I've never been in one of these meetings, but one has to assume this is how it goes down:
Idea Haver: OK, so here's my idea. This new song we have on our hands, it's great, but I want to make sure it gets big. You know, VIRAL. Like the Gangnam Styles. So here's what we're going to do:
PUT. HASHTAGS. EVERYWHERE.
And I mean everywhere. Tweets, commercials, T-shirts, music videos, song titles, album names, anything we can. If we do it, and completely overwhelm the public with this plan, we can't fail. Like the Gangnam Styles. OK, LET'S DO IT.
Anita Baker covers Tyrese's hit from 1999 and makes it very much her own. I really hoped this would be a cover of Massive Attack's "Lately," because Ms. Baker would absolutely kill it doing Shara Nelson's part. Anita Baker is a national treasure, a Detroit Lions fan, and one of my favorite celebrities on Twitter. The first label she was ever on was called Ariola Records, which makes me laugh because I am an idiot. Last night she simultaneously live-tweeted the debate and the Lions-Bears game and it was glorious. She makes use of caps lock when appropriate, loves to drink cups of coffee, and always ends with her initials, "ab." A sample tweet from Anita: "FREE GIFT!! Limited Time offer! Get it NOW. While it lasts!! His GIFT...of This Brand New Day!! :) ab"
Best YouTube Comment: "The Queen of Quiet Storm —AnneBoleynMarquess
Now that our nation’s dueling, mediocre, pop-detecting machines, American Idol and The Voice, have come to positively underwhelming conclusions, ABC is filling the summer gap with Duets. Featuring four superstar performers — the word “superstar” is used loosely and often on this show — Duets hopes to discover the world’s best duet partner (we think?) by having Kelly Clarkson, John Legend, Sugarland’s Jennifer Nettles, and Robin Thicke perform their biggest hits (and “biggest” “hits”) alongside relative unknowns. Other pertinent facts: This show is hosted by former MTV VJ and ghost of your youth Quddus; the tagline is “Will you duet with me?”; it is nearly impossible to understand how one is meant to win the show at the conclusion of its nine episodes. In other words, your Thursdays nights are all set for the rest of the summer. Sad singing-show addicts Juliet Litman and Sean Fennessey watched last night’s inaugural episode in search of rhyme, reason, an easily understood voting system, and some answers about Jennifer Nettles’s face.
Scoring no. 1s. Breast-feeding in public. Your fave could never! Grade: B Best YouTube Comment: "I sang this song great. Very hard song to sing. Me and Beyonce are the only people who can sing it good." —MrRodriguez1956
Rocket Juice and the Moon feat. Erykah Badu, “Hey Shooter”
So you're maybe thinking, “Hey, Grantland, didn't you just warn me that Damon Albarn's new Flea-and-Tony Allen-featuring band Rocket Juice and the Moon was escalating the oddball musical-collaboration arms race to dangerous heights? Now you're offering me one of their tracks for my listening pleasure? What is happening here, Grantland?” First, stop calling me Grantland. I have a real name. Second: What is happening here? Erykah Badu is happening here.