Opinion Videos

Katy Perry at the Commodore

I’m glad I brought ear plugs to the Katy Perry concert at the Commodore, as the singing was not so stellar. I don’t want to be a Debbie Downer about her whole performance, but when performers rise to a certain level of fame you just expect more than glorified karaoke.

That’s not to say Miss Perry didn’t rock it, because in my own opinion she rocked the Commodore like nobody’s business. She was dressed to perfection as a modern day Betty Boop with a short bob, sequined top, teeny tiny skirt, a black fishnets that accentuated her.. ahem… personality.

I don’t fault Katy for shakin’ what her mama gave her, that’s what this pop star business is all about. But once you strip away the glossy lips and the wardrobe, the million dollar marketing, and the pitch correction software, what’s left? A girl who’s just really passionate about making music? Or someone desperately seeking fame and fortune? With Katy I think it’s the former. She’s been in the biz since 2001, when her released her first Christian-pop album hit the shelves. She’s paid her dues for a long time, demonstrating that at the very least, she has tenacity.

I feel minority bad for raining on Katy Perry love in tonight. People in the crowd were cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs over her and I actually do enjoy her singles quite a bit. She is a vibrant, compelling performer, I just think she needs some time to mature and gain experience. And if during her maturing years, she took some singing lessons, it wouldn’t be a horrible thing. I’m just saying.

Maybe I’ve reached a new level of cynical. I personally blame the giant flaming crud that was Madonna’s Sweet n’ Sticky performance that I witnessed a few months ago. I shudder to think what I’ll be like after Britney Spears slinks through town at the end of April.

What do you think about Katy Perry, Pop Stars, or Pop-Tarts (if you have no opinion on the other 2)? Do they actually have talent or are they all just an army of fembots controlled by Simon Cowell?

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  • Reply
    January 26, 2009 at 6:55 AM

    Katy Perry can’t sing live. Period.

    Almost all of her performances I’ve watched sound terrible. The only reason she’s popular is because the songs are simple and catchy – I mean, my mom was singing ‘I kissed a girl’ *shudders*.

    Kind of sad that being gay is still ‘edgy’ in 2009.

  • Reply
    January 26, 2009 at 6:56 AM

    The dancing got “a little bit” in the way of the dancing?

    For what I’ve just heard I can tell you, that I hear better singers when playing Sing Star on my PS2 all the time!

    stop jumping, start singing! ;)


  • Reply
    Wez Maynard
    January 26, 2009 at 6:57 AM

    hmm wasnt that bad – ive heard female vocals go allot worse! Its hard live to be spot on, she sounded cool to me.

    Also, i dont get the kiss the girl single. It was a cover! Why wasn’t it controversial in the 90’s when it was first out? No-one said anything then, it was just ‘another’ bad record. I dunno. Great vid Lisa.

  • Reply
    January 26, 2009 at 6:58 AM

    I think you were pretty generous in your review. I was hunting for the Vimeo pause button (still not found) as soon as she started singing/screeching. Ouch.

  • Reply
    January 26, 2009 at 7:03 AM

    Despite the fact I don’t like her live singing, I do love her. I have a thing for her and Zooey Deschanel.

    Pop-tarts are delicious.

    Lisa, want to get me tickets for Animal Collective in May at the Commodore? :P

  • Reply
    January 26, 2009 at 7:09 AM

    I don’t care what anyone says, S’mores Pop-Tarts are the best kind. I challenge anyone to prove otherwise.

  • Reply
    January 26, 2009 at 7:09 AM

    The original “I kissed a girl” was a better song, and seemed to capture the experience better/more realistically

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    Don Crossman
    January 26, 2009 at 7:13 AM

    Ann Wilson, of Heart, said it best. When speaking of modern female pop-stars, she said, “It’s too bad they have to be pole-dancers.”

    ‘Nuff said.

  • Reply
    January 26, 2009 at 7:27 AM

    She doesn’t sound so bad to me from your video. Was that recorded with the flip mino hd?

  • Reply
    January 26, 2009 at 7:34 AM

    @Michael: I agree with you. I also find Zooey Deschanel very attractive and that is why I think I find Katy Perry so cute (not a good singer but cute). She has the same type of eyes as Zooey.

  • Reply
    Jose Riveros
    January 26, 2009 at 11:21 AM

    Not much of a Kate Perry fan.

