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Just about everyone knows someone who has been bullied, in ways big and small. Understandably, though, many victims are reluctant to speak about their experiences. We found some who aren't.
By HANNAH ELLIOTT, Robinson High
I stay away from the Top 40, but there are a handful in that category I can stand . . . at least the first 20 times I hear them on the radio.
One artist I don’t yet have a stalwart grudge against is Bruno Mars. His passionate and powerful vocals are fervent and stand out in a world of Auto-Tune, mediocre messes. The Hawaii native has a strong-minded voice that dominates the chorus on songs such as Nothin’ On You by B.o.B and Billionaire by Travie McCoy, his first two claims to fame.
His time as mere guest vocal is over, and his name now stands alone. Bruno Mars’ two mega-hits Just the Way You Are and Grenade from his first album Doo-Wops & Hooligans spill with passionate and heartfelt lyrics of commitment and unconditional love, but his newest, Unorthodox Jukebox, is crammed with songs that are quite promiscuous, to say the least.
Young Girls starts out the album with the easily recognizable and serenading voice that hooks you immediately, with a smooth musical arrangement and pounding drumbeat that creates a throwback vibe. It is like a carefully placed disclaimer for the coming elaboration on his love for young girls.
Locked Out of Heaven is the song destined to enter the overplayed category soon enough; I’m done with it at least. The song is reminiscent, to put it nicely, of songs by the Police. Bruno Mars doesn’t deny the similarities, but he definitely hasn’t owned up to aping them, saying to MTV, "I don’t think it initially tried to sound like anybody else, but I picked up the guitar and just started playing." Recycling is the new fad, right?
Gorilla is the epitome of Bruno Mars’ bombastic image, and for many artists this reputation could be a deal breaker, but he can pull it off. He is worthy enough of comparisons to Michael Jackson, Prince and Elvis to make his flashiness acceptable.
Bruno Mars has a certain charm that keeps him separated from the "15 minutes of fame" clubbers who litter the top of the charts. His effortlessly pretentious vocals and lyrics are still likeable, and the modern production accompanying him is strong enough to reserve him a longer-lasting respect than three-quarters of the dreary competition, even if he is more overplayed than all of them combined.