This rising pop songstress is bigger than any label you might try to stick on her
"See me holding up my middle finger to the world... 'cause I'm not just a pretty girl."
Maggie Lindemann refuses to be defined by her statistics, though they certainly don't hurt her case. After building her career as a social media influencer - the songstress has over 2 million Instagram followers and 433,000 Twitter followers - Lindemann moved to Los Angeles and threw herself into the world of music making. Between her established fan base and her irresistibly poppy music, the success in numbers has followed. Currently, her Spotify boasts over 14 million monthly listeners. Her music video for the Cheat Codes and Cade remix of her single "Pretty Girl" has well over half a million views after dropping just two weeks ago and over 97 million streams on Spotify.
Put that aside, though, and consider her as an artist - as a person. Lindemann was born in Dallas, Texas where she sang in church choirs and school musicals. At age 16, she threw caution to the wind and moved to Los Angeles. That was two years ago, and now the 18-year-old is doing takeovers of the Billboard Instagram account and getting her songs included in Apple Music "Songs of the Summer" playlists. She spends her days bouncing between the studio, her friends, and traveling. In an interview with Popdust, she reflected on how her career has grown. "It used to be a lot of vocal work and piano lessons and that kind of stuff, and dance and stuff like that, and now it's more rehearsals and getting up and leaving all the time and traveling."
Her 2015 debut single "Knocking On Your Heart" is a sentimental dance ballad, where lyrics like "I always try to tell myself that I'll fall in love with someone else, but oh, my stubborn heart is set on you" are gently crooned over deep bass beats and the chorus is paired with clanging bells and vocal reverb that echoes through listeners' souls. It's no happy tween-pop banger, but a very serious entrance into a career where her audience brushes her off at their own loss.
Later that year, "Couple of Kids" goes even deeper into the ballad vibe, with swelling piano and string accompaniments underneath lines like "We're just a couple of kids, sneaking away for a kiss." "Things" followed shortly in 2016 and brought out more of the dance-pop sound that Lindemann excels at. Her voice is still soft and perfectly on pitch, but studio-styled snaps create the beat over samples of a voice going "ba na na na na na na" and everything is as effortlessly engineered as any Ariana Grande single. (Lindemann's thoughts on the track: "The production on that sounds amazing, I love the production on it.")
"Pretty Girl" is technically her most recent single, though there are now four official versions of it - the original, and three remixes by Ye, Taylor Wise, and Cheat Codes x Cade respectively. The most recent has received by far the most acclaim and attention, but it's been a steady grind of work to get there. The lyrics are defiant and aggressive; she sings "Some days I'm broke, some days I'm rich. Some days I'm nice, some days I can be a bitch" and "See me holding up my middle finger to the world - fuck your ribbons, fuck your pearls, 'cause I'm not just a pretty girl." It's both a great musical middle finger to everyone who tries to write her off as just some Instagram star - "being a social media person isn't taken as seriously or looked very highly upon. So it was and still is very hard to branch away from that title" - and a highly personal song that works as a typical pop tune and a totally dance-able track. (Of the remixes, Lindemann said "I like how they made it so you can dance to it and have a good time, and it's something you could hear at the club."
Looking forward, Lindemann is working on putting together a more concrete collection of songs - "we haven't really decided what that's gonna be yet, but we're definitely working on something" - and growing herself as a musician and a person. Her most recent tweet (at time of writing) puts it pretty succinctly:
I'm only gettin cuter!
— Maggie Lindemann (@MaggieLindemann) June 7, 2017
Even to this day, "Dark Tournament" remains the defining shonen "Tournament Arc."
Oftentimes, it's impossible to separate the quality of the anime we grew up watching from the sense of nostalgia those series evoke.
Case in point: Dragon Ball Z. Historically, DBZ is likely the most influential anime series of all time, both redefining the shonen genre for every series that came after it and introducing an entire generation of Western kids to Japanese animation through the legendary Funimation dub on Cartoon Network's Toonami block. Chances are high that if you meet someone who loves anime and grew up in the late '90s or early 2000s, they'll have a deeply personal bond with DBZ.
At the same time, it's hard to argue that DBZ holds up in the modern day, especially for new viewers coming in with fresh eyes. The pacing of the original series is super slow, the fights drag out forever, and while DBZ created so many of shonen's most prevalent tropes ("This isn't even my final form!"), almost everything DBZ ever did has since been done better by other series.
About a year after being accused of selling furniture to ICE detention centers, e-commerce site Wayfair is in another controversy.
Wayfair, the e-commerce website beloved by millennials on a budget who don't want their apartments to look just like IKEA showrooms, is no stranger to controversy.
Last summer, employees of the company organized a protest after allegations surfaced that Wayfair had sold $200,000 worth of furniture to border detention facilities. Now, Wayfair is being suspected of trafficking missing children in their furniture.