Stop The Presses!

May 10-16: Katy Perry’s ‘California Gurls’ Pays Homage To Big Star

Stop The Presses!


Katy Perry did not know that her new song "California Gurls"would end up paying homage to '70s pop band Big Star. But something tragichappened after she wrote the song. In March, Alex Chilton, the group's leadsinger, suffered a fatal heart attack.

Perry's manager, a huge fan of Big Star, asked the "Hot N Cold" singer to change the spelling of her song (previously named "CaliforniaGirls") to mirror the Big Star title "September Gurls."

Perry explained the special request to EntertainmentWeekly. "My manager, Bradford, he's from Mississippi, and he's a huge Big Star fan,"she said. "And with the death of one of their members, I had just written thatsong, and he's like, 'Katy, just for me, will you please title it 'CaliforniaGurls,' with a 'u'? People won't even know!' I don't know the whole catalog ofBig Star, but I did it because Bradford is oneof my best friends, and I thought it was cool, and you know, the kids likethose variations."

Aside from using the same spelling for "Gurls," Perry's"California Gurls" is nothing like Big Star's 1974 hit.

Perry's "California Gurls" has an element of hip-hop,featuring a rap from Snoop Dogg, and is an upbeat, summertime dance track withfunk undertones. Her lyrics boast of the amenities of the golden coast,including beautiful girls donning Daisy Dukes and bikini tops.

MUSIC: Hear Katy Perry's "California Gurls"

Big Star's "September Gurls" is essentially the opposite.The '70s twangy-guitar power-pop ballad is actually depressing. Chilton'ssoft lead vocals bemoan heartbreak: "I loved you well never mind, I've beencrying all the time."

MUSIC: Listen to Big Star's "September Gurls"

Actually, considering Perry has been known to break hearts onsongs "Ur So Gay" and "Hot N Cold," it might be fair to consider her a"September Gurl."

Perry's sophomore album, TeenageDream, is due out on August 24 on Capitol Records.

In other news, the funeralfor the legendary Lena Horne was held Friday in New York. The singer and actor who was 92died Sunday. In the 1940s she broke the color barrier, becoming one of thefirst black artists to play the Copacabana. Bret Michaels fans received goodnews, however, as it was announced that he planned to return to the stage bymonth's end and would be appearing on TheOprah Winfrey Show on May 19.

THIS WEEK'S TOP 5NEWS STORIES

1) StormyWeather - Icon Lena Horne dies at 92.

2) PutA Ring On It - Country superstars Blake Shelton and Miranda Lambertannounce engagement.

3) BieberFever Cure-All - 12-year-old boy's Lady Gaga cover goes viral.

4) EliminationNight - Elton John does not want to replace Simon Cowell.

5) RoadTo Recovery - Bret Michaels headed to the stage, and Oprah.

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