“I Don’t Mind” by Usher and Juicy J

This is another ‘respect for women’ song about a stripper, but this one is actually fairly sincere-sounding (apart from Juicy J’s disgusting rap verse, which doesn’t match the rest of the song at all, but we’ve pretty much come to expect that from him). Granted, it’s written in a macho, ‘thug’ vocabulary that doesn’t exactly match the subject matter, but at its core the sentiment itself is rather sensitive and progressive. More importantly, it has a lovely melody that serves as a sublime vehicle for Usher’s legendary voice, and like most of Usher’s weaker singles, its flaws don’t really seem to matter as much when the greatest male voice of modern pop is singing it. Granted, you could argue this same idea was done better in Fetty Wap’s “Trap Queen” around the same time. Fetty certainly doesn’t even approach Usher’s vocal splendor, and his lyrics aren’t really any more sensitive or progressive than those featured on this song, but something about Fetty’s endearingly unpolished sound does seem to give him a level of sincerity and warmth that this song never quite achieves. But in any case, both songs are vastly superior to the other attempt at a love song to a stripper that year, Ne-Yo’s decisively horrible “She Knows”.

Verdict: Not completely successful, and it kind of wound up being eclipsed by “Trap Queen” at the time, but it’s still pretty and well-sung enough to get at least a partial pass.

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