The Hit Songs Deconstructed Wire

Summertime Sadness



As an artist, having 1 version of your song land in the top 10 throughout the world is a cause for celebration.

However, doing it twice with 2 versions of the same song is a MAJOR ACHIEVEMENT.

This is exactly what Lana Del Rey achieved with both the original and the Cedric Gervais Dance remix versions of Summertime Sadness.

The compositional strengths of both enabled Del Rey to cross pollinate into multiple genres and demographics, ultimately taking her stature as a force within today’s mainstream music scene to the next level.

What follows is as an excerpt from the report that focuses on the “price of admission” that creative artists need to, or should at least consider paying in order to help take their career to the next level.

These days, it’s more important than ever to maximize the exposure of your song by any means necessary.  This includes intensive marketing and PR initiatives, social media interaction, an over-the-top video, and much to the chagrin of many an artist, THE REMIX.

Why do most artists have a problem with the very mention of a remix?  Because they think that it “destroys” the original vision of how they intended the song to be heard and compromises their “artistic integrity” to a degree.   And you know what?  They’re right!

Take Summertime Sadness, for example.  The ORIGINAL version of the song is intense, dramatic, evocative and connects with the listener on a deep level.
Now, remove the song defining drum pattern and swap in a “typical” Dance/Club beat, sub the lush orchestration out for “typical” EDM synths, get rid of the bridge and swap in “typical” EDM natured instrumental breaks, and speed it up a notch so that it loses its original dramatic flair and you get the Cedric Gervais remix.
When you compare the 2, the remix loses most of the core characteristics that made the song so special in the first place.


Remember, it was the REMIX that technically outperformed the original version on charts throughout the world, and it was BECAUSE of the REMIX that Del Rey’s status as a key player in mainstream was taken to the next level via the additional exposure that would have been a lot more difficult to achieve without.
As an artist, I know that it’s EXCEPTIONALLY DIFFICULT to let go of something that you created with your own unique vision only to be “re-purposed” and “repackaged” to resonate with the masses and maximize sales.

But if you’re looking to compete and make a name for yourself within the mainstream, you’re going to need to bite the bullet and pull all the stops to make it happen.  And yes, this sometimes includes going against the grain of your own unique artistic vision.
However, if you put a positive spin on it and look at it in the sense of “paying the price of admission” to achieve the widespread success that you so desire, it’s going to be a much easier pill to swallow.

Once the success starts to happen, you’ll be in a much better position to dictate what can and can’t be done with your music.  But you need to get to that level first, and the REMIX on one of the most effective ways to help make it happen.

Bottom line – always stay true to your artistry, but remember, it’s called the “music INDUSTRY” for a reason!