7 sounds of music
It may be premature ageing (or, simply, ageing) but I must admit I follow the Top 100 incredibly less than I used to. And it’s not for lack of trying: I go and check it out regularly, listen to the songs they have up there… but there are very few I find truly (or even remotely) interesting, let alone artistically or creatively compelling. Post Malone may be a nice guy, and his musical style is surprisingly subdued compared to his bad boy looks (then again, looks can be deceiving), but his latest album is called Beerbongs & Bentleys. Like, seriously? What about Crack cocaine & Caviar? Or Daiquiris & Diamonds?
Nevertheless, I persisted. And stumbled onto the latest Ariana Grande single, “7 rings”. It debuted at number #1 last January, made history as the most streamed song in the first 24 hours following its release, and spent 8 weeks on top of the charts all in all. Basically, a fairly big deal in contemporary pop music. I had seen the music video (mostly in the gym, therefore without sound) but never actually heard the piece before. And so, yesterday, in a moment of sheer adventurousness, I finally did: a couple of seconds in, I got the strange feeling that I knew this song already. For a very good reason: “7 rings” is essentially a modern pop-rnb circa 2019 retelling of… The sound of music’s “My favorite things”.
You read right: this syrupy track with a more than suggestive music video (half of which sees Grande bending doggy style on a table, then a doll-sized cupboard for some unclear reason) is taking its key hook from a musical about a nun raising motherless children in 1939 Austria. To balance it out, the ending of “7 rings” is taken from another song, this time slightly more recent, and arguably edgier — Notorious B.I.G.’s "Gimme the Loot". What’s in between those two “reinventions”, I hear you ask? Very good question.
The purpose of this website at launch was to focus on great — or even the greatest — songs out there. Claiming that “7 rings” is a great — or the greatest — song might somewhat of an overreach, no matter your benchmark. And yet, it made number #1, so you must assume that some people did enjoy it. Let’s hope they’re young. Very young.