    Lisa, could you fix the following sentence in your third paragraph:

    “She’s been in the biz since 2001, when her released her first Christian-pop album hit the shelves.”

    And, is the following use of the word minority a Canadian colloquialism?

    “I feel minority bad for raining on Katy Perry love in tonight.”

    Don’t mean to be snarky or nit-picky. Whenever we write its always good to have a second set of eyes. (Feel free to delete this comment once you have made the change(s).)

    Really dig your work and I am a fan.

  • Reply
    January 26, 2009 at 11:26 AM

    I hadn’t heard of Katy Perry until reading this post. I wish I hadn’t heard her singing either! It seems with every industry now its quantity over quality no matter what it is they are selling even if it is trash. Lisa, I hope that cherry ChapStick comment was a joke!?!?! :confused:

  • Reply
    Ray Garcia
    January 26, 2009 at 11:53 AM

    I personally like Strawberry Pop Tarts. Katy Perry… not so much. Richard Marx is the way to go!

  • Reply
    Mark Delm
    January 26, 2009 at 12:25 PM

    Personally, I like the iced Strawberry and the Apple Cinnamon.

  • Reply
    January 26, 2009 at 12:26 PM

    Katy Perry is not a fembot, however I’m pretty sure she is a replicant, but probably doesn’t know it.

  • Reply
    January 26, 2009 at 2:42 PM

    I always wear ear plugs, ever since I acquired tinnitus at a Cranberries concert years ago 

  • Reply
    January 26, 2009 at 3:09 PM

    When I stumbled across “I kissed a girl” I rather thought Katy Perry was a one hit (gimmick) wonder, but then I listened to the rest of her album. I was surprised that I liked all of them to some degree.
    On the rare occasions that I’ve heard her sing live, she wasn’t pitch perfect by any means, but I like her edginess and spirit.
    So I guess I’m saying, I’m glad I bought her album, but I’m not in a rush to go a concert. I guess that I’m Hot ‘n’ Cold. :-)

  • Reply
    January 26, 2009 at 5:22 PM

    Hi Lisa, I believe that was the Virgin Radio party that night she performed too. My friend works there and she just married Drew, one of the hosts, her sister had gone to that event as well and posted some photos on Facebook. When I saw your post & video, I just had to watch and read. Wow, thank goodness I stay home and save my money. That was horrible.

    I think you know what many of us will write here about your question. Not sure if we are getting old and turning into our parents when I say today’s pop music stars are worse than ever. We had our share in the 80’s and 90’s, but this decade looks to top the cake.

    A year of unknown economic ups and downs is going to be hard on these stars that tour. No extra money lying around for evenings like this I say. I feel sorry you had to go through that!

  • Reply
    jimmy 2 sticks
    January 26, 2009 at 7:12 PM

    I think that Pop Stars are talented for sure. While her live singing maybe not quite as powerful and in control sounding as her singles, I believe in time she will get much stronger and more secure with her self on stage. I like Katy Perry. I think she writes very well-crafted tunes, and her superstar team of producers are talented in delivering the sugar-coated seduction that is her music. And, she is hot.

  • Reply
    January 26, 2009 at 8:08 PM

    Hiya… I’d have to agree with the general concept that more goes into *flash* marketing than actually developing much in the way of real talent these days. I’m one of those who hasn’t heard of Katy, and you would be right: I haven’t turned on a radio or television much at all the past 6 months or even few years.

  • Reply
    Mostly Lisa
    January 26, 2009 at 9:46 PM

    @Pasquale: come on. i’ve seen Britney in your lastfm cue. :P

    @Michael: even the bouncers at the venue were singing “I kissed a girl”.

    @Stefan: you should hear my Rock Band rendition of “American Woman”.

    @Brandon: i likes the sound of that. S’mores. mm.

    @DariusMDeV: i’ll have to bit torrent… ahem.. i mean buy that song on iTunes & check it out.

    @Cal: no that was the Canon HV20. I did take some footage with the new FlipMino HD. I’ll put that up soon.

  • Reply
    Mostly Lisa
    January 26, 2009 at 9:56 PM

    @Don Crossman: i couldn’t have said it better myself.

    @Fosta: ha! she does bear a striking resemblance.

  • Reply
    January 26, 2009 at 10:22 PM

    I feel that in the post-MTV era, there’s far too much emphasis on the looks and the scandals (Britney) and not nearly enough on the talent. Also, record labels trying to line their coffers.

