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Wow. I really thought that Jessica Suarez's Pitchfork review of Tegan and Sara's The Con—with its opening line, "Tegan and Sara should no longer be mistaken for tampon rock, a comparison only fair because of the company they kept"—would be able to hold onto its status as the most infuriating piece of music writing I've read this month, especially being so close to the end of July. But Fox News entertainment writer Roger Friedman snuck in just in time to win the title with his summation of Kelly Clarkson's feud with Clive Davis over her album My December. Here's what Friedman had to say: "Clarkson gets points for trying out her chops as a songwriter, but demerits for not following anyone's advice, trying to take on the record industry's most astute executive maybe of all time and acting like a 25-year-old (which is, in fact, her age.)" Keep in mind that he's discussing an album that's already sold close to 800,000 copies despite her label head publicly refusing to endorse it. Not to mention the fact that Clarkson's biggest hit, "Since U Been Gone", came out of Clarkson striking out on her own to nail a harder pop-rock sound, and not by any of Davis's own big ideas.
I wouldn't go so far as to say that Kelly Clarkson is one of my favorite musicians, but I respect what she's trying to do. If Clive Davis would get out her way and let her do her thing, she might be able to get out of the factory-singer game, establish a sustainable career as a real artist, and, who knows, maybe make some really good music. But that probably won't happen. The news just came out that Clarkson will deliver Davis a "pop" album sometime next year.