The Bottom Line
10 year old Willow Smith has now genuinely arrived and she is throwing serious elbows. There is a touch of Rihanna here, but the girl power independence seems all Willow. It will certainly excite a pre-teen fan base, but it is also likely to impress a wide swath of adult pop fans. As a pop single, this is as good as anything yet released by teen star Justin Bieber and rivals the work of today's top adult pop stars. Welcome Willow! We'll make room for you.
- Irresistible pop melody
- Girl power lyrics
- Effortlessly breezy feel
- Nothing wrong here
- Second Willow Smith Single
- From Upcoming Debut Album
- Released March 2011 By Roc Nation
Guide Review - Willow Smith - "21st Century Girl"
Let's just put "Whip My Hair" in the rearview mirror. It did gain our attention and insure an introduction to the pop world for Willow Smith. However, if "21st Century Girl" is an indication of the true direction as a pop artist, then "Whip My Hair" is just a postscript. There is a refreshingly breezy feel to this girl power anthem that leaves me wanting to hear it again and eagerly anticipating what's next.
Willow Smith's pedigree as the daughter of Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith certainly helps in gaining a foot in the door of the music business. However, "21st Century Girl" indicates that she was well worth making room for in the studio. The opening vocals show influence from Rihanna, but as soon as Willow Smith tells us, "I'm the type of chick that likes to rock the beat," she begins moving into her own territory. The spoken word portions are a very pleasing contrast to the effortless choruses. This uptempo dance tune is more loose and comfortable than most anything recently released by Rihanna or anyone else. Willow Smith declares that she feels like she can "take over the world" if she can get her dreams out, and this song is only the beginning.
A mainstream pop song this catchy and lacking in pretensions is really not what was expected from Willow Smith after "Whip My Hair." In that way it is a quite pleasurable surprise and sounds a bit timeless from the first listen. With support from an appearance on the Oprah Winfrey Show, this song is likely to take off quickly in both sales and radio airplay. Willow Smith has proved she deserves a place at the pop table. Make room everyone.