by Maxim Daniels
I was surprised this particular band member did happen to be the first to leave. As an adult myself, whenever I hear the name One Direction, the name that first pops in my head is Harry Styles. In my opinion, he is the face of the band, just like JT was of N'SYNC. If one person was going to branch off on their own, most would have thought it would be Harry. This is what makes this particular move by Zayn so brilliant. No matter what he says, he and I both know the real reason behind him being the first to leave the group.
I'm sure you are asking yourself, How does little old Maxim Daniels know why Zayn left One Direction? My answer to you is simple, math. Now you are asking yourself, what does math have to do with Zayne leaving? Trust me, I will explain, and it will take three parts to do so.
The first thing we need to do is understand a little about who Zayn Malik is. As an outsider looking in, I will tell you he is the fourth most popular member of the group. Call me crazy, but this is simply my opinion. Zayn is a twenty-two year old born in Bradford UK. Zayn has been a founding member of One Direction. since it's beginnings back in 2010.
Off the top of my head, the most famous of the boy bands were The Beatles. I'm just kidding! We can't technically call them a boy band because they all played instruments, correct? Some of the more famous boy bands were N'SYNC, Backstreet Boys, NKOTB, 98 Degrees, O-Town, Color Me Badd, Take That and New Edition. I realize there are several more, just work with me here.
Now I will give you how long each of these boy bands lasted. I'm talking about their peak years, and not when they reunited after breaking apart. I will not be including reunions, because we all know how well that goes over. No one wants to see a bunch of overweight, balding, forty somethings acting like they did when they were a founding member of their particular boy band. Here we go:
N'SYNC - (Seven Years) Of all the boy bands, N'SYNC is the only one who has a clear beginning and end. One of the most popular boy bands in the history of music, they lasted from 1995 to 2002. Thank you N'SYNC for keeping things simple.
NKOTB - (Eleven Years) I'm being extremely generous by giving these guys eleven years. The time frame went from 1984 until 1995, but anyone with a pulse realizes they faded sometime around the early nineties. Nine years would be more of an accurate number. As a child of the eighties, I absolutely hated these guys. They were my first introduction to the boy band, and left a horrible taste. Sorry NKOTB fans.
98 Degrees - (Six Years) This was one boy band I could get on board with. 98 Degrees actually produced some good music, and for some reason, never reminded me of a boy band. They just seemed more masculine than the other boy band. The guys have since reunited, but again, unless you are a die hard fan you might have difficulty knowing how they're doing.
Color Me Badd - (Six Years) Another boy band from the eighties, and another one I couldn't stand. I'm sure there are those who will argue their time was much longer than the six years I gave them. Their peak went from 1987 to 1993, and then after a four year hiatus, they emerged with another album in 1996. I'm still only giving them six years.
Take That - (Six Years) You will be forgiven if you have never heard of Take That. Except for one video that VH1 played over and over, I would be unable to tell you who they were. However, their time lasted from 1990 to 1996. These guys are still together and might be big in some circles, but for me, their peak ended almost ten years ago.
New Edition - (Seven Years) It gets really dicey when coming up with a clear time frame for these guys. Somehow, I managed to break their peak from the years 1983 to 1990. It's hard to say how long they were together, but I'm pretty confident to say seven years were their max.
This is when the simple math comes in. Since One Direction has been together for about five years now, one could assume they have only a couple years of popularity left. What does this mean to Zayn? What it means, is Zayn has given himself a two year head start to re-establish himself as a non-boy band member.
Zayn has a very difficult task ahead of himself, and in Part II of The Zayn Malik Departure, I will dig a little deeper into what I mean by re-establishing himself as a non-boy band member. For now, let me leave you with this one question to think about.
Outside of Justin Timberlake, give me one former boy band member who has established himself as a legitimate star? By legitimate, I mean Justin Timberlake legitimate, or at least mainstream legitimate.
I try to hold out, but no matter how long I try, I always end up caving in. Don't get me wrong, their music tastes aren't bad, it's just not something I can listen to all the time.
So much of today's mainstream music sounds the same. It's easy to identify an artist on the radio because every song they release ends up on the station's playlist, good or bad. Unfortunately, there is more bad than good. I've been fortunate enough, except for car rides, to avoid listening to mainstream music due to this site providing me with a plethora of independent artists. I would be lying if I said I didn't use this site for my own personal playlist.
