Girl Power! | MUSIC: Rock & Roll Quarterly | Indy Week
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Girl Power! 

Hey, isn't that the name of a porn video?

Video chicks are HOT! Let's face it: They got what we want. The music industry knows what sells. SEX.

Is it a problem? Maybe to some, but to me, um, yes and no. It's all in how you take it. It's like this: If ya go to see a scary movie, ya gonna be scared. If ya drink orange juice, ya get vitamin C. If ya watch MTV or BET, ya gonna see sexy. It isn't rocket science. Enjoy it, or hate it--it's up to you, but just don't believe it.

These dancers and artists get up hours, and I mean hours, in advance to get ready for their scenes. Just like in movies.

No one is perfect, but music videos are.

My two favorite music videos featuring chicks right now are Sean Paul's "Gimme the Light" and Erykah Badu's "Love Of My Life" from the Brown Sugar movie soundtrack. Sean Paul's is classic, because it's teaching the United States how to do the dance to the buzz riddim. The Log On, The Drive-By and The Schreechie are just a few of the many dances featured in it.

Dances used to just be passed through clubs and in the streets, and now they're going straight to the 'burbs. Dancehall is hitting anyone with a TV. Even though there are some risky moves and some flashy skin, mom and dad, these dance aren't dirty--you can make them nasty if you want. But they really aren't--it's all about moving to the beat.

Erykah's new video featuring rapper Common, is much like Common's classic "I Used To Love H.E.R." Both songs are a journey through hip hop and the many phases and stages that it has had. "Love Of My Life" is an awesome video with awesome video chicks.

But these two videos are rated PG compared to some videos on that "Uncut" late-night skin fest on BET. And when it comes to these pole-dancing vids, I'm gonna have to have to agree with a fellow female writer who said: "If I wanna see some ass, I will pick up a copy of Black Tail."

Tits and ass are for porn. And the more skin ya show in your video, the more it takes away from your music. Have you ever seen a semi-naked chick in an Eminem video? Only as a joke to make fun of other videos.

So there is a place and a market for non-sexual videos. Some chicks, like Christina Aguilera, who can really sing, seem to thrive too much on their images, and that's a shame. But look at Alicia Keys, who has won Grammys and only really shown her navel.

Speaking of navels, let's talk about Avril Levigne. The flipside of targeting to teens, right? I don't know where this chick came from or what factory she was built in, but I guess I was born too early, 'cuz her agents would have just had to hand me a mic when I was 12, and that would have been me on the shine instead.

At least she is giving an anarchistic vibe that might spark more than a Bic lighter from the teenyboppers in the crowd.

But what's next? That's the issue. The music video renaissance? Are we ever gonna see some ugly-ass female musicians? Or are we gonna continue watching Summer Camp--oops, I mean Making The Band? In the words of P. Diddy, one of the most successful bizness-men: "Let her go eat." That's what he said about some chick in a recent episode. He's right. Ya ain't gonna make it sitting on ya skinny ass.

It is a shame that Ella and Billie would have had a pretty slim chance of "making the band" these days with cameras around. Because if it wasn't for these chicks ... well, if it wasn't for these chicks, that's all I gotta say.

Unbelievably, one of the biggest-butt video chicks has made it in this day and age. Missy Elliot is it! This mama is killing it and has been for some time. The paid-in-full rapper's latest video is pretty damn hot! "Work It" is an exception to the "more skin, less music" rule. She has really been true to herself by always "keeping it real" and she encourages ladies that make loot shaking their thing to "stay on top on the game." Lost a few pounds in her waist, though.

It's simple. If you take media and videos with a chaser of reality, you will not get lost in the hype, but enjoy the sight! So I guess that videos are dumb in both ways: dumb meaning good and dumb meaning bad--bad meaning bad and bad meaning good. Ya feel me? EndBlock

K8 Erwin is the urban music director at WKNC. She is a regular contributor to The Independent.

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