October 7, 2008.
Ciara releases the "Go Girl" video. The video featured a brand new Ciara with a brand new style ("new style" these days means black hair dye), and hot choreography which took me back to the days when all it took was a good dance breakdown to entertain me. And if that wasn't enough, it had T-Pain.
T muthafuckin' Pain!
"Go Girl" was going to be that song, the "big hit" that transformed Ciara into the worldwide mainstream star she deserved to be. Yes, Ciara was finally about to breakthrough and become the new queen of the industry.
Then one week later...all hell broke loose.
Such is the life of an R&B female artist in the 21st Century. Just when you think you're about to beat Beyonce, she sneaks up on you from behind, grabs you by your drawstring ponytail, and smashes your face into the ground, over and over again until you are forced to retreat back into the studio and try again.
Ciara did retreat back into the studio and 6 months later we have "Love, Sex, Magic" which is low on love and magic, but heavy on the sex. Not that the sex part is that believeable. Justin and Ciara have about as much chemistry as Beyonce and Mike Meyers in Austin Powers... Or Beyonce and Cuba Gooding Jr. in Fighting Temptations, or Beyonce and Adrian Brody in Cadillac Records.(SIDEBAR: Can we write Beyonce a hot Monster's Ball love scene or something? I know she's married but I need passion! Beyonce needs to make us feel like she wants the dick! That's what wins Oscars!)
But I digress...
Today I come to you not to criticize but to help our sister-in-Christ Miss Ciara Harris. My first memory of Ciara was on 106 and Park, November 2004. Ciara will admit that she's not the best singer, but on stage at 106 and Park she sounded good, looked great and hit all the moves, and seemed genuinely interested in putting on a good show. Not since Sasha Fierce had I been that impressed by a new artist that early in their career and I remember saying to myself: "This chick might be competition".
5 Years later Ciara is opening for Britney Spears and hasn't made a hit has big as "Goodies". It seems as though she wants a Beyonce-esque level of fame and success but doesn't seem to know how to make that happen. For everything Beyonce does, Ciara seems to do a smaller scale version.
Beyonce gets Oscar buzz in Cadillac Records.
Ciara does a straight-to-DVD movie.
Beyonce starts a clothing line and becomes Thierry Mugler's muse
Ciara models Rocawear.
Beyonce releases a multi-platinum album and has 5 songs on the charts at the same time...
Ciara...well...she just can't get right.
Before you fix your mouth to say "Not everybody wants to be like Beyonce", let me just tell you that you're a garbage-mouthed liar. Nobody dreams of being in the music industry and says "One day I want to be semi-famous and be #4 behind 3 another chicks." and for anyone of them to say they wouldn't want to trade places with Beyonkadonk, I would have to believe that they are lying.
But it takes more to being Beyonce than shaking your ass or picking the right removable hair pieces. So today Wig Crypt presents to you:
4 Ways Ciara Can Beat Beyonce (or at least become #2)
#1. Make Us Want To Be You As Much As You Want to Be Beyonce
"Love, Sex, Magic" is cute but not catchy. It will not inspire any dances or YouTube videos. The club won't go crazy when the DJ plays it. President Obama won't quote it in any of his speeches. On Halloween, if a bunch of tangy-ass 7 year old boys came to my door dressed in leotards with Reynolds Wrap foil on their hand I would know automatically that they are dressed as Miss Sasha Fierce in 'Single Ladies'. If another bunch of tangy-ass 7 year old boys came to my door dressed like this:
I wouldn't know what to make of it.
Me: What are you kids supposed to be? Thundercats?
Gay Kids: No...
Me: Gay Cheetahs?
Gay Kids: No....
Me: Gay Crackheads?
Gay Kids: No...
Me: Gay Crackhead Cheetahs?
Gay Kids: No...We're Ciara!
