Back in 2013, Pharrell Williams released the song “Blurred Lines” with Robin Thicke. The song was a huge success with the track peaking at number one in at least 25 countries. However, the lyrics have been deemed problematic and “predatory-sounding” with many people disgracing the song since its release. Williams recently sat down with GQ Magazine for an interview and talks about how he now realizes why people had an issue with the song.
He says that at first, he didn’t understand the controversy surrounding the song.
“I didn’t get it at first. Because there were older white women who, when that song came on, they would behave in some of the most surprising ways ever,” Williams told GQ. “So when there started to be an issue with it, lyrically, I was, like, What are you talking about?”
He says that the country’s chauvinist culture opened his eyes as to why people would be offended by the song.
“I realized that we live in a chauvinist culture in our country. Hadn’t realized that. Didn’t realize that some of my songs catered to that. So that blew my mind,” said Williams.
He added that his personal views on the song didn’t matter.
“And then I realized that there are men who use that same language when taking advantage of a woman, and it doesn’t matter that that’s not my behavior. Or the way I think about things. It just matters how it affects women,” said Williams. “And I was like, Got it. I get it. Cool. My mind opened up to what was actually being said in the song and how it could make someone feel.”
The singer adds that he is “embarrassed” by some of the songs he has released in the past, including “Blurred Lines.”
“Some of my old songs, I would never write or sing today,” he told GQ. “I get embarrassed by some of that stuff. It just took a lot of time and growth to get to that place.”
This isn’t the only controversy surrounding the song. Williams and Thicke were sued by Marvin Gaye’s estate because the drumming was inspired by one of Gaye’s songs. They were found liable for copyright infringement by a federal jury in 2015, and Gaye was awarded posthumous songwriting credit. Based on all these controversies, we think it’s time to leave this annoying song in 2013 where it belongs.