On the social media, a story quickly spread on how Kreayshawn’s debut album allegedly sold under 4000 in its first week. For the last year, Kreayshawn had been hyped as one of the hottest rappers today. There were some who felt she was a novelty, and name the variables. She’s a woman in a genre still dominated by men, and where the women are no longer in the forefront as they once were. She’s a white lady wanting to be a rapper. She’s associated with other ladies who wanted to spawn off careers in music. She had created her own movement through Twitter and Facebook, and all of this lead to her having a hit song. One was able to see many videos of her performing the song with her crew, and hundreds of hip-hop and music websites welcomed her with open arms, promoting her as the next-big-star to be. Things went quiet for awhile, but that only meant she was writing and recording new music for the album. However, a few things went on in the process.
“Gucci Gucci” did quite well for her in 2011, which lead to the release of more singles up until the release of the album. For decades, critics have warned people about how artists can be hear one day, gone the next, and it seemed Kreayshawn was being blasted left and right for everything she did and said. People do like her music, enough for it to be a hit, but one can also ask if that hit status was manufactured. What constitutes as a hit these days? MP3 sales? YouTube hits? Concert dates? Regardless, she received a lot of attention and Columbia Records were ready to boost her and make her their next success. Looking at the social media again, the news of Somethin’ About Kreay let to everyone saying something about it, including one popular statement: “I didn’t realize she had an album coming out.” Who is to blame for that? She currently has about 565,000 Twitter followers, what happened to them? Even if 30 to 70 percent of her followers are fakes/bots, that still leaves her with a good amount of sales potential. I did read one comment which stated that Kreayshawn’s target audience consists of people who don’t understand the concept of buying music, so is that an honest factor, that everyone who has heard the album downloaded it illegally?
Now where’s Columbia Records? A company owned by Sony, one who has enough money to promote anyone and eveyrone at any time, should be able to financce a promotional campaign that would make it impossible for anyone to not know she has new music. Of course, we live in a time when albums are not “sleepers” or “slow burners”. There was a time when an album could have been out for a year, and only then did it finally sell 500,000 copies. Sometimes it can take two years. Countless artists in music had albums that were “slow burners”, where slow and steady wins the race. The industry is now based on a “live or die” attitude, where if it doesn’t sell with the expectations made, it is considered a failure or flop. Everyone wants to sell massively, or as the old saying goes when people bought hard copy on a regular basis, it needs to be “flying out the box”, as in “records, cassettes and CD’s are being shipped to record stores, and they are flying out the box because everyone wants a copy.” Those days are over, because obtaining music from a physical store is not the sole option. You don’t need a physical item either.
Is it the quality of the music? Is Somethin’ About Kreay that bad? Let’s be honest: this is the era where shitty music can be celebrated as the next Beatles, and the shittiest music in the world have often climbed to the higher end of the charts. Shitty music is king, we all know this, so if her music was crap to someone, it’s still good, decent, or great to her fans. Her fans should have supported her, and it seems some did, just not as expected. People were looking at some of the artists who worked with her on the album, Diplo, Kid Cudi, and Yung Berg, among others, and wondered what happened? Was it her collaborators, or something else?
Before I start getting negative replies and hate mail, I am not saying that Kreayshawn’s music is equal to that of Velvet Underground or Captain Beefheart. I am merely looking at album sales. What happens if her album gets a boost from the backlash it and she are receiving? What if she gets the “pity sex” treatment in that every other name artists will want to create remixes with her, as a means to promote the album? You will hear her get more hits if Rick Ro$$, Karmin, or Jessie J want to help, but will that help? Will anyone come to the/her rescue? Does the album need rescuing at all? What if, for some reason, a slow and steady buzz comes to the album? What happens if it takes a year for it to sell massively? Will critics say “this was all a part of her plan, I knew she had it in her” or “this was just publicity to promote it”? If so, then one will be able to ask those critics why they didn’t praise her the first time around. Only time will tell. If the album is truly a flop, and if Kreayshawn did indeed get the kind of advance from Columbia that was reported by the press, then she will be laughing to the bank for awhile. We also know that this is major label business, which means with “Gucci Gucci”, the label will be able to use that for everything from tampon commercials to use for trailers about war, so they will be able to make back the money they invested in her. That of course depends on what kind of deal she has too, because if sales don’t progress, she’ll most likely be dropped from Columbia. It would not surprise me if the label decided to get producers and remixers to spruce up things, but Columbia also needs to make an effort in promoting it. If they are promoting it, it seems they’re not doing it that well.
People like to shine the spotlight on stardom and fame, and when someone doesn’t get it, they’re immediately condemned as if they were being pelted by rocks. I’ll admit that I am not a fan of her music, but I respect her for creating music and participating in the process of being an artist. Being an artist means taking the risk of overwhelming praise and ridicule. Maybe Kreayshawn is the kind of person who brushes it off, doesn’t give a fuck, may be thinking “this is only a week, give it time.” But there is a person behind the persona, the one who also has to put time and effort into making Kreayshawn who “she” is. Will the person get credited for becoming a film director, or someone who simply loves what she may excel in? Or are people always going to hate her because she’s Kreayshawn? Don’t have sympathy for the devil, because what may be puzzling you is the nature of the game. Only time will tell.