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Why Britney’s “Hold Me Closer” Comeback is So Powerful.

Why Britney’s “Hold Me Closer” Comeback is So Powerful.

Britney Spears sang about the public's love for a legendary lady in her song "Mona Lisa" in 2005. She admonished, "They want her to crumble and become a tale of a collapse.

Although the song was never made into a single, Spears fans have long hypothesized and became fixated on its prophetic message, which saw Britney criticizing pop culture's penchant for flaws.

The pop star's problems kept tabloids and gossip websites busy throughout the aughts while her own career and personal life appeared to disintegrate in front of the public. In spite of the songs, tours, and residencies that kept arriving, she was confined to a conservatorship in 2008 and spent the rest of her 20s behind a wall of family spokespersons and preapproved interviews.

She has staged an extraordinary public confrontation with the pain and claimed abuse she underwent, from the cancellation of holidays to the intrusions on her body and the control over her music. She has done this through court appearances and social media.

In a post on Instagram made around the end of last year, she stated, "I think it appears weird to most now why I don't even do my music anymore." People don't realize the terrible things that were done to me personally, and as a result of what I've gone through, I'm terrified of both people and business.

Her admirers were overjoyed when she disclosed earlier this month that she had recorded a duet with Elton John, her first new music since the 2016 album Glory. Additionally, the song "Hold Me Closer" is more than just a captivating collaboration between two musical legends. (It already debuted at the top of the iTunes list.) It's also a poignant, full-circle moment for the themes that have always driven Britney's songs and fame, a reminder of the influence of her popularity.

Spears has been a timeless icon ever since the release of "...Baby One More Time" in 1998, which included the blockbuster images of her wearing the schoolgirl dress. Different audiences saw her sexualized white adolescence differently: girls and gays applauded her seeming self-empowerment, while parents bemoaned their children's purity and tabloids detected a newsworthy discrepancy between person and persona.

Because of all the controversy, it was incredibly simple to forget how wonderful she was as a music performer. Although she was vocally varied, the mischievous nasal tone that became her signature was highlighted in the biggest songs from her first two albums, 1999's "...Baby One More Time" and 2000's "Oops...I Did It Again."

It is still one of her strongest, most understated vocal performances, and it is being covered today. And her songs have continually addressed different types of intimacy and connection, both public and private, from "Lucky" to "Slave for You" to "Me Against the Music": dancing, romance, sex, celebrity.

When Blackout was released in 2007, she had already experienced fame's negative aspects as her divorce from Kevin Federline and her child custody issues had taken over her public image. In songs like "Piece of Me" ("Miss American Dream since I was 17") and "Gimme More," about crowds watching while she filthy dances, she turned these concepts into the starker, throbbing sounds.

Why Britney’s “Hold Me Closer” Comeback is So Powerful.

At first, even after the conservatorship had started, Spears could still be heard as the assured pop diva the world was accustomed to. Circus from 2009 had hits including "If U Seek Amy" and "Circus." These songs continued the themes of Blackout, but with a more lighthearted undertone, speaking candidly about "all of the females and all of the boys" pursuing her and being a "put-on-the-show sort of lady."

Since then, films have described how the residency's schedule and rules ensured she was always under the direction and supervision of her family. Spears has spoken about how the rigors of continual performance grew too much for her, especially when the residency kept getting extended year after year.

The CDs she put out during that time period lacked the energy of her earlier efforts. Britney Jean from 2013 appeared to be a money grab for the residency announcement. It had the least of her personality and was filled with duets with her now-separated sister and producer This was a rare second self-titled album using her full name.

Glory, a 2016 album, gained attention mostly because to the debate over the (unusually dull) video for its first song, "Make Me." Later, director Dave LaChapelle discussed how Britney's management-friendly release was substituted for her initial, harsher vision for the idea, in which she wanted to be confined and die.

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