First Hit #1: December 13, 2003
We wrap up 2003 with Outkast, with a song that has plenty of things lurking under the surface of an otherwise glossy pop track. There’s a certain obsession with the past, made explicit in the video, but more subtle in the call and response of some of the lyrics and references to obsolete technology – Polaroids were largely irrelevant by 2003, but are referenced in the song’s most famous line. Then again, obsolescence is a theme, the relationship depicted in the song is basically the Polaroid camera – beautiful and wonderful for a time, in its death throws in 2003. The lyrics themselves are basically about a couple lying to themselves and others, stuck in a relationship that they stay in out of obligation, but since the song is so upbeat and silly it kind of paints the opposite picture. Hey Ya is a lie, a beautiful, catchy, wonderful song about something that is working its way to an ugly ending.