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Commentary: Show’s tunes leaving some without glee

Courtesy of MCT

The music industry was the victim of an inexcusable crime Tuesday when once again, “Glee” released an album full of butchered cover songs.

“Glee: The Music presents The Warblers” is an album that tries to do justice to artists ranging from Destiny’s Child to Keane. After “Glee’s” laughable attempt to cover Journey in their season finale medley, I was relieved to see they steered away from songs by more legendary bands.

That was the brief, happy moment before I noticed they’d attempted to cover the Beatles’ “Blackbird.”

I understand “Glee” may have some merit as a television show, but outside of that it’s becoming a nuisance. Yes, the cast members have good voices, however they lack a certain talent that would make their covers at least bearable: emotion.

Steve Perry’s vocals made Journey’s “Faithfully” an icon because when he sang, listeners could hear his heart breaking. Similarly, the vocals of “Don’t Stop Believin'” are saturated with optimism and passion for the music.

When “Glee” took this on they left the whole thing feeling scripted and insincere. Turning “Faithfully” into a duet seemed genius, until I listened and realized neither singer cared about the other, the audience, or the song they were singing. She wasn’t sending all of her “love along the wire,” she would have sent whatever words appeared on the teleprompter and never known the difference.

This became a problem again when they tried to cover “Blackbird.” They all seem to care about getting their own voice out there and making sure people give them the proper “ohs” and “ahs,” but in the process they’ve neglected the music. Littering the background with constant “bom-bom’s” and “do-do’s” detracts from the simplicity that made the song great, and once again, they’ve ruined an iconic piece of music.

If America wants to watch sub-par acting and cheesy musical numbers on TV, then yes, the show serves a purpose. “Glee” is not the first case we’ve seen of this (recall “The Monkees” and “The Partridge Family”). But when I turned on my TV and saw a pair of teenagers tarnishing the image of a 1980s classic, I realized there was a problem.

These people are actors in a, let’s be honest, awful prime-time TV series. They aren’t musicians, they should not be on the radio. Yes, “Don’t Stop Believing” is great, but not after it has been drained of all that once made it good.

Perhaps a song more relevant to our generation will help people see the light. After the death of Michael Jackson, it seems “Thriller” is once again one of everyone’s favorite songs. It’s edgy, it’s full of energy and now it has been “Glee’d.”

“Glee” should have been banned from any media outlet outside of their allotted hour on television each week after these atrocities. Instead, teenagers across America seem to be cheering it on. I’m assuming it’s because they enjoy what they think are good vocals. To these people, I would like to recommend an alternative to degrading classic music: Broadway.

Broadway shows can provide you with vocals that will give you goosebumps, not because it’s a season finale, but because the singers there have talent and emotion. I realize some cast members of “Glee” have come from Broadway. To them, I say, go back. It’s for the good of yourself, uncultured teenagers, and most importantly, music. To the rest of the cast, I recommend acting or voice classes, to some, I recommend both.

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