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Renaissance Man Pharrell Williams Shares His Brand of Happy

Renaissance Man Pharrell Williams Shares His Brand of Happy with W W Magazine


Williams’s mantra of equality is genuine, but it may be a reaction to the furor over the lyrics to “Blurred Lines,” which many critics felt objectify women. Lines like “You’re an animal” and the overtly sexual video caused an uproar, especially when Miley Cyrus twerked her way to infamy during a raunchy rendition of the song at the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards. Again, “Blurred Lines” had been slow to take off—it sat on the shelf for eight months until the video caused a frenzy. “ ‘Blurred Lines’ made women, especially, want to dance,” Williams told me. “I realized that a lot of women didn’t know how to fit in to the rhythm of rap songs—they needed music to bend and curve a little bit. I was producing Robin Thicke, and he is a soulful white boy and I thought we could take some chances. That song was what happened.”

Learning from his “Blurred Lines” experience, Williams is more mindful of his key constituency: women. His new solo album, G I R L, with its intentional letter spacing to underscore that idea of equality, is dedicated to the spirit of females everywhere. “I fully realize the power of women,” Williams said as he prepared to go onstage. “If women wanted to put up their hands and say, ‘No more children,’ they could stop the world. We have to acknowledge their power: There is no person on the planet who didn’t benefit from a woman saying yes twice—yes to make you and yes to have you. And every human being came through the golden doors of a woman’s body. I’m not against the male species, but let’s make things equal. Other than the hat, I’m getting to be known for putting my hands together in a prayer of thanks. My mood these days is grateful. I am so, so grateful.”

Stashed in: Women, #happiness, Music, Late Bloomers, @mileycyrus, @robinthicke, @pharrell

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I did not realize that G I R L is spaced out because equality.

I do think it's amazing he could go from "Blurred Lines" to "Happy" in under a year.

Sounds like he has newfound respect for women.

I like his attitude of gratitude, too.

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