What comes to your mind when you hear the name Britney Spears? That young and beautiful sassy girl with a golden voice? Yes, that makes the two of us. I was a die-hard fan of Britney Spears back in the days, thanks to my dad for playing her songs on repeat. But I must admit she had an angelic voice, and all her songs were hit music.
Although her active singing years were cut short by court cases in 2018 and other personal projects, her timeless songs are still receiving airplay. Some have even been adopted and remixed to appeal to the current generation. Britney Spears's songs were very easy to sing along to. I still hear “.... I am not that innocent...” echoing in my mind anytime I remember Britney Spears.
The memory of Britney gives me nostalgic memories of the early-mid to late-‘90s when we used to listen to her songs together with Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson, Maria Carey, Celine Dion, and many more. My dad loved these songs and would listen to them non-stop in high volume, especially on weekends.
Going Back in time...
This week, I have decided to go a little musical and discuss some of my favorite old school musicians and music that I loved. It has been a minute since I last reviewed nostalgic music and musicians. Music reviews are my favorite because I get to listen to all the top songs and the best albums of the artists am writing about when writing.
The nostalgia and the memories that this invokes cannot be explained in words. It is truly magical.
Have you ever had that feeling when listening to an old favorite song that it carries you away and takes you back to when you first listened to the song? That is what I feel every day I write about my favorite 90s hits. I am usually taken on a time machine of some sort to the exact time and place I first listened to the song.
Britney Spears music takes me back to those days when I was just starting to listen carefully to music and writing down the lyrics. This is a habit that I formed in primary school. We would write the lyrics on colorful hardcover books and decorate it with photos of the artist all over. This was satisfying even if it was just meant for my eyes only.
Brief Background History of Britney Spears
Britney Jean Spears (Popularly referred to just as Britney Spears) was born on 2nd December 1981. She is a singer, songwriter, dancer, and actress from the United States. She is recognized for influencing the rebirth of teen pop in the late ‘90s through to the early 2000s. Britney was referred to as the princess of Pop back then.
She signed with Jive Records in 1997, at the age of 15, after participating in theater shows and TV series. Her first two studio albums were “Baby One More Time” and “Oops!.... I Did It Again. These two were both certified diamonds in the United States and were a worldwide success and eventually became the best-selling albums of all time.
Following the success of the first albums, she, later on, released Britney in 2001, and In the Zone two years later. These two albums had more adult and mature themes. She also made her feature film debut as a starting part in Crossroads.
In 2007, she was the executive producer of her fifth studio album called Blackout. This album was widely regarded as her best work. Due to many publicized personal issues, promotion of the record was limited and she was later placed under conservatorship involuntarily.
She went on to record top chart albums like Circus in 2008, and Femme Fatale in 2011 followed by an array of singles in the US charts. Britney: Piece of Me, a four-year residency at Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino in LA was launched to promote her next two albums called Britney Jean in 2003, and Glory in 2016.
Britney’s legal struggle over her conservatorship was made public in 2019, sparking the #FreeBritney movement. In 2021, here public testimony shows that she accused her management team and family of mistreatment and stated a wish to end the conservatorship.
Britney Spears has four solo top singles on the Billboard Hot 100 in the United States:
- Baby One More Time
- Hold it Against Me
Britney’s elaborately choreographed videography is seen as a pivotal factor in her career’s success, for which she received the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award. She has received a Grammy Award, fifteen Guinness World Records, six MTV Video Music Awards, seven Billboard Music Awards, including the Millennium Award, the inaugural Radio Disney Icon Award, and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
She is regarded as a pop legend, having sold over 100 million records worldwide, including over 70 million in the United States, making her one of the world’s best-selling music artists. Billboard recognized her as the eighth-biggest artist of the 2000s. She is also the 4th best-selling female album artist of the Nielsen SoundScan era in the United States, as well as the best-selling female album artist of the 2000s.
In 2004, Britney collaborated with Elizabeth Arden, Inc. to establish a perfume brand, with sales exceeding $1.5billion as of 2012. According to Forbes, Britney was the highest-paid female artist in 2002 and 2012. She has also topped the list of the most searched celebrities seven times in the last twelve years, a record since the beginning of the internet.
Britney Spears Early Childhood
Britney began taking dance lessons at the age of three in her hometown of Kentwood, Louisiana and was chosen to perform as a solo artist at the yearly performance. She had her local stage debut at the age of five, singing “What Child is This?” during her kindergarten graduation.
She also took gymnastics and singing classes as a child, and she won numerous state-level competitions and children’s talent events. She found what she was supposed to do at a young age. Britney’s mother Lynne drove her to Atlanta, Georgia when she was 8 years old, to audition for the 90s revival of Mickey Mouse Club. Casting director Matt Casella turned her down because she was too young, but he did introduce her to Nancy Carson, a New York City Talent agent.
