Relevancy in music is an inexact science. Some master it developing fruitful, and in some cases, legendary careers. Some don’t. Having been a major player in pop culture since the days of the first Clinton administration, Pharrell finds himself firmly planted in the first category. More recently, however, Skateboard P’s tidal wave of success has mirrored batting averages posted by the late, great Tony Gwynn with hit song, after smash feature after stellar soundtrack placement. Finding another artist with a better track record the past 18 months isn’t impossible. But it’s damn sure next to it.
1. Since the 2013 Grammys, P’s been nominated for eight awards. He’s won four, including Album of the Year for his role in Daft Punk’s Random Access Memories, Record of the Year and Producer of the Year.
3. His latest album, G I R L, should be gold by the end of the summer.
4. Officially or not, “Happy” became the world’s anthem with over 10 million in worldwide sales.
Perhaps the only speed bump was his album cover which, in retrospect, felt more like social media’s “target of the day” than a legit controversy. Nevertheless, G I R L has been album worth revisiting the past few weeks, in particular the seven-minute stretch from “Lost Queen’s” syrupy, slow dance-inspiring second half to the end of the Alicia Keys-featured “Know Who You Are.”
Neither are embodied as 2014′s pinnacle in terms of its best song, but together the duo personally rank near the year’s apex of tranquil sequences. In other words, there may not be another back-to-back arrangement since New Year’s Day that’s made me tap my feet and/or breakout my Grammy-worthy, “Fergie-mixed-with-Jesus,” voice more than this one. Feel-good music does that. And how “Know Who” hasn’t received a video yet is one of life’s biggest mysteries at the moment right next to what gave President Obama the gall to think he can walk in a Chipotle as if he owns the place.
The weather’s warmer. The nights are longer, meaning, in many cases, the drinks become colder and the J’s rolled tighter. Let said sequence serve as the nightcap at next weekend’s Independence Day cookout or tonight’s late-night ride on the train or drive home. There’s a chance these might make more sense then.