Why I Love Sex Therapy
"It's your body, we'll go hard if you want to
As hard as you want to, soft as you want to
Just let me love you, lay right here, I'll be your fantasy
Give you sex therapy, give you sex therapy."
Robin Thicke is underrated. He has made a career out of proving people wrong who say that a white man has no place in R&B. His new wave Blue Eyed Soul is some of the best in the history of the genre. A large reason why Thicke is underrated or otherwise unfairly maligned is due to the phenomenal success of Blurred Lines, featuring Pharrell and TI, and the confused reaction to that song. Those who believe that Blurred Lines is an ode to rape culture are on the wrong track altogether. It is not a song that attempts to coerce a woman into sex, it is like so much of R&B, an attempt to empower the wallflower to get what they want but are afraid to ask for. It is a celebration of living as a physical being, and not being prevented from living a full life because of fear. It is just as much a call to insecure men as it is women. Not to force anybody to do anything, but to give them the courage to get what they need. Sex Therapy shows the kind of man that Robin Thicke is in music: he prizes consent above all else. Sex Therapy is a song about pleasing a woman exactly how she wants, in a way that holds her body and her consent as holy.
Sex Therapy was produced by Paul "Hollywood Hotsauce" Dawson, Robin Thicke and Polow da Don, the latter of whom also co-produced the great and smooth single Glamorous by Fergie. The song's atmosphere is overpowering and gorgeous, with Robin Thicke's immaculate falsetto setting the scene for a romantic affair. Sex Therapy is in many ways a good definition of R&B and its ability to make the physical sacrosanct. It is as much a call to sensual arms as was Marvin Gaye's classic Let's Get It On, but it is also informed by a need to only seduce those who want to be seduced. Consent is King. "If you want to..." is repeated throughout the song, illustrating that this is not in any way imposed on another. "I'll be your fantasy..." I'll do whatever you want. I'm here to please you.
I think the misunderstanding of Blurred Lines, in order to fit a narrative that certain people want to push at the expense of the facts, has created a situation where nothing by Robin Thicke can be appreciated. This is a great shame and displays a profound ignorance of not only Thicke but the genre at large. Sex Therapy is a feminist sex song, as well as reflecting the beautiful heart in every person when they find someone they love. Worried you can't dance? Don't worry. Worried about your physical insecurities? Don't worry. This song can fix all that. It's a hand offered to let you become the person you want to be. Don't sit home, sad and lonely at the fact that nobody wants to sleep with you. Once you understand that love is not a scary thing, and that embracing your physical nature leads to happiness, you can get past all of your bullshit and be the person you always knew you could be.
Robin Thicke has one of the greatest voices in music today, and nowhere is it better heard than on Sex Therapy. That way he rises above and expresses a deep longing to be with the one he loves... pure magic. I have always had a deep love for falsetto, starting with The Beach Boys, and there is something particularly pleasing about Robin Thicke's voice here. Falsetto is something that displays a man's heart in a way that is unguarded and without fear. There was a great documentary on falsetto on BBC Four some years back, and The Stylistics' lead singer, Russell Thompkins Jr stated that to get women in your life, sing a great falsetto. And he did. "Girl, it's your body we can do whatever you like. Girl, it's your body we can do whatever you like." This is a song that is to be played in the bedroom. A lot of babies have been made to this song, and there are a lot more on the way.
Sex Therapy is my favourite song by Robin Thicke and one of the best R&B songs of the last decade. If you have been put off Robin Thicke by all the silly Blurred Lines chatter, and odious thumb sucking opinion pieces, please give this a go. Have a watch of the video (which is not nearly as embarrassing as Blurred Lines) and understand that this is the true Robin Thicke: someone who just wants to please the women in his life. His music is not about forcing anybody to do anything. It's about how when we get together in the dark, and express our love for one another, we can come close to the holy. Robin Thicke is one of the best R&B singers of the last decade, and should be respected for that. Sex Therapy is perhaps his greatest song, so listen to it already!