Carson was delighted with Britney’s singing and advised her to enroll in the Professional Performing Arts School. Lynne later moved to a sublet apartment in New York. Spears landed her first professional job as the understudy for Tina Denmark in the off-Broadway musical Ruthless! She was also a participant in the popular TV show Start Search and appeared in several advertisements.
She was cast in The Mickey Mouse Club in December 92, alongside Christina Aguilera, Justin Timberlake, Ryan Gosling, and Keri Russell. She returned to Mississippi after the show was canceled in 1994 and enrolled at McComb’s Parklane Academy. Despite making friends with the majority of her classmates, she compared school to opening scenes in “Clueless” stating that she was bored.
Rising to Stardom
Britney was in talks with manager Lou Perlman in 1997 to join the female pop group Innosense. Lynne sought the advice of family and friends and industry lawyer Larry Rudolph and provided a cassette of Britney singing over a Whitney Houston karaoke tune, as well as photographs.
Rudolph decided he wanted to pitch her to record labels, therefore she needed a professional demo. He provided Britney an unused Ton Braxton tune, which she prepared for a week before recording her voice in the studio. Spears took the recording to New York and spoke with executives from four labels before returning to Kentwood the following day.
Three labels turned her down, claiming that the audience preferred pop bands like the Backstreet Boys and the Spice Girls, and that “there wasn’t going to be another Madonna, Debbie Gibson, or Tiffany. Jive Records executive replied to Rudolph’s calls two weeks later. Jeff, the vice president of A&R said it was unusual to hear a young girl deliver emotional content and commercial appeal. She was later signed to the company.
For a month, she was assigned to work with producer Eric Foster White, who allegedly modified her voice from lower and less poppy delivery to distinctively unmistakably Britney. President Clive Calder ordered a whole album after hearing the recorded content.
First Album Release
After returning to the United States, Britney Spears embarked on a mall promotion to promote her upcoming first album. Her set considered four songs, and she was supported by two backup dancers. Her debut concert tour as an opening act for the NSYNC followed.
Baby One More Time was released in 1999. After a month, it debuted at number one on Billboard 200 and was certified two-time platinum by RIAA. The album topped the charts in fifteen countries and sold over 10 million copies in a single year. It went on to become the best-selling record by a teen performer.
The album’s lead song, “...Baby One More Time, was released. Jive Records originally intended for its music video to be animated; however, Spears rejected the idea and presented the final concept of a Catholic schoolgirl. The track sold 500,000 copies on its first day and peaked at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 for two weeks in a row. It sold over 10 million copies worldwide.
The album’s third song “You Drive Me Crazy” became a top-ten hit song internationally, pushing “Baby One More Time album to even greater popularity. The album sold over 25 million copies worldwide, ranking it among the best-selling albums of all time.
In 199, Britney began her first headlining tour in North America, the Baby One More Time Tour, which was well welcomed by fans and critics. It sparked a debate on because of her racy clothing. In 2000, the tour was extended with the You Drive Me Crazy Tour. During the concert, Britney debuted tracks from her upcoming second album.
Looking Back at The Life and the Musical Journey of Britney Spears
With hundreds of songs under her name, Britney spears are undeniably one of the most popular and influential artists of the ‘90s through to the 2000s. I love her choice of songs because they are timeless and can blend with any generation. It is amazing that they are still being used in movies, TV shows, and radio.
Britney Spears has demonstrated herself to be many things over the course of her almost 18 years of a solo career. She was just an innocent high-schooler back then. However, like those who came before her i.e., Madonna and Michael Jackson, she redefined the modern pop music industry. She actually brought a shift in the way songs were written back then. She was a trendsetter and one very influential with a massive list of hit singles.
Honestly, her influence on the music world should be underestimated at all. She is one of the most resilient artists that remained relevant with classic hit after hit back then.
The Untold Story of The Life of Britney Spears
Britney spears is one strong lady who has been through a lot in life. Behind her hit songs and smiles, Britney has been handling a lot of court issues around the conservatorship. Britney has been very strong over the years to hold the cruelty and pain within and not letting it show in public.
Since the ‘90s, Britney Spears has been a household name, thanks to her hundreds of hits songs, albums, and tours. Not to mention all of the drams she’s been involved in during her time in the spotlight; for years, headlines would condemn and appraise her in equal measures.
Everything in Britney’s life including her relationship with Justin Timberlake, her music, dressing, separations, and more would make it to media back then.
Despite rising to stardom in the later ‘90s, her time in the spotlight is far from over. Unfortunately, it is no longer in the hit song and record-breaking manner like before. She is still hitting the headlines but this time it is all about court cases. One after the other.
How Did Britney Come to be in the Limelight?
So, how did Britney Spears come to be in the limelight? How did the become an overnight sensation and one of the most popular and influential artists in the world? How did she rise to stardom?
These are some of the questions many will be asking. Mostly those who have just come to learn about Britney during the ongoing conservatorship case. Also, kids of the current generation, may not directly relate to the old nostalgic memory that we hold dear about Britney spears.
