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Tour Spotlight: Katy Perry

November 15, 2017

Amidst all of the controversy and bizarreness in Katy Perrys career, its often easy to forget that she is one of the most successful pop artists of all-time.In fact, if youre a fan of the scoreboard comeback in debates, the numbers look pretty good for Perry. Hers is the most followed Twitter account in the world, at press time with 105,550,371 followers. She was the first artist to have multiple 1 billion view videos on YouTube.Perry has embarked upon another world tour, this time flanking her No. 1 album Witness, on the heels of a press tour to promote the album that was unlike anything ever seen before.[vc_video link="" el_width="80" align="center"]In the post-Madonna world, artistsparticularly female pop artistsare expected to grow and reinvent themselves as often as possible. Prior to Witness, Perry had stuck with a formula that made her unfathomably rich and successful. She became known for a brand of sugary, tongue-in-cheek sexy pop that was palatable for everyone from kids who thought she was really talking about melting popsicles, to adults who tuned in to Sesame Street for the first time in decades just to see her.In the lead-up to Witness however, Perry had an awakening. She suddenly became more outspoken on social issues, no matter how nave she sounded at times in doing so. She cut her hair short, and began dressing and photographing in a more artistic fashion, as opposed to the sultry imagery she leaned on before. More shocking though, was the fact that she let everyone very much into her life. For years, Perry has publicly appeared in an Adidas tracksuit in order to thwart paparazzi looking for a window into her life. This time, she opened the windows and let them in, airing a 90+ hour livestream, during which fans could watch her eat, sleep and have deep discussions with a variety of celebrities and thought leaders inside her home.The stunt opened the door for discussion about the nuance of the discussions on the stream, and prompted plenty of analysis. In any event, it produced publicity.Unfortunately for Perry, every project she ever releases will always be in the shadow of Teenage Dream, her 2010 album which by many metrics is one of the greatest pop records ever made. The album was just the second in history after Michael Jacksons Bad, to have five number one singles, and the only album by a female artist to ever do so. The string of hits kept Perry in the Billboard Hot 100 for 69 consecutive weeks between 2010 and 2011. The closest anyone has came to topping her was The Chainsmokers during their meteoric run in 2016-2017 beginning with their smash hit Closer. Six songs from Teenage Dream went multi-platinum as singlesthe title track, California Gurls, Firework, E.T., Last Friday Night and The One That Got Away.So even when Witness debuted at No. 1the first album by a female artist to do so since Lady Gagas Joanne in 2016it was labelled a flop by some.Witness is indeed a dramatic departure from her straightforward pop offerings of yesteryear, opting for an electro-pop feel, as Perry working with new head of A&R Lauren Glucksman, who has lengthy connections with brooding songstress BANKS and Elie Goulding. That said, its far from being a commercial disaster.What remains to be seen moving forward is if Perry can now keep pace with the likes of Halsey, who is making similar music and enjoying more radio play at the moment.When it comes to a live performance though, Perry still has her iconic catalogue to dip into, and a colossal budget to put on the wild stage show shes become known for.Maybe Left Shark or the arm-waggling dance kid will make an appearance.

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