Watch P!nk's Very Relevant "What About Us" Video

P!nk's powerful new video was directed by Georgia Hudson. 

Out of the Y2K class of pop stars, who had their bets on P!nk to have one of the most sustainable careers? And yet, here she is. Seventeen years after her debut, her new single, “What About Us,” holds steady at the top of the U.S. iTunes songs chart, four days after its release Thursday, Aug. 10. In fact, the song soars onto Billboard's Adult Pop Songs radio airplay chart at No. 18, marking the highest debut of P!nk's 22 career entries on the list. It's the highest debut by any song on the chart since Taylor Swift's "Shake It Off" blasted in at a record No. 9 on Sept. 6, 2014. "Us" also arrives on Pop Songs at No. 34. (Both latest charts cover airplay in the Aug. 7–13 tracking period, according to Nielsen Music.)

So what is it about the big-voiced vixen that’s allowed her to carve out such an impressive career? With “What About Us,” the answer is obvious: It’s her raw authenticity.

Let’s rewind to P!nk’s debut, 2000’s Can’t Take Me Home. Several of her peers — Britney Spears, Beyoncé, Christina Aguilera, Kelly Clarkson and Ashanti — saw their debut solo albums and accompanying lead singles top both the Billboard 200 and Hot 100 charts. Meanwhile, Can’t Take Me Home peaked at No. 26. Two tracks from the album cracked the top 10 (“There You Go” at No. 7, and “Most Girls” at No. 4), but neither made it to the chart’s pinnacle.

It’s well documented that Can’t Take Me Home’s slinky, hip-hop sound was the product of her label, and that P!nk enlisted her childhood hero, 4 Non Blondes frontwoman Linda Perry, to help craft a rowdy, pop-rock sound for her sophomore album, Missundaztood. While the album didn’t hit the top spot either (it peaked at No. 6), it manage to clock in at No. 157 on the Billboard 200 Albums Greatest of All Time chart. Not only that, but P!nk found her sound on the LP — one she’s built upon ever since.

P!nk has never chased pop music trends: There isn’t a hit in her catalogue that benefited from the help of a superstar DJ or a rapper du jour. It would be easy to argue that she rode the 2010–2011 wave of self-empowerment jams with “Raise Your Glass,” but was there a more natural fit for the genre’s subject matter? P!nk has been underestimated since her arrival — a song that celebrates underdogs makes sense.

Rather, P!nk’s biggest wins are always the result of moments of honesty. Her first solo trip to No. 1 on the Hot 100, with 2008’s bratty anthem “So What,” was famously about her (temporary) split with husband Carey Hart. Then there’s her career-defining aerial performance of “Glitter in the Air” during the 2010 Grammys. Rather than perform a recent hit, P!nk swerved left and introed the ballad to the masses, explaining to Oprah, “It feels like after ten years, people still don’t know what I do.” Now her name is synonymous with Cirque du Soleil–style stunts.

Even with P!nk’s wild career trajectory, she hardly gets the respect she deserves. It’s possible that her late-bloomer status and ability to dodge sensational tabloid headlines have affected the way she’s measured against fellow singers. But with a collection of 15 top ten Hot 100 hits as a lead artist — more than any of her aforementioned peers (Beyoncé has 16 when featured acts are factored in) — how is it possible that P!nk is still flying under the radar?

With “What About Us,” P!nk once again throws out the rules in favor of authenticity. Rather than kicking off the era with a bombastic single, she opted to lead with something more sobering. At face value, the lyrics read from the perspective of someone in a turbulent relationship, but they can be just as easily interpreted as a plea for guidance in this confusing political climate. Given that P!nk spent the weekend retweeting commentary on the white supremacist violence in Virginia, it’s not far-fetched to think the double meaning was intentional.

The lines “We were willing/We came when you called/But man you fooled us/Enough is enough” could easily be seen through the lens of someone disillusioned with the political process. To be clear, P!nk was incredibly vocal in her support of Hillary Clinton, but it’s possible she looked past party lines to create an anthem that encompasses the hopelessness in the world.

