ARTISTS: Mariah Carey, Beyoncé, Mary J. Blige, Rihanna, Fergie, Sheryl Crow, Miley Cyrus, Melissa Etheridge, Ashanti, Natasha Bedingfield, Keyshia Cole, Ciara, Leona Lewis, LeAnn Rimes, and Carrie Underwood
TITLE: “Just Stand Up”
WEB DEBUT: Aug. 22, 2008
ONE-LISTEN VERDICT: I know it’s probably uncharitable to say not-very-nice things about efforts put forth for a good cause, and Lord knows the “female singers are all so processed” argument is more than a little bit old. But this LA Reid and Babyface-produced benefit single (proceeds will go to the cancer-research nonprofit Stand Up For Cancer) is less notable for sounding exactly like what you’d think an LA Reid and Babyface-produced benefit single made in 2008 and more notable for processing the voices of all the boldfaced names singing on the track into a smooth oleo. Only Rihanna, Fergie, and Melissa Etheridge broke through the Velveeta barrier; shoot, I needed a second listen to figure out that Beyonce was probably singing the opening couplet, and she’s not exactly the type who’s wont to “blend.” Perhaps the production is actually a statement on how everyone should give up their egos for the fight against what is obviously an awful disease, but for some reason I suspect that we’re going to see quite the melisma contest during the performance of the track on the charity’s attendant telethon, which airs Sept. 5.
WHERE TO FIND IT: Clear Channel’s Boston top-40 station has the track streaming, although a warning to any of you who may click while at work: It’s on autoplay, so find some headphones first.