Hall 1101-351

Albert Daddah
Dr. Carrie Hall

Love Lies: Why it’s Success is so Imperative in the Music Industry Today

You may or may not be familiar with the artists Khalid and Normani but they are working towards being two of the biggest artists of this generation to change the music industry. Khalid is one of those artists that just popped up out of nowhere. He is now one of the biggest artist of this generation with millions of records sold worldwide. Normani started in the group known today as Fifth Harmony. They also had huge hits and sold millions around the world, but after some years in 2018 they decided to break up. In February 2018 the song “Love Lies”was released. It was a collab by the two artist but was also Normani’s first solo song apart from Fifth Harmony. The song was not even intended to be released or get as big as it did. The song was not Normani’s single because she was still in Fifth Harmony and it was not Khalid’s single so their record label (RCA) placed it on the soundtrack for the movie “Love, Simon” and was released as a single from the soundtrack. However “Love Lies” was rarely ever associated with the movie and stood on its own and went onto be one of the biggest songs of 2018.

“Love Lies” took a while to pop on the charts. It debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in February at number 43 with 22,000 downloads and 11 million streams in its first week (HeadlinePlanet.com). This is pretty good for a song by two newer artists. However the song skyrocketed after Normani and Khalid performed it at the 2018 Billboard Music Awards in May after an impressive dance break by Normani that stunned the crowd and gained attention from celebrities in the crowd and watching from home. It was one of the most talked about performance and brought a new audience to the song and the artists. It rose up the charts slowly since the performance in May and reached a peak of number 9 on the Billboard Hot 100 in September (HeadlinePlanet.com).

Considering that “Love Lies” is an R&B song made by two new black artists and had so much success even with minimal promotion is amazing. Especially with the state of music today. It is rare to see this happen. Nowadays Hip-Hop and Pop music is what’s dominating the charts. If you take a look at the top ten in the past weeks you’ll see Drake, Travis Scott, Ariana Grande, Post Malone, Cardi B, Taylor Swift and others. All of them either rappers or pop singers. But where all the R&B artists. Nowadays there are only a handful of R&B that get the spotlight and actually chart. We have The Weeknd, Sza, Ella Mai, Khalid, Normani and then maybe we can include Ty Dolla $ign or Chris Brown or one of those other R&B artists that get one random hit. Other than that they are the main R&B artists that chart if they can get in the top 100. R&B artists are very unappreciated in today’s music industry unlike the 90s and 00s when R&B was sort of the standard. There are many great R&B artist that don’t get the shine they deserve but instead trash rappers with auto tune and repetitive pop singers that lack talent get top ten hits every time they release a new song.

The under appreciation of R&B artists and songs is why the success of “Love Lies” is baffling and amazing. It is the best selling R&B song released in 2018 and one of the most successful songs of 2018. The only other R&B songs that dominated this year were “Call Out My Name” by The Weeknd, “Boo’d Up” by Ella Mai and “All The Stars” by Kendrick Lamar and Sza which all had short runs. However “Love Lies” was released in February and is still in the top 20 almost a year later. Another amazing accomplishment by “Love Lies” is it reaching number one on pop radio. Pop radio is the biggest radio format and has the power to determine a songs success. As stated in the Rolling Stone article/ interview with Normani, “But Normani held her own, and so did “Love Lies.” After spending a record-breaking 24 weeks on the Billboard Pop Songs radio airplay chart, the lovelorn scorcher slow-burned all the way to Number One”. “Love Lies” has broken many records and has had many milestones but this is a surprising one . Again with “Love Lies” being a R&B song by two black artists it was never even a thought for it to chart high on pop radio let alone go number 1 since it is a format that is typically dominated by white pop artists. In the article “Charting Black Excellence | The significance of Normani and Khalid’s Love Lies hitting No.1 on pop radio” for Revolt.com, Da’Shan Smith states, “As the Chief Content Officer of Genius, Brendan Frederick, tweeted in response to @chartdata: “Funny that Drake hasn’t hit #1 on the Pop Songs chart (a.k.a. the ‘Mainstream Top 40’ chart) this year, despite being the most popular artist of 2018 by a huge margin. Probably because ‘pop music’ is a racist construct created by the music industry to uphold white supremacy.” In that same thread, he’d go on to highlight: “None of the 6 rap songs that hit #1 on the Hot 100 in 2017 also topped Pop Songs. In fact, no Black artist has had a #1 Pop Song since 2016!”. Brendan and Da’Shan make great points. The song was not expected to perform win over pop fans since they typically don’t favor black artists or R&B music. Once again solidifying that Love Lies success is a moment for R&B songs and artists. Even artists like Beyoncé and Rihanna could not reach the number one spot on pop radio in the last two years. So even though it did not go number one on the Hot 100 chart, number one on pop radio is a huge deal because that is based on the listeners opinions.

The reason that I think Love Lies is so important is because R&B music deserves to shine and deserves its credit. Love Lies is a song that represents the whole community of R&B songs. It show that the music industry is open to versatility. It gives a chance for more black R&B artists to be successful in the music industry. It may take some time but I do believe that gradually we will see a more diverse group of songs dominating the charts and taking over. A mixture of Pop, Hip Hop, R&B, etc, all types of artists and songs getting their chance at success. I think now R&B artists can start being more appreciated and music listeners will take more interest in R&B songs. “Love Lies” to me has made R&B music mainstream again and with times changing listeners taste will change too and it looks like it’s already beginning.

 

 

Bibliography

Cantor, Brian. “Khalid & Normani’s ‘Love Lies’ Debuts On Billboard Hot 100.” Google Search, Google, 26 Feb.2018, www.google.com/amp/s/headlineplanet.com/home/2018/02/26/khalid-normanis-love-lies-debuts-billboad-hot-100/amp/.

Cantor, Brian. “Khalid & Normani’s ‘Love Lies’ Enters Top 10 On Billboard Hot 100.” Google Search, Google, 4 Sept. 2018, www.google.com/amp/s/headlineplanet.com/home/2018/09/04/khalid-normanis-love-lies-enters-top-10-billboard-hot-100/amp/.

Grant, Sarah. “Normani on ‘Love Lies’ Going Number One, Her Relationship Style, Writing for Women.” Google Search, Google, 19 Sept. 2018, www.google.com/amp/s/www.rollingstone.com/music/music-features/normani-love-lies-number-one-nicki-minaj-fifth-harmony-khalid-725154/amp/.

Henry, Keryce Chelsi. “Khalid And Normani’s ‘Love Lies’ Makes Billboard Chart History.” Google Search, Google, 17 Sept. 2018, www.google.com/amp/s/www.forbes.com/sites/kerycehenry/2018/09/17/khalid-and-normanis-love-lies-makes-billboard-chart-history/amp/.

Smith, Da’Shan. “Charting Black Excellence | The Significance of Normani and Khalid’s ‘Love Lies’ Hitting No.1 on Pop Radio.” REVOLT TV, REVOLT TV, 24 Sept. 2018, revolt.tv/stories/2018/09/18/charting-black-excellence-significance-normani-khalids-love-lies-hitting-no1-pop-radio-07006a77f6.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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