The outspoken singer hasn’t been one to shy away from politics in the past: Take, for instance, her I’m Not Dead ballad “Dear Mr. President,” an open letter addressed to George W. Bush. P!nk has said that she has no intention of releasing a Trump-era follow-up — “there aren’t words for this shameful person” — but given her candor on social issues, it’s impossible that the country’s (and world’s) unrest didn’t affect her writing process. Rather than addressing Trump directly, a song that captures the general state of confusion is a therapeutic alternative.

So will “What About Us” continue P!nk’s impressive streak of wins? Early indicators are pointing to yes. But if you want to underestimate her again, go ahead — she’s used to it.

From the Web

More on Vibe

Bridget Kelly Showcases The Pitfalls Of Summer Love On 'The Great Escape'

Through beautiful summer days at the park coupled with late night tryst, Bridget Kelly is taking us on a trip of the sunny highs and cloudy lows of a summer romance gone wrong in The Great Escape.

The four-minute short film chronicles a love story between Bridget and her leading man Scott Machado. At first, they trade flirty eye glances in a park, and then later meet at a party which then segues into the bedroom. Yet towards the end of the film, she finds out he’s been creeping with another girl.

The Great Escape is made from music off Kelly’s latest five-track EP. The Grammy-award winning artist has continually made it a point to release new summer filled music. Back in 2016, she released a new EP, Summer of 17.  And in spite of The Great Escape being about a love gone wrong, Kelly isn't really pressed about relationships in her own life. She just craves something natural and organic.

"I love being in love. However, if something doesn’t work out or happen for me in the timeframe that I want it to, I’ve learned to just let it go.," she told XO NECOLE. " I now take a less intense approach to relationships because I want it to feel natural; I want it to be a normal progression."

Watch The Great Escape above.

Continue Reading

Lupe Fiasco Releases 'Cripple,' First Video From 'Drogas Wave'

When Lupe Fiasco spoke to VIBE earlier this year, he said he would be releasing videos for his latest album DROGAS Wave soon. Now, he's delivered on that promise.

On Friday, Lupe released the first music video from DROGAS Wave: "Cripple," a highlight from the album's second disc. The visuals, directed by Vann Fulfs, showcase black and white shots around New York City while emphasizing Lupe's lyrics.

“DROGAS Wave is based on a story about a group of slaves that jumped off of a slave ship transporting them from Africa,” Fiasco said while explaining the idea behind his seventh studio album, released last September. “The slaves did not drown, and instead somehow managed to live under the sea. They spent the rest of their underwater existence sinking slave ships. ‘Drogas’ is the Spanish word for drugs. I made it an acronym which stands for ‘Don’t Ruin Us God Said.’”

Lupe is dropping the first video for his album nearly a year after its release, but now that he's independent, he works on his own terms. Earlier this year he released the video for an unreleased song called "Run Game," and he's also been dropping episodes of Beat N Path, a docu-series that sees him traveling to Hong Kong to pursue elevation in his martial arts training.

Continue Reading

H.E.R. Treated Fans To New Song "Anti" At The MTV VMAs

Whether we're judging by vocals or performance or both, it's clear that H.E.R. can do no wrong. Last night at the 2019 MTV Video Awards (Aug. 26), the rapidly rising singer-songwriter and instrumentalist flexed all three of her talents for all the world to see with a performance of a brand new song.

The single, dubbed "Anti," finds H.E.R. in all substance mode, where she uses pointed lyricism to immediately push to societal ills that trigger hatred of others and hatred of self to the forefront. As far as wardrobe, the graphic tees donned by both herself and her dancers and singers took aim at sexism, brutality, racism, and bullying.

The singer, born Gabi Wilson, also delivered another empowering musical performance of "The Lord Is Coming" alongside YBN Cordae at the 2019 BET Awards at the top of the summer.


View this post on Instagram


The energy at the @vmas was crazy! Dream come true! #VMAs

A post shared by H.E.R. (@hermusicofficial) on Aug 27, 2019 at 8:43am PDT

Earlier this year at Coachella, H.E.R. also debuted another new song from her forthcoming untitled LP. The songbird still has yet to offer concrete details on the arrival of this new album but we're already sure it'll be well worth the wait.

Watch that new song below and her VMAs performance up top.

Continue Reading

Top Stories