To give you the context, Britney grew up in Louisiana and was taken throughout the country for auditions, callbacks, and anything else that would place her on the map of fame. Her family was supportive but not wealthy, and she rarely saw her father during her childhood, when she moved regularly back and forth from Louisiana to New York with her mother.
Britney won a position in “Mickey Mouse Clubhouse” at 11 years old and stayed for two years until the show was canceled after two seasons. Following the discontinuation of the show, she concentrated solely on her music career, singing with Jive Records and recording the well-known and beloved song “Baby One More Time.” The song surged to the top of the charts. Following this, her album debuted at number one and became an instant success, propelling her to the forefront of celebrity headlines back then.
Britney Spears’ Instant Success: Story of a Music Prodigy
It was clear that Britney was thrust into the music industry before she was a full-fledged adult. She became a global popstar at the age of 16. Being exposed to different ways of life at a young age, at a period when criticism of musicians, particularly women, was at an all-time high. It was really tough for the little girl back then.
Dealing with a variety of events, challenges, and the relentless hammering of judgment from the world caused Britney her misery. Behind the success and popularity was a sixteen-year-old girl who is ecstatic but also terrified, and I believe that certain people took advantage of that. As a result, she had the infamous breakdown in 2007, when she shaved her head and damaged a paparazzi's car with an umbrella.
Britney’s father was the focus at that time. It is not strange that her father was the one in charge of her car; as he was the one who had conservatorship over here. During the 2021 documentary called “Framing Britney”, it was said that he was a money-minded man who was rarely in her life and was never there to do his part as a parent and support her.
About the Britney Spears Conservatorship Court Battle
Recently, Britney Spears hit the headlines again, but this time it was about the ongoing conservatorship case. For over 13 years, Britney has been under conservatorship. This means she has very little influence over her life. Britney is not allowed to access her finances, or even set her own schedule. Even worse, her relationships are controlled, where she lives, and even her publicity /social media.
In California, a conservatorship happens when the court appoints someone or a firm to take care of an adult who is deemed unfit to care for themselves; Jamie Spears, her father was appointed as a conservator.
This began in 2008 when there were concerns about her mental wellbeing after she had a public breakdown. I kinda agree with the line of thought that considers this as a human right violation. Britney is in no situation to have such restricted influence over her day-to-day life; she is not paralyzed or in a state where she cannot function to have such control. What has been going on over the past 13 years? Where have the years gone when no one did anything to aid her? Earlier in her conservatory career, she was prevented from seeing her children and was forced to do concert after the show while still releasing music on a regular basis.
This circumstance could produce diseases and illnesses in anyone, let alone someone in the public glare. Britney was admitted to a mental health facility in March 2019 for stress and medication concerns, confirming this. We don't know what happens in her day-to-day existence, how she's treated, or how long she can hold on. The conservatorship has been a legal storm, with a lengthy period spanning the last 13 years. What we do know is that Britney is in pain, and the public and press are rallying in her favor by calling for a change and the release of Britney from conservatorship.
More About the #FREEBRITNEY Movement
Fans and supporters are without a doubt Britney's greatest supporters. Throughout her conservatorship, she has had a slew of followers at her side, cheering her on in any way they could. Protests, marches, and chanting outside courts demanding Britney's release from legal incarceration.
Countless internet blogs, podcasts, and social media comments have been made to spread the information about this chaotic circumstance. The movement peaked from 2019 until the present in terms of continual news, updates, and more on conservatorship.
What's been fascinating is how fans have decoded "Britney's" social media post in which she professes to be fine, healthy, and happy. Many of those posts make little sense, and many fans and followers of the "Free Britney" movement believe there are hidden messages hidden behind all those emojis.
The Progress So Far...
Britney Spears testified in court for the first time on her behalf on June 23, 2021, claiming that the conservatorship has left her traumatized and depressed. Aside from these heinous comments, the judge's final ruling was that her plea to have Jamie Spears, her father, removed from conservatorship was denied. It astounds all Britney admirers, sympathizers, and even those who are unaware that she is still under conservatorship despite her plea.
Britney has also expressed her feelings of being battered, left out, and alone. She is certain that the conservatorship is abusive. It was also claimed that she was put on an incredibly strong narcotic called "Lithium" without her consent, which caused her to become inebriated and disoriented.
She added that she simply wants to enjoy her life, get married, and have children, in addition to being compelled to labor for years without a break. Britney is unable to do so because it has been said that she has an IUD within her that her father will not allow to be removed.
It is unfortunate that Britney Spear’s court battle and the conservatorship dispute have led her to stop singing. Well, I don’t blame her dad. We have seen great musicians die because of lacking guidance. So I would wish the court to approach the issue with sensitivity, but again, they should be able to strike a balance with her need. She needs the rights in order to be motivated to build her talent.
How I wish she could get back to the studio and released more hits. I will always be her die-hard fan.
How do you remember Britney Spears?
How old were you when you first heard her songs?