to task for my sloppy word usage, misspelling, grammar errors and the like because, honestly, I should know better.

But as someone who has poetry in my blood and ink staining my soul, I feel that Christina Aguilera ruins the entire thesis of the song by Great Big World, Say Something.  The song is about, ostensibly, a person pouring their heart out to a significant other who won’t say anything in return.  And then Christina adds her voice.   What?  The almost minimalist arrangement and lone voice of the original encompass that awkward otherness of the situation.  There is someone there.  You love this someone.  You’re telling this someone that you’d be one with them, and not be alone.  But you’re still alone.  Feeling alone and isolated while with someone you want to and would be united with if they consented to it is such a stark contrast that it’s difficult not to be moved by it.  Having elements to the music, and voice emoting, and everything else echo and reinforce that main thesis is powerful.  It’s moving.  Miss Aguilera adding her voice dilutes that.  It isn’t that she’s over singing, or singing poorly, or not emoting correctly.  To bring in the voice of anyone else ruins that.  It would have been better to have her sing it alone.  Note that I said ‘better’ than the combined voice.  The original is still better than either of those options.

Now there are other ways to interpreting the song of course.  I always picture a man talking to her wife as she’s passing from cancer.  She won’t say something because she’s dead.  Yes I cry, big manly tears.  I’m not saying your like of the song, or interpretation wrong.  Maybe you think that her voice is nice enough that it overcomes whatever other negatives it brings.

Me?  It ruins the song for me.  I want the radio to play the old version.  Like I said, not funny.