It is the beginning of the end for this teenage Grammy winner.
She has served her purpose and the powers that be are making a big deal out of nothing, just to give them an excuse to move on to someone else they can control.
The Tide Has Rapidly Turned on Billie Eilish
Backlash, as a very abrupt kind of motion, is governed by the laws of Sir Isaac Newton. Action begets reaction in equal measure. The action on Billie Eilish has been intense this year. She swept all the major categories at the Grammys last week on the strength of her debut When We All Fall Asleep Where Do We Go? and its meteoric single “Bad Guy.” It’s the first time a woman has ever done so. She also secured the next James Bond theme song and a spot to perform at this week’s Academy Awards. A year ago, you had to be up on things to know her name. A month ago, people over 25 or so generally knew a song or two but couldn’t necessarily pick her out of a lineup. Now, there’s voice-of-a-generation energy around her. Her claustrophobic, inescapable sound — a feat in literal bedroom pop, since it was written and produced alongside her older brother, Finneas O’Connell, in the house where the siblings were raised — has been framed as a watershed moment in modern pop music. She’s seen as a disruptor.
But is it true? Does Billie Eilish want that attention? Her party anthem “Xanny” is about sipping canned Coca-Cola while watching people slowly lose their marbles over drugs and drinks. (“Listen Before I Go,” “I Love You,” and “Goodbye,” the triptych of songs that closes out When We All Fall Asleep, form a kind of mini-concept album where she dies at the end.) Her fashion sense is a quirky take on matchy ’90s hip-hop gear (blanched of the context), all lurid prints and slightly unusual dimensions that draw attention away from her figure, like something you might see in a Busta Rhymes or Missy Elliott video. “Billie Eilish dresses like Big Pun,” one Twitter user famously quipped. Like her music, Eilish’s approach to fame is more of a rejection. She still lives in the same house, although her parents, both actors who’ve enjoyed quiet but constant film and television work since the ’80s, now work for her. (Gamers may recognize Eilish’s mom, Maggie Baird, as the voice of Samara from the Mass Effect series.) A rant on consumerism in hip-hop in her first Vogue cover story is both textbook Billie, in its objection to the machinery of celebrity, and a red flag for rap fans, who are tired of pop stars mining the sound and fashion while bristling at the content.
“There’s a difference between lying in a song and writing a story,” Eilish said in the profile. “There are tons of songs where people are just lying. There’s a lot of that in rap right now, from people that I know who rap.” She’s not entirely wrong; a good grip of rap’s bombast is posturing. It’s a grievance that’s existed as long as the music has. Historically, it has come as an insult from people trying to write hip-hop culture off as vulgar, sexist, materialistic, and bloodthirsty. It’s the logic that landed 2 Live Crew in obscenity trials for As Nasty As They Wanna Be 30 years ago. It’s the reason a sitting president publicly objected to Ice-T’s “Cop Killer” in the ’90s. It’s the thing Miley Cyrus said when she retreated to the comfort of squeaky-clean pop music after gentrifying strip-club trap in the whirlwind of press around 2012’s Bangerz. It’s hard not to view Billie Eilish’s remarks through the prism of the long history of white music fans and white musicians turning their noses up at rap music, to invoke the famous Paul Mooney aphorism about people enjoying the trappings of blackness but not the hardship. But we know Eilish doesn’t hate hip-hop. She loves Tierra Whack. She texts Drake. She was so moved by the loss of XXXTentacion that she wrote a song for him. – Source