Singer-songwriter Katy Perry has enjoyed several top 20 hit
singles from her debut album on Capitol Records, One Of The Boys.
Her success led to a performance for MTV's Unplugged on July
22, 2009, which has been compiled into the recently released CD/DVD
set. Her show included a handful of her pop standards like "I
Kissed A Girl," "Ur So Gay," and "Waking Up In
Vegas" along with a cover of Fountains Of Wayne's tune
"Hackensack" and a brand new song by Perry called "Brick
By Brick." Rather than being a retrospective, Perry's MTV
Unplugged session shows these songs in a new light, and displays
them as permanent pieces in pop culture's collection.
The CD portion of the set is performed acoustically as opposed to
their amplified versions on her album One Of The Boys. The
treatments applied to the songs bring out their "nuances,"
described by Perry in the interview on the DVD. "I Kissed A Girl"
emphasizes the heavy bass lines, "Ur So Gay" is tasseled
in strands billowy jazzy horns, and "Thinking Of You" is
decorated in swirls of orchestral strings. The flakes of country twang
in the acoustics for "Lost" draw out an Americana texture,
and the sparsely chained chords of "Brick By Brick" give
the melody a torchlight ambience.
The DVD in the set includes Perry's live performance in addition
to a private interview with her on the MTV stage. Perry talks about
how she started out as a singer and songwriter, what inspired her
to write the songs on her album, and what the journey has been like
for her since One Of The Boys was released. She compares her
song "I Kissed A Girl" to Madonna's track "Like A Virgin"
as both seem to resonate with audiences in the same manner. Perry's
song "Hot 'N' Cold" from One Of The Boys is probably
better known, but an acoustic version of the tune is not included
in the set.
Perry's success with One Of The Boys has garnered her several
awards including a Brit Award, a MTV Europe Music Award, a Grammy
Award, a MTV Music Video Award, and a Teen Choice Award. Perry's CD/DVD
set for her MTV Unplugged session caps the success she has
experienced with One Of The Boys in a lasting visual. Whether
more is in store for Perry is purely speculation, but wherever she
goes from here, she has managed to make "I Kissed A Girl"
reach Carole King's classic pop status, so now even our grand-children
will recognize the tune from way back when.
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