Take one step in the minds of some of the most crafty managers and publicists, and you wouldn’t believe the media action plans for celebrity relevancy. In the midst of a changing recording industry, the decline of album sales, and the dependency on brand endorsements, and tours, music stars are willing to do whatever it takes to become a hot topic.
This is precisely what several media insiders believe 29-year-old record producer, and singer The-Dream is doing. The artist released his third studio album “Love King” on June 29, the album debuted in a meager third position on the R&B/Hip-Hop charts despite high anticipation, heavy promotional tactics and lavish music videos. While some artists make traditional promotional efforts to drive their albums up the charts–like in-store album signings and television appearances, The-Dream was conveniently photographed Monday on a beach with his assistant. Not long after, his wife singer and actress Christina Milian tweets: “Whatever you think, believe it.” This all succeeds a quickie statement The-Dream’s rep released to US Magazine confirming the couple officially split.
Now today, the singer-songwriter releases yet another statement via his website, an ‘open letter’ titled “In My Own Words” revealing details behind his split with Milian. The-Dream writes:
“I take FULL RESPONSIBILITY for misleading everyone into thinking everything was fine and okay when we knew problems existed for awhile! I wanted to speak up but we decided it wasn’t for anyone to know. I would NEVER intentionally hurt a soul and everyone around me knows that!” he continued. “There was so much going on in me and Christina’s personal world that I tried to deal with it as delicately as I could and tried to regain my footing. Instead of being direct in order not to cause even more hurt or hurt someone’s feelings, I carried the weight in secret!”
You’d think a Grammy Award-winning producer would be beyond the age old private lives meets public chatter sales strategy. But although some stars’ extreme and desperate behavior– Lindsay Lohan included is a fight to remain bankable in an evolving Hollywood–and while some of us may think of The-Dream’s public antics–and Milian’s likely corporation– as a ghetto stage play gone viral, stars use of their personal lives to promote various projects is nothing new.
Hollywood romance is big business. Story book weddings and divorce scandals have been yielding dollars for quite some time. In 1963, actors Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton were retro replicas of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. Their open romance generated global mania, and profitable print tabloid frenzy. This was largely the reason why the couple’s film Cleopatra was the highest grossing film of that year. Remember Usher’s “Confessions” album? That stunt generated $1.1 million in its first week. Basically, we all shouldn’t be surprised if Christina Milian drops a new video a la Justin Timberlake’s ‘Cry Me A River’ tomorrow.
This a dog’s old and tired tricks for bones. Memo to all entertainers: get more inventive and quick. The public is smarter than you think.
Do you think The-Dream and Christina Milian’s public fall out is a publicity stunt? Sound off!