If you are Blush group, a girl group of 4 ladies, and you release a ‘hot’ new single called “Crazy Love,” you’re likely having a really good day. On the other hand, if you are Blush Group and you release a ‘hot’ new single called “Ain’t Nobody Got Time for That,” you’re most definitely having a bad day. However, that “Crazy Love” came after “Ain’t Nobody Got Time for That,” shows at least things are moving in the right direction for Blush Group.
Blush’s “Crazy Love” in collaboration with Sean Kingston, with lyrics like “if I give you a chance, don’t make me have regrets,” are innocently suggestive and like anything with Sean Kingston, lots of fun. Currently on tour with the Janoskian, Blush group have been using “Crazy Love” to great effect to close out their set.
“Ain’t Nobody Got Time for That,” released in January of 2014 has lyrics like ”I don’t want no gentleman, so put your hands right there now,” as well as freely used “fu*k” and “bit*ches.” The song elicited responses like “absolutely terrible, omg” on iTunes, and on YouTube a commenter elaborated:
you thought this was garbage you should have seen them on this show performing this song live……awful, just….no. but i do like warrior and undivided though and im in love with all of their hair, very well styled
The song was so toxic and disjointed of what a group embarking on a high school tour should be producing, that the fallout may well have cost the group a member. The last recorded time Blush performed the single was on Arsenio, in front of their executive producer Quincy Jones. Blush member Jihae Lee had the unfortunate position of uttering the lines with “hands” while motioning to…. well, down there.
That was the last we heard of Miss Jihae Lee, as a member of Blush. Blush did not perform “Ain’t Nobody Got Time For That,” at their tour stop on October 10, 2014 at the Wellmont Theater in Montclair NJ. It appears the song has been dropped from their setlist, all together.
The details are not clear. It’s possible Jihae, who is Korean, objected to this form of over-sexualization, possible exploitation, and likely perversion of what at times, for reasons unclear, is referred to as “girl power.”
Ask the average American girl to name a person who represents “girl power,” and, you’ll definitely hear Beyoncé, if you are lucky you’ll hear COO of Facebook Sheryl Sandberg, and you definitely will not hear CEO of Xerox Ursula Burns. These are all, for various reasons, excellent examples of “girl power.” Yet, the shining examples of “girl power” tend to be those who reveal more skin, and have longer weaves.
“That would really be girl power!” said Blush member Victoria, of a possible collaboration with “Little Mix,” the UK based girl group. “Little Mix,” like their forebears “the Spice Girls” are an excellent example of “girl power.” They manage to be themselves without the “cabaret for teens,” and use lyrics like “and we don’t let nobody bring us down.” “The Spice Girls” for their part with lyrics like “I’ll tell you want I want, what I realy really want…” couldn’t have epitomized “girl power” better.
However, all the usual suspects of so-called “girl power” were name-dropped by members of Blush as other possible girl power collabs. Beyoncé, check. Iggy Azelea, Check. Nicky Minaj who came with “please, please, please”, check.
A recent example of seemingly, “girl power” gone awry occurred a little closer to the home-origin of Blush, in South Korea. The most popular girl group in Asia and arguably the world, Girls Generation stunned fans from Seoul to San Diego, when it kicked out one of its members, Jessica. Again, the details are unclear, but rumor has it that Jessica setting up a fashion business and expressing interest in marriage to her boyfriend, cost her position. She was summarily dismissed, not necessarily by management, but by her own group members. In the past the de facto leader and regular spokesperson of the group, Tiffany has always advocated for girl power, and held her group up as a shining example.
Although, the rhetorical debate is age-old, “can a woman have it all?” An opportunity may have been missed to set an example to millions of little girls worldwide, and give a different narrative.
“Here’s Jessica, member of global girl group, and business owner.” This would have been true girl power, and empowering in every sense of the word. Jessica for her part was willing to bear the burden. A commenter on the popular kpop news site Soompi.com, named JasminW said
“if there was a way that she could do both… her own business and singing at the same time.
But I guess this is not how things work”
Before Beyoncé decide to follow in the footsteps of the catwoman, and incorporated cabaret into her performances with the release of Single Ladies in 2008,” she had already the notches on her belt as an established artist and entertainer. Her talent, work ethic and professional acumen had been well established.
The “girl Power” for Beyonce didn’t come out, when the clothes came off. Beyonce already had that down pat. Unfortunately, it’s indicative of ourselves and the society we’ve created, and sustain, that girl power is primarily equated with the amount of clothes a woman is willing to do without.
As Blush took to the stage at the Wellmont Theater in Monclair, NJ one of the many middle-schoolers in the crowd giggled excited, and said to her friend “she’s nasty” (true story). Of the outfits that night, Blush Angeli’s stood out for its lack of bottoms, and Blush Alisha’s for its deep cleavage.
In a recent interview with NPR, legendary Scottish singer Annie Lennox said the following with regards to the recent crop of pop music
‘The reason why I’ve commented is because I think that this overt sexuality thrust — literally — at particular audiences, when very often performers have a very, very young audience, like 7 years older, I find it disturbing and I think its exploitative. It’s troubling. I’m coming from a perspective of a woman that’s had children’
Aside from that one-off comment, the fact is Blush do engender a lot of admiration from any audience they stand before. From Belfast to Boston, they receive enthusiastic responses to their performances. On Twitter, the admiration is palpable, as fan after fan express their “love” and admiration.
Blush group have worked really hard to get the almost 300,000 followers on Twitter, and 300,000 likes on Facebook they have. In the last two years, the group has embarked on three tours, taking them across the United States each time. Their current tour, with the Janoskians is supported by Live Nation. They’ve won awards and Billboard acclaim, and all those live performances has them sounding better than ever.
But if they’re doing girl power, then let’s really empower the girls. A girl’s mind develops before her body, so let the empowerment be in that order. They certainly have their attention.