Gotta get down on Wednesday? Rebecca Black conquers midweek primetime TV

Rebecca-Black-AGT

Image Credit: Chris Haston/NBC

It all started with a viral music video. “Friday” — ever heard it?

It produced an avalanche of Internet attention, and over the next five months, singer Rebecca Black became the constant target of vicious bullying, death threats, hate mail, and even CNN-reported pregnancy rumors. Then she emerged relatively unscathed, made friends with Katy Perry, went back into the studio to record a second song… and turned 14.

Two prime-time TV appearances last night — a taped interview on ABC’s Nightline and a live performance on America’s Got Talent — showed that the teen phenom, if slightly unaware at times, is nothing if not resilient.

Last night on Nightline segment with the alarming title “Rebecca Black: Dark Side Of Fame,” Black revealed that she has recently switched to home schooling after constant bullying at her school became too much for her to handle. “When I walk by, they’ll start singing ‘Friday’ in a really nasally voice,” Black said. “Or they’ll be like, ‘Hey, Rebecca! Guess what day it is!’”

Still, Black soldiers on: “I’ve had a lot of experience with not being liked,” she said. “You just can’t let it get to you.”

Footage from the interview showed Black signing autographs, taking photos with fans, and even talking openly in her bedroom about the varied types of cyber-bullying and hate mail she receives. Black and her mother both spoke candidly at their home in California about her career and how her home life has changed since that fateful “Friday” — which served as a startling reminder that, international pariah or not, she’s still a sensitive, precocious kid fresh out of seventh grade.

Black also made a live appearance on America’s Got Talent, where, after opening with a subtle nod to her second single, “My Moment,” she performed “Friday.” With the AutoTune off and the high-contrast video editing subtracted, Black looked and sounded refreshingly like a friendly teenager having a good time:

Tell us your reactions, PopWatchers: After watching Rebecca Black be a kid and be a star on her separate TV appearances last night, do you think she deserves all that negativity?

Read more on EW.com:
Friday, round two: Katy Perry and Rebecca Black re-team onstage
Rebecca Black’s behind-the-scenes footage of My Moment’ video: Watch here
Rebecca Black’s new single and video ‘My Moment’ has arrived — watch it here!

Comments (67 total) Add your comment
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  • Cristal Mitchum

    Youtube should be held accountable for the fraudulent promotion of this kid! there is no way she has the view counts they are showing on her videos! She is being solicited by these clowns at Youtube, and no one is going to turn down a chance at fame causing her to train wreck on live TV!

    • Just A Guy

      YouTube was also killed JFK.

      • crispy

        Youtube faked the moon landing

      • hob

        Heck, youtube even had a hand in the holocaust. Why do you think they play all those Hitler videos. They’re trying to humanize him, and make us sympathize with nazis. It worked too…HEIL YOUTUBE!!!

      • Chris

        Richard Kimble didn’t kill his wife. Youtube made the One Armed Man do it.

      • Troll

        lutz lolololol

    • roger

      i disagree that train wreck of yours. do you you think that conglemerates does not know what they doing? take note that girl can sing they hide it by autotune, and when that real voice blows up….$$$$$$$ piling to their comfort

    • PN

      A lot of people watch Youtube. If it is a lot, then there are some people that are watching the video over and over, which might have led to the 167 million views. Far more than those who are seeing it one time only.

    • BP

      I heard that YouTube is actually based out of KENYA!!

  • PDDB

    Nicely written.
    It’s unfortunately that Rebecca had to switch to home tutoring to escape the problems at school. Hopefully her fame doesn’t lead her down the wrong career and life paths that too many other famous teenagers faced.

    • roger

      unfortunately really i agree with that opinion

  • Holly

    She is a horrible singer, and that song is a plague upon humanity. But it is sad to see a 14 year old kid be hated by the whole world.

    • roger

      try to post your singing ability will you, pls to justify your cmment

      • Holly

        “Try to post my singing ability”? I think you are trying to say that I should not criticize her singing because I am no better? Oh, I am a horrible singer as well, make no mistake. But that does not change the fact that she is terrible.

      • crispy

        And at least you’re self aware.

      • @Roger

        Oh, c’mon, you know perfectly well what Holly was saying. I cannot sing any better than Rebecca either (well….maybe a lilttle better, because it wouldn’t take much), but Holly and Iare not out there making UTUBE videos and deluding ourselves. It is her mother who should be ashamed for putting her daughter in this position of ridicule.

  • Zac

    I’m sorry who ever wrote this how much did they pay u to say these lies? I mean she sounded pretty terrible being a music writer and signer it was dreadful. It goes to show money buys fame lol bad fame every one hates her.

    • Ryan

      You’re a dreadful writer. And speller. Go to school and learn something, then you can come back and insult people.

      • Zac

        I not dredful you dredful, you stoopid, shut up stoopid

    • roger

      again when ypu come out of your closet maybe rebecca is in ithere with green rose so that you can be freed of your miserable being right now

  • Jacob

    I figure, as long as she’s cool with it, so am I. I’m not about to mock a teenager for having fun, even if its mediocre, slightly off-key fun. You don’t have to watch. You don’t have to listen. Let her be, and she’ll eventually realize she’d rather be a orthodontist instead. Or something like that.

    • roger

      the besi qoute

      • Holly

        Yes the besiest qoute ever. When ypu come out of your closet ypu can say… or flaunt, and she ithere with green rose.