    “That girl over there, the excruciatingly hot one (points to the left), can hold a C# like nobody’s business. She can’t handle any other notes, but the C# is perfection And her looks. [Walks over] You’re signed! Five albums in three years for fifty bazillion dollars!!!111!”

  • Reply
    January 26, 2009 at 10:30 PM

    You should have added an NSFE disclaimer (not suitable for ears)

    I didn’t watch the whole video

  • Reply
    January 27, 2009 at 4:58 AM

    I don’t think she’s THAT bad live. I’ve heard a lot worse, to be fair. I know from experience playing with my band how difficult it is to sing (and play guitar) on stage at the same time as dancing around like that.

    Oh, and what happened to the super awesome prize for the MacWorld comments?

  • Reply
    January 27, 2009 at 5:16 AM

    Lisa, Interesting and nice review, I just got tickets to see her in Atlanta this April. You are correct that you can’t turn your radio on without hearing her these days and I was really curious as to why the tickets to her show were so cheap. After seeing your video of her performance I think I see why!

  • Reply
    January 27, 2009 at 10:41 AM

    Personally, I think Katy Perry doesn’t know how to sing. Her live performance singing sucks and always did.

    Sure, her songs on disc are nice, but I did some recordings and it’s impressive how far you can go with modifying sound.

    It reminds me of Lady GaGa. Although a considerably better singer, it doesn’t really show in her live performances because her songs are so modified by nature, it’s hard to sing to it while keeping their originality.

    Other artists are all the contrary, notably Feist. I’ve seen one of her live performances and her singing is as every bit good as the original. Some notable asian pop stars that seem to be all about look but know how to sing would be DBSK, aka TVXQ or Tohoshinki. Except for Yunho maybe, the other four are really good. Their standalone performances are really to check out, especially Jaejoong.

  • Reply
    Afif Tabish
    January 27, 2009 at 7:50 PM

    She sucks but shes hot. I would totally tap that. Thats my honest opinion.

  • Reply
    Quin B
    January 27, 2009 at 11:52 PM

    “But once you strip away the glossy lips and the wardrobe, the million dollar marketting, and the pitch correction software, what’s left? A girl who’s just really passionate about making music? Or someone desperately seeking fame and fortune?”

    I could not be more weary of fame junkies. (Particularly those do desperate they have to capitalize on the salacious and lurid.)

  • Reply
    January 28, 2009 at 6:07 AM

    She looks good, but I don’t listen to music because I want to sleep with the singer/band. Have heard worse singers though (I’d say she’s mediocre for a karaoke bar).

    Ps: Do you actually want to see all these concerts, Lisa, or are you forced to?

  • Reply
    January 28, 2009 at 1:01 PM

    Wow… That’s not good. I remember there was quite a buzz about her after her performance at SXSW a few years back before she got into all the “manufactured” pop crap that she does now. I guess once a major label gets involved it’s all about the money.

    Enjoyed your work on Macbreak and when you were on with LEO.
    Keep up the good work!

  • Reply
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  • Reply
    February 2, 2009 at 9:11 AM

    Definitely over Katy Perry… she can’t actually sing, and all the gloss and the sex appeal don’t make up for that. :\

    You were very diplomatic in your video! ;)

  • Reply
    February 2, 2009 at 10:58 PM

    I love how honest and real you are. Keep it up!

  • Reply
    Average Guy
    February 10, 2009 at 8:58 PM

    MMMMM, Fembots!

  • Reply
    Scott Burton
    February 11, 2009 at 10:03 AM

    I can honestly say that it is about the looks well before talent these days, and I think going back a while. I teach guitar lessons, and most of my students are kids who know this when they walk in the door. Whenever I try to show them something interesting like Battles, or even Radiohead they assure me that they have never of these bands because they probably haven’t sold enough albums. The kids know that the game is rigged. They even know about the dreaded Auto Tune, though they do legitimately freak out when I tell them that John Mayer uses it!

    Once you explain that music has nothing to do with selling records (just listen to some Smithsonian Folkways collections), they become more open minded and more interested in the music part, and less in the looks/status part.

    Of course I say all this as a member of a band that has a CD for sale. I promise we don’t look that good though!

  • Reply
    February 12, 2009 at 8:25 AM

    Katy Perry is a 1 hit wonder and it was never all that wonderful. Everyone will forget her before long and someone else will take her place.

  • Reply
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