Apple Head Jimmy Iovine Thinks Ladies Need Special Help Finding Music

Jimmy Iovine, who is famous for producing everyone and cofounding Interscope, is now heading up things over at Apple Music. Yesterday, he went on "CBS This Morning" to talk about that Apple Music ad everybody went gaga for starring Taraji P. Henson, Kerry Washington and Mary J. Blige, in which they just hang out and talk about and listen to music, as ladies will do. (I am not going to get into how the writers had Kerry Washington say the service is like having “a boyfriend who makes you a mixtape in your laptop” or that the ad ends with the words INSTANT BOYFRIEND MIXTAPE written across the screen, because I actually called you all here today for something else.)


Iovine, accompanied by Blige, was on the show to unveil the newest commercial starring the trio and to discuss the creative process behind the ads. And something else I’m forgetting? Oh, that's right, and also to mansplain music. Because, like math and driving, it is not a thing girls are good at!

“I always knew that women find it very difficult at times—some women—to find music,” Iovine said, just getting started. “And this helps make it easier with playlists, but they’re curated by real people. They’re not made by algorithms alone. They’re made by algorithms but with a human touch.”

I have no doubt that Jimmy Iovine has the best of intentions when he says this, but I also know that this idea that women need men to help them know what music to like was getting old a million years ago. Any woman who has spent time reading, writing, buying, listening to or going to see live music has definitely had music mainsplained to her before, many times, so nothing groundbreaking there. And somehow, miraculously, it never gets less annoying. I’m even willing to give Iovine credit for the “some women” afterthought qualification—I mean, we’re all just doing our best, right?—but his answer to how he came up with the creative concept really isn’t helping.

“I just thought of a problem: You know, girls are sitting around, you know, talking about boys, or complaining about boys, when they have their heart broken or whatever,” Iovine said, which, oh great. “And they need music for that, right? So it’s hard to find the right music. Not everybody has the right list, or knows a DJ or something.”

Haha. Okay, sure. I'm not saying that women don’t ever sit around talking about boys. I have done this myself! Many times! But I love that that’s the go-to image evoked here; how we’re all probably just sitting around talking—oh, sorry, complaining—about boys while blowing on our nails with nothing but silence between thoughts because there's no music, and we're all just wishing someone would make a soundtrack for us cuz musxiks is too hardz. (If you are a lady and you are reading this, maybe you can pay a male DJ, the only kind there is, to help you? Otherwise, just finish your nails and hope for the best.)

Again, I know Iovine probably thought he was speaking in a language ladies can understand but yeah, no.

The interview with Blige and Iovine is below. The new ad, which, like the first, is directed by Ava Duvernay, appears in the segment.  

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