Shock waves were sent across the world yesterday as TMZ released secretly recorded footage of ‘Happy’ singer/rapper Pharrell Williams buying a rather large bottle of anti-depressants at a drug store in Los Angeles.
After being confronted by the TMZ reporter on the spot, a nervous Pharrell Williams broke down and proceeded to pour his heart out. A partial transcript of the video –
Pharrell Williams – “…..so yeah, I’ve always been sad, bro. You know why? Coz I used to be poor. Did ya’ll know that? I was homeless. Am guessing none of you ever lived in a room without a roof. Heard of this thing called rain? Happy-like-a-room-without-a-roof my ass. You always need the roof, yo. I was just messing with ya’ll.
[At this point, Mr. Pharrell Williams stops to pop of a couple of Prozacs and then continues]
Did you know there are over 800 versions of the song? You know what’s worse? I must have seen at least 700 of them. Can you imagine that? And now, I have to work with the dopes at the UN because the damn song made me famous? Can you blame me for being depressed, bro?”
As the clip went viral on YouTube, fans of the singer were left sobbing inconsolably and wondering if they had ever really been happy or merely fallen victims to the power of suggestion and/or a self-fulfilling prophecy. ‘I did hear the word happy about 237 times in a 4 minute song’, said a teenager in his own defense, rather reasonably.
An op-ed in the New York Times today by Thomas Friedman delves deeper into the mind of the troubled singer and our collective complicity in pushing him to the edge. An excerpt –
It is now beyond dispute that Pharrell Williams was attempting to subtly satirize society’s seemingly simplistic conceptions of happiness and well-being. And what happened? We all took it literally. Its evident that the song has been spectacularly misinterpreted in tone, especially by the millennial generation, who have unwittingly appropriated his biting social commentary on modern man’s psychological naiveté for reprehensible ends like sharing it on Facebook to get more ‘likes’. The song does start with the line – ‘I’m about to say something crazy’. On hindsight, that should have tipped us off.
Donald Trump had the final word with this tweet – ‘Who else is lying to us? Maybe someone should go check if Adele has found someone else just like her ex-boyfriend or not. It’s been over 3 years. We need answers NOW’.