Music Thoughts


April 18, 2017

My siblings and I have been playing a song game as we’ve been traveling around Europe. It goes like this, someone starts singing the lyrics to a song and the first to recognize the song and continue singing the lyrics correctly wins.

An easy one that got stuck in our heads was, “I took a pill……in Ibiza,” by Mike Posner. You should all know this song, it bleeds popular tropical house, summertime day parties, and overplayed radio hits. This version is actually a remix of an acoustic song originally produced by Posner.

But who has actually taken the time to listen to the lyrics? I have.

It is a song Mike Posner wrote about the difficulties of fame and fortune. Posner ironically channels his self-disdain and regret for being successful, rich, and famous into a pop song now knownΒ by every teenager in the country.

Before delving into the greater issues with celebrity self-victimization, I’ll give some background about Mike Posner.

While a Duke student, Posner jumped on the auto-tuned EDM hype and came out with a few widely popular songs. You maybe recall, Cooler Than Me, Please Don’t Go, and You Don’t Have to Leave. If you don’t recall these song, it’s okay, you are not the only one.

Clearly, Posner had success and as he says in his song, “I’m living out in LA / I drive a sports car just to prove / I’m a real big baller ’cause I made a million dollars / And I spend it on girls and shoes.” But for some reason Posner finds himself struggling with the fact that he now, “Stuck up on that stage singing” all of his songs making tens of thousands of dollars per hour.

I’m no doctor, but if I was I would diagnosis this as a case of unwarrantedΒ spoils of wealth. Unfortunately, for the Duke educated Posner, he spent is earnings on girls and shoes. So where does the sympathy and empathy come into play. Well, for me it doesn’t. I cannot empathize because I have never had much expendable money to spend on girls, shoes, and cars. I can sympathize with anyone not feeling well, don’t get me wrong. But I don’t have much respect for those who cry for pity when their troubles pair in comparison to almost anyone else’s problems.

I don’t think Posner’s problem is a result of his money and fame, but his perspective.

But damn, that song is catchy.

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