I should give my kids some credit though, their favorite songs to listen to at this time would make a solid top five, with the exception being number five. With their tablets and IPhones, these five songs have been consistently played over the past month or so. I imagine my kids are not the only ones listening to these songs, so no doubt they should be the top five songs out there today in mainstream music. Again, the exception being number five, and by mainstream, I mean the predominantly dominated pop channels.
#4 - "Blank Space" by Taylor Swift - I admit, I'm a fan of this song. I think just about everyone with a pulse is a fan of this song. I would be curious if this song has the most covers done on it in the past year. Everyone has put their own spin on it, even a couple of indie artists featured on this site. One thing keeps ringing true, it's truly a great song that can be played in multiple genres. The official video has been played over seven-hundred million times on YouTube. Say what you want about Taylor's personal life, the girl produces damn good music.
#3 - "Dear Future Husband" - by Meghan Trainor - Another admission, I really like the whole beat with this song. I don't dance at all, but once they play this song, I can't help but bust out some 1950's style dance. God help me if one of the kids records it and puts it on YouTube. The only thing I ask of Meghan is to switch it up a bit from time to time. Everything sounds the same.
#1 - "Heartbeat Song" - Kelly Clarkson - Hands down, this song has been played more than any other song in my house in the past week. Thanks to her appearance on American Idol last week, this song has shot up to the top of my household chart, and doesn't seem to be losing any steam. For anyone who reads my blogs, you understand I'm an Idol fan as well as a fan of Clarkson's. I'm just happy my kids enjoy her as much as I do or else I would be ready to pull my gray hairs out.
The biggest obstacle is coming up with a topic people want to read about. Just because I find something interesting doesn't mean someone else will. I then started to question myself a bit. I thought, I'm not going to be able to write about something I don't enjoy just to please the masses. Then a friend told me something that made my decision making a lot easier.
He said, "It's your site, just write about whatever you want, if people want to read it, fine, if not, oh well. Maybe they will want to read the next one or the one after that. Maybe they won't want to read anything at all, but the main thing is that you enjoy what you're writing."
I thought about this for a bit and said to myself, you know, he's right on the money. I mean, I'm not expecting to get rich off this site, nor am I expecting everyone to love it. The main thing I need to do is to make sure I love it.
In essence, my writing about something I love goes hand in hand with the reason for this site in the first place, the independent musician. Yes, I'm sure just about everyone who has been featured on this site would love to be signed to a major record label. Just like I would love to have this site be The Rolling Stone of independent musicians. In the meantime, we all strive to put something out there that people will enjoy, that we enjoy ourselves.
I love this site because it gives me the opportunity to interact with musicians all over the world. We may not share the same language, but we all have one common goal, and that's to put out a product we love and hope that others will love it too. I'm inspired by some of these indie bands that have been together forever and never received that big break. I'm inspired because they keep chugging along and making music they love for people like me to enjoy.
Doing this site has opened me up to genres of music I never thought I would love. I recently did an interview with a trio from Italy called the Psychords. Their genre of music is punk, and for almost all of my life, I avoided it like the plague. Then I see these three hot ladies and decide to give them a listen, and it opened up a whole new world. Same thing with SPELLCASTER. I hadn't listened to heavy metal since I was a little boy in the third grade. Once I listened to them, I was hooked again.
Then you have the lighter side, like Sydney Blake and the Misters, Valerie Broussard, Mariah Domby, and most recently Alexandra Kay. Every single one of these ladies sounds different, but I enjoy each and every one.
Same with every other singer or band on this site. If I didn't like them, they wouldn't be on here. Bryce Vanhoosen from SPELLCASTER said something during the interview I will never forget. He said, "I really don't know where the need to classify everything as its own sub-genre comes from. I guess it makes it easier for the hard rock/heavy metal record nerds of the world to organize their LPs."
He's right, music is music regardless of the genre. Don't get too caught up and labeling yourself a fan of one particular genre and neglect the many others out there you might just come to love.
It seems so simple for a musician. Just put something out there you love and maybe people will love it too. I think I need to live by that same motto. Write something I love and maybe people will love it too. And that is exactly what I am going to do.
You see, every artist on here and myself have one common goal, and that's to love what we do. I am going to take inspiration from all these fine indie artists and write what I love until my fingers bleed. Guess what, writing this here blog page was the easiest thing to write about in months. Want to know why, because I enjoyed it.