Music influences people and culture. Even in places that technology could no longer reach, music still thrives. No matter how far you go, music always seems to catch up with you, whether in prayers, rituals, or daily accounts of living. Music has been influencing our lives. Sometimes in ways, we don’t expect. When we listen to songs, they convey messages that our words often fail to describe. But some songs caused some stir either because of their provocative lyrics or outright disregard for social issues that many of us hold too close to home.
Many songs opened discussions about matters that affect our society. Others would simply make you bury your face in your hand out of dismay. For our first Press Play rundown, we give you three of the most memorable and controversial songs in recent years. These three songs made so much stir that, to this day, we still talk about the controversies surrounding them.
Eminem or Marshall Mathers is known for releasing unapologetic and controversial songs. But perhaps, the song that truly made him a household name is ‘Stan.’ The song sampling Dido’s ‘Thank You’ drew mixed reactions from critics and listeners. Stan is about a deranged fan who ended up murdering his pregnant girlfriend prior to committing suicide. The song became so popular that in 2018, Oxford English Dictionary officially included the definition of stan as an overzealous or obsessive fan of a particular celebrity.
BLURRED LINES (Robin Thicke feat. TI, Pharell)
In 2013, when Robin Thicke released the song that received extreme comments from fans and critics alike because of its misogynistic and abusive lyrics, we all thought it would end there. Apart from getting slapped with a $5.3 million judgment in 2018, after Marvin Gaye’s family filed a plagiarism case against the artist, for illegally copying ‘Got to Give it Up’, Emily Ratajkowski, one of the supermodels featured in the 2013 controversial hit, accused Robin Thicke of sexually assaulting her during the set of the music video.
WE CAN’T STOP (Miley Cyrus)
It might have been difficult for Hannah Montana fans to see Miley grow into a vocal and self-exploring woman. Though it took a while, people got over it and accepted that the artist simply wanted to express herself. Even that controversial live performance with another controversial song, Blurred Lines. We all know what happened there. But what was shocking was when the singer admitted that the song was about drugs. People suggested that the lyrics “So la-da-di-da-di we like to party, dancing with Miley” is a play of pun and sound for “Dancing with Molly,” a reference for MDMA. Speaking of lyrics, the song also faced a $300 million copyright infringement after a Jamaican singer Michael May a.k.a. Flourgon claimed that the song took elements from his composition and misappropriated them, including the phrase, “We run things. Things no run we,” which Cyrus sings, “We run things, thing don’t run we.”It was reported the singer’s camp reached a settlement, but no amount was disclosed.