Monday, 6 July 2009

The Guilty Pleasure

On many peoples mp3 player (or music playing device) there are often a few tracks that you would rather the world did not know you listened to. Unfortunately these things have a way of getting out. Perhaps your soundproof earphones are not that insulated and the rest of the bus now knows that you listened to B*witched or Bad Boys Inc.

All are that persons deeply held musical taste which they have often taken the time to rip and copy to their mp3 iJukebox thingy. What I do dislike is being sneering or ironic about it (especially those awful "ironic" cover versions that bands do on the Jo Wiley show), describing it as a guilty pleasure. It is used to legitimise poor works or as an apology for liking unfashionable works. The phrase pops up frequently on Lastfm among many other lazy or poor tags (.

If you like it you like it you shouldn't have to coat it layers of irony and pretend its really bad. The choice of music is a deeply personal thing, the statistics on my own player have the kind of bands certain Radio 1 dj's claim give you good taste and those which don't.

I would like to see under my totalitarian rule the phrase "guilty pleasure" banned (along with "journey"). Something is merely a pleasure or not. We can all name several films that are well made and beautifully crafted but we'll all get loads more fun watching George Of The Jungle (watch out for that tree!).


  1. Oh, I can't help using "guilty pleasure" with respect to certain foods....

    I agree with you about the music, though. What's strange is that people do it to appear "cool" when surely it is part of the essence of "cool" not to have to apologise for your taste! Surely you are automatically not "cool" if you worry that others will find your music collection (or whatever) embarrassing?

  2. > B*witched

    Whaddya loike? :-) I can't say I really enjoyed it at the time, but now it raises a smile as a slice of unadulterated pop cheese.

    I don't mind some of the stuff off Live Lounge (is that right?) as often I've enjoyed the original the first time around. Sometimes it's cool to hear a new twist on an older tune.

    It's also odd how stuff once considered cool becomes the icon of naff a few years later. How fickle we are! :)

  3. I found your blog and like what i see! If you are interested, feel free to visit my blog with free feminization hypnosis sessions. You may also add me to your blogroll if you like.


  4. I wouldn't even know where to begin to tag some of the things I'd have on an mp3 player if I had one! If it isn't 12-bar is it still a blues if the author called it one?

    Where to draw the line between "big band" and "swing", between those and "jazz". Does "New Orleans" music include the "Dixieland revival" of the 50's and 60's or only Jelly Roll Morton and King Oliver and their ilk?

    Then there are the bands that began in one genre and made it another...Basie and Ellington come to mind.

    Luckily, no one else is going to care much what I think about it unless I'm lucky and my grandkids decide to save this archive that runs from '78's through albums, 8-tracks, cassettes and CD's.


  5. Thank you all for the comments. I feel the urge to use "guilty pleasure" in the context of food as well. A good point on being cool as well Stephanie.
    B*witched were above all about fun and never tried to be cool. I believe the two sisters are now successful song writers.
    As for tagging, one person's blues is another's country or soul or ... And I would have no idea where to draw the line between big band and swing if anybody wants to draw one.


Feel free to comment Below