an annoying coincidence?
I would first like to thank the corporate “outside the box” thinker who answered the question: “How can we make cell phones more annoying?” The answer that person came up with was ring tones.
I held out about a year longer than most before getting a cell phone (although my hats off to two of my friends Hank Willson and Danny Rouhier who held out about 3 years). I just believed (and part of me still does) that only doctors and other important people need cell phones. Unlike computers (because they do run our lives), we could all get along without cell phones – we would just have to be places when we say we will be. Simple. But I sold out and it has been a fairly nice convenience. But I always and I mean ALWAYS leave my phone on vibrate. Why? Because I don’t like the sound of ringing phones and many other people don’t like it either. But not everyone subcribed to this philosphy. This group goes by another name: women.
They were the first major group to buck vibrate because their phones were often in bags and they could not talk to their friends if they could not hear the ring. But like one woman in my office – a ring was not good enough. No, it required a digital rendition of Belinda Carlisle’s Heaven is a Place on Earth. And Hell is a gadget in your purse.
So women started it, but men and women are advancing it. Because for the last year or so people have been able to play real songs as their ring. So now when I am on the bus or subway I have to be held audio hostage by some kid who left his textbooks at home, but remember his PSP, his ipod and his cell phone with his G Unit ring. As long as he remembers I like large fries with my #9 meal then I guess we won’t have any problems when he graduates high school 6 years from now.
But then the unholy alliance of ring tones the new “musical” genre of reggaeton (latin for “stolen rap beats” and “no more than 12 Spanish words”) emerged.
Now I have friends who enjoy reggaeton (the same way someone says “But some of my best friends are _________”). This is the sort of Spanish rap type music for those of you who have not had the pleasure of hearing it blared out the open windows of a shiny Escalade with license plate neon light covers.
This is the music that has finally made white and black people sound like old white people in the late 80s and early 90s: “It all sounds the same. I dont get it.”
Just take the Louis Armstrong of this genre Daddy Yankee (not a Yankee, but possibly a Daddy).
Here is the Dylan-esque chorus from his hit “Gasolina:”
A ella le gusta la gasolina (dame mas gasolina!) = She likes gasoline (give me more gasoline!)
Como le encanta la gasolina (dame mas gasolina) = How she adores gasoline! (give me more gasoline)
Probably the best and most complex metaphor since 50 Cent told women that they could lick his “lolli pop” in the candy shop.
So you can imagine how much I enjoyed hearing this song as a ringtone. I felt like Shooter McGavin in the film The Perfect Sotrm when he sees the two bad weather patterns about to collide.
But I have yet to hear a reggaeton song that does not strongly ressemble Gasolina. Now an artist as brilliant as Father Met will have copycat artists, but does every song have to sound the same? Give me a generic beat, women who sound horny in the chorus, some keyboard (more Herbie Hancock than KC and the Sunshine Band) and add a man yelling Sapnish. HIT RECORD.
Maybe I am just being a hater. Perhaps I wish I could find the comedic equivalent. Take Richard Pryor’s jokes, make them less funy and then have sexy women say the punchlines, in Portuguese. SITCOM DEAL
I am just waiting for someone to develop ringtones of fingernails accross a chalkboard. That I would download, make sure it is extremely loud and have a woman saying “chalkalina” in the background and then yell at everyone saying “Now you know how I feel.”