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Travie McCoy ft. Bruno Mars - 'Billionaire'

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Fraser McAlpine | 10:43 UK time, Saturday, 24 July 2010

Travie McCoy

If ever there was a sign that the collective economies of the world are in something of a troubled state, it's this. In the past, impoverished pop stars would have wished to become millionaires. They'd have waxed lyrical about the kind of lifestyle that kind of money would bring with it, the swank and the plushness, the shoulder-rubbing and the influence.

Of course, what with the Lottery generation and inflation and the recession and all, being a millionaire doesn't quite have the same clout as it used to. There are people who own tiny flats in Central London who are - on paper at least - millionaires, and they're still searching down the back of the sofa for espresso change.

The best you can expect - and this is if you make quite an effort to publicise the fact that you ARE a millionaire - is for waiters in restaurants to be extra nice, just in case you're a flash tipper. And probably, if you've been going around telling everyone that you are rich, they'd be right.

(No video. Cuss-lurgey.)

Meanwhile, Travie, the former Mr Katy Perry and lead dude with Gym Class Heroes, has set his sights on the higher ground, where there are fewer people - and by people I mean the common herd of conventional millionaires - mucking up his view of the good life.

Oh sure, he's brought his pal Bruno along to sing about it, in a Jack Johnsonny, ukulele-friendly* kind of way, but everyone else can just shove off, this is McCoy mountain, and it is made of gold. All you cash-strapped millionaire types can just do one, frankly.

Trouble is, he's made it seem like such a welcoming place to go. All that nice gentle skanking, the pretty song, the messages of hope and generosity. Even the one about making sure that everyone he loves has "a couple" of dollars, which implies either that he has half a billion close friends, or is more than a little stingy.

OK the swearing is a little ripe for genteel ears - he'll have to cut that right out if he really wants a TV show like Oprah Winfrey's...or wants to meet the Queen, come to that. But the rest of it feels like one of those optimistic, hopeful songs that people sing to themselves when the chips are down and they need cheering up.

In fact, I would imagine that is exactly how such a thing came to exist in the first place. Which implies that both Travie and Bruno would probably settle for being millionaires after all. Or even hundred-thousandaires, providing there's also a decent pension package.

Four starsDownload: Out now

BBC Music page

(Fraser McAlpine)

* Not that there ARE ukuleles, you understand. But if there were, they'd be made welcome.

Zillasays says: "It is the song of the summer for me as Bruno Mars smashes another single out of the park with his strong voice."

Neon Limelight says: "Reggae acoustics mixed with standard drum beats in the summer-infused track."

Spin Or Bin Music says: "I've had this stuck in my head all week!"


  • Comment number 1.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 2.

    This is gonna be an absolutely huge hit . Reasons to follow tomorrow .

  • Comment number 3.

    This song came on the radio whilst I was driving in the hot sun with the windows down earlier this week. Was just perfect!

  • Comment number 4.

    It'll be a huge hit spirit, for sure; there's no need for reasons. Just because it's gunna be huge doesn't I have to like it though. Mwahahaha.

  • Comment number 5.

    Fantastic Summery song with some great lyrics about helping people out. If only the weather was good here though...

  • Comment number 6.

    Yoohoo I´m drunk and I´m back! And I´ve got a minute to spare! This track is just crap! No kiddin´

  • Comment number 7.

    THANK YOU! SOmeone who agrees with me... it stireke the soppy-song-for summer chord so it's bound to be a hit despite how narcissistic the track actually is.

  • Comment number 8.

    Ew. Just because the song has an easy-listening style acoustic guitar rhythm, it doesn't make it a good summer song.

  • Comment number 9.

    Well I said this would be huge on Jedward a while back , and challenging for number 1 with The Wanted and Yolanda for this Sunday's number 1.

    And for people who want to try to come up with conspiracy theories etc. and want to suggest that strange forces are at work , THEN GO AND READ WHICH DATE I said it on !!!
    Last week , way before any CHART is announced.
    Going to the bank now, when I return , I will post the factors relating to this song and why I thought it would be a big hit .


  • Comment number 10.

    Yeah , 903 on Jedward ,last week , I said that I felt that this Sunday's number 1 would be The Wanted , this or Yolanda .

    The reasons why ,I felt that this would be a big hit are :

    1)Absolutely monumental chorus hook with huge singalong potential.

    2)Lyrically, extremely memorable , cutting edge and witty .

    3)The Summer reggae feel ,inherent in the track ,is very uplifting and topical .

    4) The other huge hook of :
    "Everytime I close My eyes ,
    I see my name in shining lights "

    5) The "oh, oh , oh ,oh " refrain , that is another huge singalong hook .

    6) Now up to 20 million views on You tube .

    A fantastic pop single with huge commercial possibilities .

  • Comment number 11.

    I still think it's naff.

  • Comment number 12.

    Well obviously not everyone will like it .
    But hundreds of thousands will countrywide .
    It should secure sales of over 200,000 copies, by the end of it's chart run in the UK .
    Just a hunch.

  • Comment number 13.

    Huh? I don't see anyone talking about 'conspiracy theories'. If someone predicted the top 20 all in order then maybe, but predicting hit singles is not difficult nowadays. I've always thought Billionaire would be a sure-fire contender for no.1 - I just thought it was obvious, so I haven't bothered mentioning it.

    Anyway, I won't be buying it (I don't buy many singles), but it's a nice summer tune, and I wouldn't turn it off if it came on the radio.


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