Turbo Folk in America – Part II

Earlier this fall we speculated that Avicii’s “Wake Me Up” in fact signified the introduction of the turbo folk production aesthetic to American audiences.

Consider this post a tentative doubling down on that thesis.* The always-appealing Ke$ha and the execrable Pitbull have collaborated to produce “Timber“, and the results are pure American turbo folk. Ke$ha sings a catchy hook over a sort of faux-bluegrass harmonica melody which percolates through the entire track, while Pitbull (and I’m quoting a friend here), “just says a bunch of common rap phrases and then “Get Money” like 40 times.”**

If this becomes a proper trend, you saw it here first. With country becoming more friendly to cross-genre aesthetics and collaboration (witness the success of Florida Georgia Line), and pop music slowly losing interest in the pure Eurodance which dominated from roughly 2008 to 2013, it’s not difficult to imagine the former popping up with increasing frequency in the latter.***

*Yes, we’re operating on a bit of a delay here, as the song inspiring this post came out in October
**I’ve already called him execrable in this post, so I don’t mean to rub it in too much, but Pitbull really is terrible
***You could argue that this summer represents the end of the Eurodance pop era in the United States, as the biggest hits (“Get Lucky” and “Blurred Lines” for example) came from a distinctly funkier, 70s-ier, less four-on-the-floor-ier place