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Five questions with . . . . Robin Thicke

Posted 10:17am on Wednesday, Aug. 14, 2013

Robin Thicke is enjoying a pop culture moment with the upbeat, Marvin Gaye-esque single Blurred Lines, but the song didn’t click with his record label when he previewed it last summer.

“The record company didn’t get it. They didn’t even pay for the video. Remy Martin paid for the video,” said the 36-year-old crooner, who is a spokesperson for the liquor brand with his wife, actress Paula Patton. “And as soon as the record company saw the video, they said, ‘This is a smash.’”

The ubiquitous Blurred Lines is the longest-running No. 1 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 chart this year, with nine weeks on top. The video — the unrated version with nude models prowling was banned from YouTube — has more than 125 million views. The title track from Thicke’s fifth album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart this week after selling 177,000 units, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

In an interview with The Associated Press, Thicke talked about the song’s success, switching up his style and what’s up next.

1. Did Blurred Lines sound like a hit to you?

It did to me, and then I went into the record label and I played it for the heads of the label, head of pop radio … and everybody just went, ‘Nice. Nice.’ Got no response; was kind of surprised by that.

2. Why do you think the song is connecting with so many people?

The reason why Blurred Lines is breaking records is because rarely do you have a song playing on all pop stations and all black stations, all of the urban stations. And because I have an urban fan base and urban audience, I wonder if it was a brand-new artist, would they play ( Blurred Lines) on black radio? I don’t think so. They might not. … Someone was like, ‘It’s like (Outkast’s) Hey Ya!

3. How do you think the naked video helped push the song to the top of the charts?

I had just enough fans to get some people into it at the beginning, and then the naked video was just so good, it was kind of the thing people immediately say, ‘Have you seen this?’ — which is kind of what (director) Diane (Martel) wanted to do.

4. What are your thoughts on the controversy (some critics called the video and lyrics offensive to women)?

For all the controversy and all this other stuff that people try to make it seem like that’s more important, what’s really important about music and entertainment is to entertain and make people feel good.

5. What’s next?

I want to get right in the studio. I want to make a country album, a Christmas album, a gospel album. I’m like, ‘Finally!’ I’m ready to make four albums right now.

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