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Starz In Their Eyes

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I added the second verse soon after and the ‘dog and duck karaoke machine’ section which ended up being another chorus. But… Although I loved what we had done, I began feeling that it sounded too much like a straight ahead disco-y indie pop song. At some point my mate Sam got his little nephew to record the “When I grow up I’m wanna be famous” line, and that was pretty much it. When we get bored and flick on the TV on a Saturday night we are often greeted by a poor soul stood on stage in front of thousands, willed on by family and friends; only for us to soon learn that actually they aren’t that talented after all and are swiftly met with laughs from the crowd and snide jokes and remarks from the judges.

Yes, they get paid up to a point, but there is little concern for the mental pressure that is put on largely unprepared youngsters who are suddenly thrust into the media meat grinder. Starz in their Eyes” attacks talent shows and ‘get famous quick’ schemes which abuse the contestants and then drop them at a moment’s notice when they quickly become irrelevant. Tony then came up with the great drum groove, including the brilliantly simple but effective rising drum fill, and Adam recorded the three chords that are the meat of the song on top. I was also generally angry with the smug and bloated fame machine as a whole, and how the ‘talent’ is often seen as an expendable piece of meat to be used by managers, labels and publicists until their sell-by-date runs out. Although probably not the original intention of the lyrics, I am also reminded of television talent shows at this part of the song.These days you could do it in seconds but back then you had adapt what you had and be inventive with it. I remember it taking Jay a long time to get the track to slow down and speed up to segue in and out this section. In the second bridge, the lyrics delve into the artificial and shallow nature of the entertainment industry. The thing I love about that song though is that there is a tipping point; the moment when you first notice the lyrics.

This means that producers of the show knowingly tell these people that they are good enough at least twice before they make it onto the stage, filling them with hope and self-belief which can then be torn down in front of the nation for our entertainment. In the first verse, the lyrics suggest that once someone becomes famous ("VIPerson"), their problems worsen and their paranoia grows. The chorus questions why someone would want to put "starz in their eyes," implying that seeking fame leads to negative consequences. Although I’d never worked that way before, everything flowed so naturally that day, all the parts complementing each other perfectly. I went from being a low key, left of centre, bedroom producing, rapper/singer/stoner, to being on Top Of The Pops, and Conan O’Brien in NYC, and countless other places I would never have expected.When it came to recording the parts the idea for the big tom drums in the intro came from hearing a snippet of an Adam Ant tune (on my way back from the loo) being played in a neighbouring studio. The song title is taken from British TV talent show Stars in Their Eyes which ran between 1990 and 2006. Whilst they probably wish for some anonymity, we all dream of some recognition; whilst they dream of a simple life, we dream of the fast cars and the big houses. It’s highly publicised that the rich and famous do have their struggles; we often put them up on a pedestal and stare at them with wide and envious eyes wishing for their fortune and fame, but really it’s not the dream we make it out to be.

The song "Starz in their Eyes" by Just Jack criticizes the culture of celebrity and the desire for fame. I’d written half the rap lyrics a while before for something else, and I added some more to make it all fit with the rest of the song. I’m just happy my most well known song has a real and enduring message, and a bit of timelessness in the production. It encourages listeners to question the allure of celebrity culture and highlights the importance of staying true to oneself. With lines such as ‘It’s a long way to come from the Dog and Duck karaoke machine’ and ’It’s a long way to come from your private bedroom dance routines’ being sung in a cheeky cockney accent, the song relates back to us; I think this does much more to help us understand.I’d been listening to The Clash a lot at the time and decided I wanted a rawer more ‘band’ orientated sound for this song. I think we have all seen in the past when a star emerges set to be the next best thing, only to disappear after a short while into thin air.

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