Ark Music Factory
By Javier Blánquez (in “dickhead mode”)
Rebecca Black, the biggest viral sensation in 2011 so far and possibly the most shared joke of all times apart from the “Do you like movies about gladiators?” quote from “Airplane!”. The 13-year old, who has already got 43 million hits on YouTube thanks to what’s considered to be something like “the worst pop song ever” because of the Auto-Tune abuse, disastrous composition and ridiculous lyrics, has brought to light an obscure Californian label called Ark Music Factory, a company that looks to discover new adolescent talents and always goes about the same way: it sticks a terrible rapper in the videos, offers its services to rich parents in exchange for a big bag of cash to produce clips, trusting in the Internet to spread the kid’s song.
Today, Friday, Ark Music Factory are quick to deny the rumours about the not so transparent way of working and give their official version of what they do, how they do it and what their intentions are working with teenagers. That’s why we’ve extended this list, not to celebrate Rebecca Black –little we can add to what’s already been said about this global trending topic–, but what was there before: Ark Music Factory has a wide range of similar girls with videos just as dodgy and songs just as ugly. These are our favourites. Bazzinga!
1. Rebecca Black: “Friday”This must be number 1. The best thing in the video are the braces of the background singers, although the rest is pretty good as well.
2. Sarah Maugaotega: “Take It Easy”A beauty who would love to be Shakira, although it’s likely there won’t be any Gerard Piqué coming into her life and she’ll have to make do with the Nevada State pétanque champion. Good job on the extras, it must be said.
3. Ariana Dvornik: “Fly Away”She wants to be Nelly Furtado when she grows up, but it’s one thing to have Timbaland dancing by your side, and another thing entirely to get stuck in a school play with a bloke with a horse’s mouth and a couple of background singers imitating Girls Aloud.
4. Britt Rutter: “Without Your Love”Had the video been directed by Jonas Akerlund, we would have seen some product placement of social network Plenty Of Fish instead of a cheap imitation of Facebook. But since it isn’t, we get this. We’re fans of the plush animals in the background and of the rapper who comes out to annoy us a bit.
5. Jolie Adamson: “Armour”A wannabe extra for the sixth season of “The Hills” imitating Lasgo’s “Surrender”. Nice job on the cave, the bikini and the bloke, who presented himself at the casting for a Katy Perry video but came last.
6. Danika: “Danika”She’s half a metre too short and 40kg too light to be Rihanna, but she makes an effort not to be the only girl in the world without a Euro-trance tune. You can see they went all out on the clothes and visual effects.
7. CJ Fam: “Ordinary Pop Star”Surrounded by black guys who look like Common or Bruno Mars and hysterical fans that make the girl feel like a first-rate pop star. With a bit of luck she’ll have the imitation of lip synching by Keenan Cahill, who won’t have to get into character for the occasion.
8. Alana Lee: “Butterflies”With a bit of luck she is still in time to become the new Hilary Duff, the blonde who’s loved by her parents, a good student and a romantic who’ll never turn into Slutwave-era Miley Cyrus. In any case, it’s hard to imagine “Butterflies” in the leader of a redux of “Laguna Beach”.
9. Abby Victor: “Crush On You”She’s going for Avril Lavigne; the latest Avril Lavigne, that is, the one nobody likes. She also shares a physical resemblance with Taylor Swift (-70%), and with all those factors to her disadvantage her only option was to play a dance diva role with a Euro-beat production. Sounds like thunder!
10. Sabrina: “My Reflection”Tremble, Ciara, the new Brandy’s here and you’re going down. Those dance moves, that elegance and that voice; she’s the new R&B sensation. In fact, her phone never stops ringing and the screen says “Jay-Z”. This of course only happens in her dreams.
Are you a fan of Rebecca Black? Take our hand and come with us: we present you the ten worst videos from Ark Music Factory, the ones who launched her to fame and made her the cruellest joke of the year. Welcome to the museum of teen-pop horror.