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I'm anticipating the new Christina Aguilera album and I'm not ashamed of it

 

I have to admit, when Christina Aguilera debuted "Genie In A Bottle" in 1999, I liked it. Granted, I was 15, but even then I didn't exactly dig Britney Spears, and thought it was kind of ridiculous that Aguilera was lumped into the same category as her. I still like Aguilera, I will sing along to her songs without (much) shame and I respect some of the music she has made over the last 10 years. She is a not-so-guilty pleasure of mine because I have always seen her as the one mega pop star who is actually singing about something and even being empowering in the process. However, recently the the internets have been abuzz with chatter about who Aguilera is collaborating with on her next album, thusly granting me permission to exclaim how I've felt all along. Word is, Aguilera is bringing in Ladytron, Goldfrapp and the where-the-hell-have-they-been Le Tigre to work on what is being called an "electronic" album. Hmm. Win!

Aguilera does not immediately come to mind when one thinks of feminist artists, yet her persona and lyrics are arguably far more progressive than those she was compared with almost synonymously in the '90s on the basis of blonde hair and poppy, catchy tunes. A Portland Mercury article from 2004 touts Aguilera as a Riot Grrl. The F-Word reviewed Aguilera's album Stripped in 2003 and celebrated her exploration of beauty standards, sexism and stud/whore double standards set to beats that could be appreciated in the mainstream. In 2001, Aguilera remade "Lady Marmalade" with Pink, Missy Elliot and Lil Kim, all women who pushed the proverbial envelope at the time and who are also, arguably, feminist in their own ways.

Her maturation from a peroxide-haired teenager to maybe-feminist to working with artists whose feminism is not debatable, signifies that maybe this is who she always was, but only now is in a position to fully express it. She was very young when she released her first album, presumably packaged the way she was due to a demand for attractive teenaged pop stars who fit a certain formula, which raises the question of if she originally perpetuated the stereotype of "attractive" she later sought out to crush. Can we really blame the kids who are corporate tools for the negative standards advanced by their image? I'm not sure. I have high hopes for this new record, partly because, as I stated before, I am a fan. But maybe, just maybe, Aguilera will transform once more, and the question of "Is she or isn't she?" will finally be answered.

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Comments

6 comments have been made. Post a comment.

yes

I am SO excited for her album. I'm already a huge fan, and "Can't Hold Us Down" helped me become aware of the sex double standard (I think I was in 6th grade when I started listening to Stripped), so she's always had a place in my feminist heart. Finding out the Le Tigre news made me high.

...what??

...what??

spamage

we get our fair share of that here. christina aguilera + checking your credit score = wednesday, apparently.

SO agreed!

I have also been a huge fan of Christina Aguilera since day one, and totally agree that she was unfairly lumped into the same category as Britney Spears, Jessica Simpson, etc. The combination of the voice and lyrics make me a huge fan. (Hell, I'll admit, I even saw her in concert for her Back to Basics tour.)

Don't forget she collaborated with Sia too. I'm SOOOO excited to hear the resulting album.

LeTigre's back together?

I thought LeTigre broke up when their record co. ditched 'em. This news makes my day!

As for "Xtina," I admit to have thought of her as one of those "pop tarts," but one of the better ones. She was lumped-in with Britney Spears because they were Mousketeers together, along with Justin Timberlake, and they all "broke out" on the music scene at around the same time. But I definitely find this intriguing ... excellent collaboration choices, indeed.