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September 03, 2014

"Why is Taylor Swift's 'Shake It Off' No. 1?"

Chris Molanphy (in Slate): because she's following Olivia Newton-John's successful example. (And it's "impossibly catchy".)

Me: because those darn kids today have absolutely no taste.

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Michael Greenspan

Were the lyrics not adolescent look-how-nonchalant-I-am -- were they genuinely lighthearted and clever -- it would be a decent song. Instead they're all false bravado. Harmonically and melodically the song's right in line with her country stuff. Arrangement and production turn it into pure pop. Masterful use of pitch correction; sounds like a real vocal.

More than 70 million views on YouTube. Crikey.

Michael Greenspan

Incidentally, Bruce Feiler's book Dreaming Out Loud, about the country-music industry, is great reading. (The Slate article calls it "seminal," a word that must madden professional feminists.)

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