Video Killed the Radio Star

Apr 10, 2007

I've recently been listening to some music by The Mamas & The Papas, and it got me thinking. Cass Elliot, one of "The Mamas," was rather heavy-set to say the least. Would a person like this make it in today's music scene? I'm inclined to say "no" since so much of music today is visual. As I see it, Cass just doesn't have "the look" to compete in today's market.

She's not alone. Roy Orbison is another candidate in my list of performers least likely to make it. Anyone who's listened to any of Roy's work can't deny that he has an incredible voice. But he's certainly nothing to look at. He would most likely be overlooked if he started today. Who knows how much great music we're missing out on because the artists aren't the Ken's and Barbie's that producers want them to be?

1 Comment


12:48 PM on Apr 11, 2007
In hip-hop/rap/r&b music there are a few large musicians, Missy Elliot and Queen Latifa come to mind, as well as several big guys (remember The Notorious B.I.G.?). It seems to be more common among black artists for some reason. The Blues Traveler lead singer was pretty big, and I remember seeing an interview where he said he didn't want the band to appear in their videos because "[pointing to his backside] this does not make fourteen-year-olds want to buy our records." Wasn't the guy from Meat Loaf pretty big too? That being said, I'm sure it's a lot more difficult to get signed if your lead singer is not very attractive.

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