In the music spotlight: Pink

Culture | Pink's popularity reflects good marketing more than a good role model

Issue: "State of the Union 2003," Jan. 25, 2003

The temptation is strong to cite the confessional lyrics of Alecia Moore-a.k.a. Pink-as proof of the devastation wrought by the breakdown of the family. In song after song, the persona that emerges from M!ssundaztood (Arista), Miss Moore's quadruple-platinum second album, is licking either its wounds (inflicted by warring parents and predatory males) or its lips (at the thought of teaching those parents and males a lesson).

What those inclined to turn her into a poster child should remember is that Miss Moore, now 23, has been a would-be show-business professional since her mid-teens, trying on guises, situations, and styles in search of a combination that would make her a star. Her ruminations therefore have been honed with a demographic (and a rather stereotypical one at that: the teenage damsel in distress) in mind. And although her sales suggest a broad-based empathy, they could just as easily suggest nothing more than the perennial appeal of catchy vulnerability.

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