When Robert Palmer’s video of his mega-hit “Addicted To Love” on MTV in 1985 it caused a major sensation for its obvious sexuality. But the song, as well as the video, was such an instant hit, and Palmer was already such an established and well respected singer/songwriter that it was taken as mere “tongue in cheek” humor.
The exact same thing can, and should, be said about the video for “Blurred Lines” which is a blatant rip-off of Robert Palmer’s “Addicted To Love.” The only difference between the two videos is that the girls were totally naked in “Blurred Lines.” The terrific filmmaker Richard Curtis pays tribute to the “pouty girls backing up the singer” genre in his much-loved romantic comedy, Love Actually.
Almost thirty years later, Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams were taken to court and ordered to pay damages to the estate of Marvin Gaye because they more or less stole his song “Got To Give It Up.” What I never understood is why Pharrell, who is a brilliant businessman, as well as an incredible songwriter and producer, didn’t just announce that the song was an homage to the great Marvin Gaye, and negotiate a fee, or a portion of the royalties to Marvin Gaye’s family before he released the song.
But rather than make this a condemnation of the authenticity of “Blurred Lines’“, I want this post to give kudos to “Addicted To Love” as a strong, guitar-driven song that successfully blurred the lines between dance music and rock ‘n roll.
Watch the video, listen to the tune….and let me know what you think.