The Retro Politics Of Meghan Trainor Music

by Elizabeth Kiefer

To be blunt, we aren’t big fans of Meghan Trainor around these parts: Her over-produced bubblegum pop tunes are catchy at best, and there are way better artists to listen to within that genre. But we’ll admit we were initially happy when “All About That Bass” hit the sound waves: It seemed body positive and hopeful—and that’s the kind of message we can get behind.

That was before taking a closer look at the lyrics though. Sing it out about sassy curves girl, but why bring a dose of skinny shaming into it? That song left a sour taste in our mouths. The “Dear Future Husband” video sealed the deal, though. In it, Trainor appears in her signature vintage-kitsch attire (under other circumstances, a look we love) and attempts to put a progressive spin on what boils down to hubby hunting. She insists her man has to work to deserve her (okay, we’re listening) but the path to proving his worth is paved with pizza deliveries, diamond rings, and treating her like a lady even when she’s acting crazy (we have now stopped listening).

She also earned our ire when she co-penned the lyrics “after every fight/just apologize/ and maybe then I’ll let you try and rock my body right/even if I was wrong/ you know I’m never wrong/ why disagree?” Don’t you know, Meghan Trainor, that pandering does not an equal partnership make?

This is just sexist ideology dressed up in gingham and a pencil skirt, and it sends the wrong message to women—and men—everywhere. It would have been ironic if “Dear Future Husband” paired a cheeky vintage aesthetic with a progressive stance on what it takes to be in a relationship. But Trainor’s song only manages to match a ‘50s music video set with an equally retro cultural attitude. Women can work and clean the kitchen floor and bake an apple pie these days, without being any less of a modern woman, even if Trainor is insinuating otherwise. At the end of the day, this song is just another anthem of regressive gender norms, and we would just as soon listen to something else.

Actually, this pretty much sums up how we feel about everything about her.

Photos via popjustice, popsugar

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