Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Nope, This Can't Be Good

Ne-Yo is probably one of the best R&B song writers to come around since Babyface. The man is a genius. His biggest talent is his ability to retain a signature sound from song to song, while still catering toward the individual artist's talent, so that songs like Irreplaceable are as big a hit for him as they are for artists like Beyonce. That's a hustle that'll keep him paid long after people realize that his own albums aren't nearly as interesting (which again make him comparable to Babyface).

That being said, I hate that he feels the need to cover his own songs, even going as far as to release an answer to both Irreplaceable and Take A Bow. To me that's the apex of arrogance, and really just boring. I don't wanna hear "to the right, to the right." What does that even mean? Are you moving your shit back in the house, or just scooting it to a different corner?

Janet Jackson's Can't B Good from this year's Discipline was written and produced by Ne-Yo. It's the best ballad Janet has recorded in years. It's perfectly suited for her barely-there vocals, and perhaps purposely reminiscent of her brother's Human Nature. There's a resistant optimism in Janet's voice that matches the song's subject matter perfectly, and the pace of the production is right on point.

In the biggest non-surprise of the year, Ne-Yo leaked his version of the same song, and it just doesn't work at all. Ne-Yo's voice is not suited for this song, and maybe that's just because I heard Janet sing it first. That's not to say that Ne-Yo can't sing, in fact it's probably more to say that Janet can't (at least she doesn't really try to anymore). Where Janet seems vulnerable or hesitant, Ne-Yo is straightforward and even a bit uncomfortable. You need an airy vocal to suit Can't B Good, and Janet has that department on lock.

But, as is clear by now, I'm a Janet groupie ( a respectable groupie, as I recognize that she doesn't always get everything quite right) so maybe it's just me.

Here are both versions for you to decide.

Janet "Can't B Good"

Ne-Yo "This Can't Be Good"

Always listen, never download...

6 comments:

Reggie said...

I agree and disagree....

I feel that Ne-Yo is nowhere as good as Babyface!!!
He still is in the Ashanti-Keri hilson-Scott Storch league....

I just don't like him....But your right about Janet...This is HER song and Ne-Yo sounds stupid with his trying and same crappy vocals...That song is for Janet's thin vocals!!!

I don't think his songwriting skills are good. Same as Chris Brown and Ashanti. I wrote better shit in middle school English!!!

"...Let's have a very merry Christmas
And a happy New Year
Give with love and joy and happiness
And lots of good cheer..."

Merry Christmas from Reggie: The fuckery king!!!:)

Amanda Allison said...

"I don't wanna hear "to the right, to the right." What does that even mean? Are you moving your shit back in the house, or just scooting it to a different corner?" - Hilarious! Lmao.

Ne-Yo is one talented man. I disagree w/the above. His songwriting skills are on point. Have you not heard his latest album? Amazing. One of the best albums of 08, hands down. He has lyrics, voice, and charisma to not only stand out in today's game of generic R&B but last for years to come.



And is it strange that before I read this post, I was singing to myself Janet's "Can't B Good??"

Have a fabulous holiday.

LENORENEVERMORE said...

Great post as always...have a magical, wonderful, memorable Christmas! Let's celebrate!

Ellington 51 said...

"I don't wanna hear "to the right, to the right." What does that even mean? Are you moving your shit back in the house, or just scooting it to a different corner?"

CLASSIC!!!! LMAO. I'm on board with you on this one... I am NOT a Ne-Yo fan. Great songwriter, ugly kid -- keep a hat on & stay behind the scenes writing. I think he just hasn't tapped into enough 'interestesting' vocal dynamics yet. He has ONE dynamic he uses for every song and it gets to be a bit redundant.

Reggie said...

"He has ONE dynamic he uses for every song and it gets to be a bit redundant..."

THANK YOU!!!!:)

If you people think he is a great songwriting, your favorite rapper must be Soulja Boy!!!!

He is trying...I guess...But "Take A Bow" was some shit my little sister wrote back in third grade.....I think I might have to do a post on this.....

Amanda Allison said...

For the record, Soulja boy is NOT my favorite rapper.

I'm all about HOV, thank you very much!


I would wear a knockoff pair of Louboutin's before I ever liked Soulja Boy.