The Morality of Remixes: The Rebirth of a Song or Shameless Greed?


It happened. Again.

Today, Katy Perry’s infamous fifth single “Last Friday Night” was released on Itunes, this time featuring rapper Missy Elliott. Not that I have any idea who Missy Elliott is. Regardless, it seems that a new trend in the music industry is to milk popular songs to death by releasing multiple remixes, as if the initial success of the song wasn’t enough. I suppose that one fair excuse for the countless versions of songs are the need for artistic expression through re-creating one’s own masterpiece. However, I do have the slightest suspicion that the greed of the music industry has something to do with it.

Not that I can really point a finger at anyone who really enjoys remixes. I, for one, have 3 CDs that only contain various Lady Gaga remixes, because I find that remixes breathe new life on songs that I’ve listened to so many times that I’ve gotten tired of them (not to mention that they are terribly fun to dance to).

Whether you like remixes or not, ponder this: is it wrong to warp a song so much that it is hardly recognizable? I’ve heard lots of remixes that cut out practically 90% of the vocals and fill in the rest of the song with some synth beats that are supposed to sound like the original song. Do you think that it’s too much to take a good song and make it a shell of what it used to be for the sake of some extra cash? Is that creativity or creative marketing?

Well, no matter how much remixes may reek of the avarice of capitalism, they’ll always have the sheer dance-ability that the original version lacked. Amen to that!

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