Thankfully, I've only received a tolerable amount of negative and expletive-filled e-mail regarding my Puff Daddy site -- and only one disagreeing guestbook entry. However, I recently ran across a "pro-Puff Daddy" website somewhere out there spouting this garbage:
"I'm so sick of people that diss cool people like Puff Daddy. Those guys are just a bunch of jealous ugly people or racists...visit these ANTI-sites and diss them back. Send them mean things and cuss them out -- and then they'll get so angry that they'll get rid of their websites!"
How positively enlightening and overflowing with maturity. Here is my response to this line of thinking (which I also took the time to enter in the above "Pro Puffy" fan's guestbook):
I beg to differ. We are not, as you claim:
1) jealous (Excuse me, but what exactly does Puffy have to be jealous of?!? Good lawyers? He couldn't even keep J-Lo. She literally married the next guy that came along.)
2) ugly people (See for yourself...we're not supermodels obviously...but no warts or anything.)
3) racists (My best friend from childhood is black, but should that tidbit even be necessary? The correct answer is, "No - it should not be necessary to mention and doing so looks like you're trying a bit too hard to prove a point." But you'd be surprised how many e-mails I've received stating that I would never even speak to a black person, much less share the same room with them. And that simply is not true. You can be a music critic without being a racist. Some people fail to realize this. But then again, looking at my photo, you'd probably never be able to tell I'm part American-Indian either. So there's another snap-judgement you most likely made about me that was proved wrong.)
I wouldn't pay to see Puff Daddy or own his music, any more than I would pay to hear a local no-talent cover band on a Friday night. When you have to sample over 90% of your work -- face it -- rich or poor, you're a lame cover band. No more, no less, IMHO.
Now that is not to say that all covers are evil either -- there are some great covers out there! (A few that come to mind.....REM's version of "Superman", The Presidents of the United States of America's version of "Video Killed the Radio Star", Frente's version of "Bizarre Love Triangle", Orgy's version of "Blue Monday", Fear Factory's "Cars", Erasure's entire "Abba-esque" CD, etc.)
It's also not to say that sampling as a whole is bad. There are hip-hop and rap artists that do it well. Take the Beastie Boys for example. (Yes, I realize they are white. Get over it.) A Beastie Boys track (specifically post-"License to Ill") SOUNDS like a Beastie Boys track, regardless of whatever sampling they might use. They write their own music. They play their own instruments. And they don't rely on someone else's vocals and beat to make up the music's "soul", unlike the Puffster.
Now as for this advice to your site viewers: "Send them mean things and cuss them out, and then they'll get so angry that they'll get rid of their sites!"... If someone wants to enter an EDUCATED debate with me on the merits of Puff Daddy, then so be it. But don't come whining to me like a little kid who's just learned to use four-letter words. If you want to debate like an adult -- ACT like an adult. Otherwise, leave me alone, and/or get your own free homepage to push your beliefs and dispense your hate.
It's going to take a lot more than childish bullying, spamming, gratuitous cursing, and/or ignorance to shut this site down... This web site's mailbag only proves that point. I've been here four years now and I'm not going anywhere. Get used to it.
As for those of you who state, "Puffy would never sample the shit you've got listed in the first place. It's just a bunch of lame 80s white bands." Hello, McFly?!? Why do you think I started this site in the first place? Because the very music I listen to, and consider to be "great classics", are the very songs Puffy is sampling. Go look at his samples again.
Matthew Wilder - "Break My Stride" - 80s song, white guy. The Police - "Every Breath You Take" - 80s song, white band. "Kashmir" - Led Zeppelin - 70s song, white band. "Let's Dance" - David Bowie - 80s song, white guy. "Notorious" - Duran Duran - 80s song, white band.
Have I made my point yet? Because if not, there really is no hope for you, now is there?
The following was sent privately to one of my web site visitors:
Thank you for remaining so respectful in your letter/card to me. I cannot begin to tell you how much I appreciate that.
I just wanted you to know that yes, I do listen to quite a bit of "hip hop" and rap (although it would most likely be considered "old school"). Here's a quick flip through part of my CD collection...Beastie Boys, LL Cool J, Biz Markie, Coolio, Skee Lo, Run DMC, Positive K, Beck...ok that one's a stretch but it is spoken word...as well as Henry Rollins, Too Short, 2 Live Crew, Tone Loc, Sir Mix A lot, Onyx, Young MC, Digital Underground, Dr. Dre, Eminem, Snoop Dog, House of Pain...shall I continue? Not to bad for a white girl, huh? ;-)
I have every right to express my opinion (which by the way is not personal "hate" but rather artistic disgust) against Puff Daddy...because although this web site is located on the 'net, I am located in a free country. Just as I choose not to listen to Puff's music, you also do not have to read my site. You can click on the back button of your browser and surf on your merry way...
If Puff were to come out with an album featuring ALL OF HIS OWN music and material...my opinion of Puff Daddy would probably change. But I ask you, what other performer could get away with (and be praised for) EVERY song they produce being a cover? Not many... As much as I hate teen-fluff bands like Back Street Boys and NSync (and from "my day", Color me Badd and New Kids on the Block) -- I at least have to give them the credit for performing original music (even if they didn't write it themselves).
There comes a point for every TRUE artist when they need to challenge themselves artisticly. Even Madonna took voice lessons and fought to win the role in Evita. Listen to the progression of her music (and her voice) from albums such as "Like a Virgin" on through "Ray of Light"... Where is this growth in Puff Daddy? It seems the older he gets, the more he copies.
Giving props to the original artists? Whatever! Why doesn't he do something original so lame cover bands/artists can give props to HIM. Laying a "yeah...hell yeah..." track over existing music IS NOT TALENT in my opinion -- and never will be!
That's all I'm saying...
Thanks for writing!
Now -- do you think I'm "stuck in the 80s"? If so, click here and I will prove you wrong...