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How Beyoncé Impacted Pop With Surprise Album

Upward-Spiral-Logo 160By Alex May (@AlexmDrums)

In a recent episode of the Upward Spiral podcast, we talked with Alicia Yaffe of the Spellbound Group and Beth Martinez of Danger Village about the impact of Beyoncé’s newest release. Both guests had a lot to add to the conversation. Here are some of the best parts.

1. Cultural Impact Of Beyoncé Compared To Thriller

Alicia Yaffe compared Beyoncé’s cultural impact to Michael Jackson’s Thriller.

“Thriller itself changed the format of what music videos were and could be. You know, it extended the song and the music video from a visual stimulation to engage multiple senses, to a story, to a musical, to a more narrative experience akin to movies, which had been around, for much longer as a cultural gathering place and a way to tell stories, and of course, was the extension of the world’s oldest traditions.”

— Alicia Yaffe of The Spellbound Group | @thespllbndgroup


“Beyoncé has completely removed herself from any competition in the music world. She’s completely removed herself from the realm of an artist or a pop star into a complete — comparable to any of the other active artists today — into a completely new category." 

That’s what Michael Jackson did with Thriller. He removed himself from conversation in the context of the music industry, of another album release, of another music video release, of just being an artist, into being a phenomenon unto himself. And I would say that Beyoncé has done that here.”

Alicia Yaffe of The Spellbound Group | @thespllbndgroup

2. Beyoncé Proved Honest Music Can Sell Records

Beth Martinez thinks Beyoncé has shown that she is unconcerned with making radio hits. She hopes that such honesty will inspire more authentic pop music.

“I think that what’s so amazing, and so revolutionary about this is that Beyoncé is the biggest pop star in the world, making an ablum where there are no radio hits. There’s nothing done for anyone else. Most pop records, every Katy Perry record is made to be a radio hit. Everything on Lady Gaga’s record was made to be for mass audiences, and this record was made for Beyoncé, I think. I really get that feeling that I don’t think she made it for anyone else but herself.”

 — Beth Martinez of Danger Village | @dangervillage 


“This proves that honest music that people make with passion can sell, and I hope, I’m gonna hold out the hope that this will inspire other people to stick to their guns and make the music they want to make, because I think we’re sick of hearing manufactured crap.”

 — Beth Martinez of Danger Village | @dangervillage 

“I don’t believe when people say the record industry’s failing. I think that means there are certain parts of the industry that are failing. I think those parts that are failing, fail because they are trying to shove inauthentic crap down our throats, and we don’t want it."

"I really just am so hopeful that this changes things. So maybe in a small way it will, maybe in a big way it will, who knows, but I just am really excited that it’s sold so much in one week, and it proves that when you’re real, people connect with that, and will buy the record."

 — Beth Martinez of Danger Village | @dangervillage 


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