OFFSTAGE: Rebecca Black Is No Taylor Swift

(CMT Offstage keeps a 24/7 watch on everything that’s happening with country music artists behind the scenes and out of the spotlight.)

Rebecca Black knows her days of the week. Good for her. But that’s pretty much the only nice thing I have to say about her and her song, “Friday.” Black is the virally-popular 13-year-old who recently released the world’s most annoying pop song about nothing other than looking forward to the weekend. And to add insult to injury, she told Teen Vogue the singer she sounds most like is Taylor Swift. I couldn’t disagree more. If Black sounds like anyone on this song, it’s R&B singer T-Pain. Her voice has that robotic, synthesized style that sounds like a vocoder did all the work. But Black did say she sounds most like Swift when her voice hasn’t been, um, enhanced. “People tell me I sound like Taylor Swift. Once you hear my sound without any adjustments — just my raw voice — it’s unique,” she said. But the other huge difference between the two is that when Swift sings, she’s connected to the lyrics. Because she wrote them. Black did not write her song, so that only adds to the mechanical nature of her vocals. Maybe when she outgrows Cocoa Pebbles and America’s Next Top Model and Forever 21, I will be able to take her seriously as a singer. But for now, I refuse to see any similarities between Black and Swift. And I also refuse to jump on the bandwagon and pay money for the song. She has sold more than 87,310 downloads of “Friday” since it was released two weeks ago. But once the curiosity wanes, I think Black’s 15 minutes of fame will probably be over. Then again, the song itself may turn into something of a cult classic, judging by all the spoofs and covers it has generated. There’s even a country version by the Abrams Brothers which is worth checking out at least once.

Alison makes her living loving country music. She's based in Chicago, but she's always leaving her heart in Nashville.