  • Vincent J. Eagan, III

    I never thought she deserved all that bullying and such, BUT, she needs to understand that SHE is the one who wanted to be famous, and grow a thick skin. Furthermore, I saw the AGT show last night, and sorry, but she was flat almost all the way through that performance. It was really bad. At least with the autotune it is sort of catchy, albeit really, really stupid lyrics.

    • roger

      areyou? how about you on that atg what can you say..or flaunt

    • Susie Q

      I don’t think she knew what it was like to be famous…I know when I was 13 I wanted to be a singer too…but I didn’t think about tours or crowds and media….I was just thinking about getting to sing and how fun it would be.

  • HatAttack

    Just out of curiosity, what motivates someone to send hatemail to a 13/14 year old? Save your anger for something that matters.

    • roger

      ^_^

  • Katie

    On agt when she sang it wasn’t the worst but it wasn’t the best. I think she should of waited until she was 18 to get a carrer in singing. I feel bad that people are bullying her but she kinda brought it on by posting Friday on YouTube. And if she really hated getting bullied than she should of stayed out of the spotlight instead of realeasing a new song.

    • roger

      aw your point is so simple but hard to answer… haha wew

    • Reggie1971

      Posting a song on youtube is not exactly putting yourself in the spotlight. The number of teens who post songs (with awful performances) to the site is endless. The people who ridiculed her are the ones that put her in the spotlight. As long as she’s been subjected to such nastiness, I don’t see anything wrong with her appearing with Katy Perry and getting to be on America’s Got Talent. She deserves a little happiness as compensation for the hate she’s been subjected to.

  • David

    I’m a big music fan and my tastes span many eras and genres. I have to say that I kind of enjoy “Friday” – in the same way I might enjoy a bad B-movie. The fact is, the tune is catchy and Rebecca Black’s singing is not all that bad. The lyrics are really what is so obnoxious about it.

    If I had been her or her mother, I probably would have taken one look at those inane lyrics from ARK Music Factory and said, “this is garbage – bring me something else.” But if she had done that, would she still be getting all this attention? I kind of doubt it.

    As it is, I think the kid’s getting a bum rap. With a 167 million hits on YouTube*, she’s clearly getting a lot of repeat listeners, and yet most are apparently just too “cool” to admit it.

    The fact is, after listening to her sing on several occasions now, I’m not yet convinced that she’s any worse of a singer than say, a Britney Spears. There’s certainly nothing wrong with her voice that a (good) studio producer couldn’t fix, and she seems to have the charisma for it.

    Sadly for Rebecca, American audiences are fickle and very critical when it comes to their pop-stars, but I suspect she’ll be “big in Japan.”

    *@Cristal Mitchum: YouTube most definitely didn’t inflate the view count on her video. Some people genuinely enjoyed it, most just came back because it was like watching a train wreck. Either way, it’d be stupid for them to inflate the numbers, since they had to pay her base on views.

    • roger

      whehew

      • roger

        haha!!! do you, japan only why is that?

    • Cristal Mitchum

      When you got that much money how does it hurt to burn a few dollars? Oh and trust me Youtube is upping lots of video view counts. Believe and trust me on this one.

      • roger

        yap, they are there before we we’re born ant they really knew what they are doing for

      • Alex

        That’s rich. “Believe and trust me on this one.” How about proving this accusation? That might gain some trust.

  • Tori

    I’m 14 years old too and I find it hard to believe.
    I mean, she’s the same age as me, except she looks like she’s 17, and she has so many haters.
    I can’t believe people would bully someone like that (though I’m not a fan of Rebecca), it’s not any different just because she’s famous. I feel bad that she has to be homeschooled now (she’s probably a nice, typical teenager) because she was just trying to have fun with a cute little music video. Guess her 15 minutes of fame will be up soon. :/

  • roger

    cristal? on your blame that you tube should be hold acoountable? it is a big no hehe… those sattelite outside this planet and those countries who owned them

  • Doreen

    say what you want but I think the girl has a nice tone to her voice, but she isn’t ready for this sort of performing IMO.

  • PN

    Rebecca Black was that good on America’s Got Talent in her performance. Even doing Katy Perry-ish dance moves and had her own performance style with the dancers! I like the song better in that live setting that I ever did when seeing it on YouTube and minus all the Autotune effects.

  • Lily

    “Friday” appeared in an episode of the highschool musical dramedy “Glee” that dealt with the issue of highschool bullying (e.g. when Kurt was chosen as prom queen). The actor who played “Kurt” was verbally bullied almost every day at highschool because of his high pitched voice.
    .
    I can’t imagine that Ms Black left her school “just” because of the verbal taunting as mentioned in the article above. Maybe there is more serious taunting going on. There is also no information about possible actions from teachers or the school…

    • Doreen

      me either but all the luck in the world for her.

      • Lily

        Yeah… Wish her the best.

    • Anonymous

      I could understand somewhat of the taunts, but being asked what the day of the week seems more like trying to be funny that mean.

      But really, why would people send hate mail? Do these people not have a life? Do they not know what is happening in the world?

  • PN

    I think she does need to make a pop album, but take a year with making it to make it sound right for the public.Get the best producers (A-list as well as the underrated and lesser known) and musicians in the music business to make it. I’m not a big fan of rush released albums to capitalize on unexpected fame. Just make a quality album and she will be successful in music.

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