Justin Bieber's "Boyfriend" And The Death Of The Word "Swag"

Justin Bieber's "Boyfriend" And The Death Of The Word "Swag"

Sunday night, when Justin Bieber's new song "Boyfriend" dropped, the social-media landscape at large began comparing it to the work of Justin Timberlake, the music industry's somewhat dormant leading man.

I was sad, because I like the Timberlake.

Justin Bieber, I bought Justin Timberlake records, I watched Justin Timberlake videos, I followed Justin Timberlake on Twitter. Justin Bieber, you're no Justin Timberlake.

The opening is fun enough, with that weird lone techno whistle, his new deeper register -- pillow voice for the girls -- jarring folks who only know him as a cherubic-voiced teen crooner. And apparently chicks these days like chilling by fires and eating fondue. Is Bieber a time traveler from the '70s?

But then he starts using the word "swag" as filler, like how your mother uses bread crumbs in her turkey stuffing. A placeholder if you will.

"That's not swag at all," said the nearly 30-year-old music critic.

You keep saying this word "swag." I don't think this word means what you think it means.

Inconceivably not swag at all.

The best part is the "Buzz Lightyear" reference in one of his raps. In a few years, I can't wait for a teenage pop star to tell a girl in a song that he gonna "do her weird like Yo Gabba Gabba" or at least caress her down "like we was Bella and Edward."

Pop culture is fun. Life is fun.

What's even stranger is that I have been a big defender of Bieber here on Rocks Off. I stayed up and attended the first midnight screening of Justin Bieber: Never Say Never -- in 3D, no less. Yes, I had a chaperone, but the late hour and the theater's location wasn't conducive to masses of screaming girls.


I found him to be charming, a tad immature, and not at all worth the hatred and vitriol that true "rockers" throw at him. How many of you were sucky losers when you were 16 years old? You haven't been into Leonard Cohen and Wire since you were in seventh grade, you bespectacled grackle?

Like I said last week, humorless buttholes will be the first against the wall when the revolution begins. What the men don't know, 18,940,755 Twitter followers understand. Oops, I mean 18,940,636.

To tell you the truth, I want him to succeed for some reason, but it sucks that people are throwing the Timberlake tag on him mainly because he's white -- a Canadian, no less -- and his name is also Justin.

I don't know, I think "Boyfriend" is more comparable to defanged Robin Thicke, or at worst, Eamon.

"Boyfriend" will be on the Beebs' upcoming album Believe, which still doesn't have a hard 2012 release date. Drake and Kanye West have already been announced as guests on the disc, which is also getting help from jet-setting DJ and party monster Diplo.

Follow Rocks Off on Facebook and on Twitter at @HPRocksOff.

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