Me: (slams door)
Beyonce has given us a BUNCH of universally recognized dances and styles. "Put a ring on it" and "To The Left..." have become apart of daily language. To be Beyonce you need to be able to influence the way people talk, dress, and they kind of feminine hygiene products they buy. If you're going to be a female version of a hustla, your impact needs to reach far beyond the music.
#2. Stop Trying to Remind Us That You Have a Vagina
When "Goodies" came out and it was rumored that Ciara was born with a big floppy nutsack it was probably one of the worst and unfair internet rumors ever (you hateful internet bitches!). Since that time Ciara has tried her hardest to prove once and for all that she in fact does have a couple of holes down there. Whether it was that awkwardness with 50 Cent, her "relationship" with Bow Wow, busting it open and getting loose on the cover VIBE, or molesting Justin Timberlake on camera it has been a constant and deliberate effort to prove that she likes boys but is not one.
Beyonce has never had to prove her femininity because no has ever accused Beyonce of having a penis. Beyonce may be a big drag queen but it is a known fact that she is 100% certified Starkist Tuna fish. Ain't no balls down there. She's a whole lotta woman.
#3. Make That Money, Don't Let Make You
As I said on day one of Beyonceitis, "women in music have been slinging pussy since Tina was rolling on the river with Ike", so Ciara making her cooch fart in Justin Timberlake's face doesn't really bother me. But in my eyes female sexuality has almost been more powerful when it's the female who's in charge and defining her sexuality on her terms rather than relying on a man to define it.
- Janet Jackson was wrecking shit at the Superbowl Halftime show up until she relinquished control of her show to Justin Timberlake. He may have added mainstream relevance, but he walked away with her career.
- In "Love, Sex, Magic," Ciara was there for solely Justin's pleasure, singing Justin's song, rolling around in cages and licking him and grabbing his nuggets like she ain't got no damn home training. He may have added mainstream relevance, but we still don't have a better sense of who Ciara is.
- Beyonce, on the other hand, had Justin running around the set of Saturday Night Live with his ass hanging out dancing behind her, doing HER choregraphy to a song that she had already made famous. Beyonce didn't need any mainstream relevance.
Get the picture?
#4. Be Nice To Sasha Fierce and her Followers
When Ciara first came out she said that it was Destiny's Child that influenced her to get into show business.
Let's just be honest. It was BEYONCE that influenced her to get into show business, (I'm sure Michelle Williams dancing awkwardly in the background wasn't what led her to that epiphany).
Since that time Ciara (and a whole lot of other R&B/Pop broads) have been trying to distance themselves from Beyonce's influence on them even after admitting that Beyonce was the one who inspired them to dip it, pop it, twerk it, and/or stop it.
Maybe if Ciara would talk honestly about Queen Creole's influence on her career it would appease those nutty Beyonce stans who don't like it if an artist so much as looks at Beyonce cockeyed. If we learned anything from the Keri Hilson episode of this show you DON'T want to make Beyonce stans angry. They're the ones who keep Beyonce afloat, what makes you think they can't make (or break) you?
We hated on Ne-Yo for having the audacity to take credit for a song he wrote.
We hated on Aretha and Etta James for trying to bait Tina Knowles into a Senior Citizen Slap Boxing Match.
We hated on Keri Hilson for maybe, sorta, kinda, dissing Beyonce in a song.
And we hated on Rihanna just for being born.
We almost started to hate on Ciara for that "If I Were a Boy"/ "Like a Boy" controversy. But that really didn't take off they way I hoped it would.
The point is, us
Because I understand that it's hard to put creativity on a deadline, I won't continue to belabor the numerous pushbacks and delays of Ciara's 3rd album, and I'll reserve total judgment until her album comes out, whenever it comes out...IF it comes out. I hope she can pull it together. I don't want to officially put Ciara on the "Beyonceitis Victims" list, because there's still room for her in the industry, and there are artists less talented than who have achieved more success. I just hope everything works out and the wait was worth it because she deserves better.