Should we feel bad for liking Chris Brown's music and hating Chris Brown the person?

In the pantheon of greatness, there are many assholes. John Lennon. Ludwig von Beethoven. Eddie Van Halen. All of these people make/made undeniably great music; all of these people are/were demonstrably pompous, entitled, demanding asshats who would be unbearable to know.

  Like anyone else, I like to believe that the music I like is made by nice folks, but mostly that's just not the case. The litany of great musicians/shitty people is lengthy, and I decided a long time ago to make it my policy to just ignore it. And I'm pleased to report that it works: Beethoven might have thrown shit at audience members who whispered, and even the son John Lennon liked might think he was a dick, but that doesn't limit my enjoyment of Double Fantasy or Beethoven's Seventh in the slightest.

  Nevertheless, I am conflicted.

  In all of pop music today, there is not a single artist more loathsome than Chris Brown. He beat the shit out of his girlfriend, of course, but what was far more disgusting was his PR strategy in the aftermath: The fake tears, the petulant temper tantrums — he was sorry as long as you didn't try to make him feel sorry. More recently, there was his little performance at the MTV Video Music Awards — and I'm not really talking about his "Yeah 3x"/Wu-Tang/Nirvana/"Beautiful People" montage.

During that number, Brown's $22,000 Rolex apparently came loose, causing him to toss it casually aside while dancing — evidently too far, because it got lost in the audience. Now listen closely, because here comes the part where Chris Brown is an unbelievable shitbag: Miraculously, a fan was kind enough to return it, and "although Chris did not get to meet the fan," his rep told TMZ, "he is very appreciative of the fan's actions." Wait, so this person returned his $22,000 watch and he didn't even deign to meet that person? What a mind-bogglingly dick move.

And yet...and yet I can't ignore that that same performance was awesome. In fact, the more I encounter Chris Brown, the more I'm assaulted with the conflicting facts of both his dickitude and his talent.

Take, for example, "Look at me Now." Within the first five seconds of that song — when he asks how you're going to hate from outside the club when you can't even get in and then laughs that annoying little shit laugh that makes you want to punch him in his stupid fucking round face — I hate him. And furthermore, I know that song is directed at me, the hater critic crying in the wilderness — verily, from outside the club — about how much he sucks while he continues to not care and rake in cash, probably with an actual rake. But here's the most awful part: I like that song. I have rolled down the windows and blasted it. And I am ashamed.

One day, it won't matter. Chris Brown will be remembered as a talented performer who could sing, dance and flow, all with irresistible panache, and the fact that he was a domestically abusive piece of shit will be only a footnote. But for the first time in a long time, I feel kind of bad about that.

 
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14 comments
SpeterMan3
SpeterMan3

He invited the fan to his next concert and shouted her out on Twitter, fyi. He showed his appreciation. And this article is so blindly written, but I expect nothing better, really.

Realist
Realist

Actually Chris brown is meeting the girl who found the rolex, giving her tickets and backstage passes to his concert. He even mentioned her on twitter so ppl will know who she is. Why keep bringing up the incident with Rihanna, are u going to mention it in every Chris brown article u write, will u mention it in 5 years, 10 years, it's OLD news. Report about what he's doing, not about what he did, artist don't receive awards for songs made 2 years ago do they? Stop bringing up incidents from the past

Impossible expectations
Impossible expectations

Somehow, i feared this article is a trap for people avoiding nonsense.

What do you what from this kid=> i mean really?!

all this super human expectations all of a sudden from Chris cos of 1 silly ex-girlfriend

Its a busy day, so much work so much politics, how would he be able to think straight

like 120 choreograph & moves & the tension of his comeback performance

even an ordinary person wouldn't be expected to think that far so quick.

I'm sure he wasn't crying over that Rolex watch! he drives a Lamborghini! He only went back for his jewel which everyone would regardless of how much you have.

J K Jones
J K Jones

I don't give a shit about that convicted woman beater.

Stephanie
Stephanie

What kind of spineless person wrote this article? I assume it's an amateur because 1. You didnt validate your information. TMZ and even PEREZ HILTON has reported that Chris Brown will be rewarding the fan and meeting her personally. 2. You sound mad as hell. Did he punch you? The girl that was in the altercation with him has forgiven him. Also, from what we know, that was the one and only encounter of abuse. 3. I'm sure Chris Brown is not trying to write a book on being perfect or win the Best Man Alive award. He has made mistakes like us all and he's an ARTIST as well as human. Whether you can separate the two or not, many have and that's why he is successful today. Not to mention the young man is quite talented. I happened to catch his performance on the VMAs and he did such a FANTASTIC job. The kids were excited and that's what music and entertainment is ultimately about. We were entertained. So 4. Get a life. Move on from Chris Brown because he is clearly trying to move on with his own life. No matter how much you try to bring him down, you end up rehashing it to Rihanna, and that is disrespectful as hell. Both parties have moved so you should too. oh and 5. Learn how to write...

Ijhall07
Ijhall07

I am so baffled at all of these unknown people coming out of the woodwork to jump on the Chris Brown "bandwagon" in order to make a name for themselves because of their vulgar comments towards him. So, do you feel like more of a person now that you've stooped so low as to call him all these profane words? Cause seriously, it's not a good professional look for a grown person in your position. I would say that your actions or no better than Chris actions when he let others comments affect him. Whatever happened to a person paying for their crimes thru a court of law and being able to move on with their lives after satisfying the terms of their punishment? I thought we lived in America! Journalist like you( or bloggers) keep the past mistakes of Chris Brown relevant because he's hot and newsworthy!!! I would say "Look at him now" ! You people(naysayers) need him more than he needs you!

Johnnyboy360
Johnnyboy360

Oh come on. He is meeting with the fan. His rep flipping said so. Do you read the frickin' news. I have said it millions of times, Chris hates himself for what he did, and those weren't fake tears. He is honestly sorry and really upset. Rihanna must forgive him otherwise she wouldn't have wanted to loosen the probation. It may have been for buisness purposes but she loosened it. Seriously man, lighten up. You are one of the few people who still hate him.

Noneyobusiness
Noneyobusiness

your kinda being a little harsh. when i comes to music and dancing, chris is an amazing performer and i personally think he is one of the best out there. but you dont know what actually happened when she returned the watch. maybe chris left the building before the girl returned the watch. as for the beating of his girlfriend. your adding insult to her injury by saying he beat the 'shit' of out her. i am by no means saying what he did wasn't bad and hurtful. but the picture of her on the internet could be well after the beating....meaning she swelled up ALOT like what happens to many people when they get hurt. there is a reason why he was so popular before his incident, he was charming, fun, and presented himself as a good person. he made a mistake, and its articles like this that keep drilling his mistakes back in his head that cause him to vent every now and then. Bottom line- dont ever be ashamed of loving his music, be ashamed of being part of the group that keeps reminding him of what he did. believe me, im sure by now he knows. check-mate

osman
osman

You sound ignorant as fuck..you never met Chris Brown & he is not here to please you loser ..cut his name of your mouth & look yourself into a mirror

tim davids
tim davids

I hope the Rolex-finding girl doesn't make him mad enough to hit her.

Sweet2jam
Sweet2jam

It basically show that yu care , cause why would yu waste yur time and comment on this article... Yet because wat yu said really doesn't make any sense... Yu need to think before yu act out wats infront if yu!!!! Dumbasssssss!

Lauren
Lauren

But evidently you do, because you saw a post with HIS name and jumped to comment. Yeah...I guess you do!

 
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