Many of you guys will say that Avril Lavigne went through something of a dark age at some point in time. The dark age is usually said to be the why The Best Damn Thing and Goodbye Lullaby's delays lost her fans. To me, Under My Skin is where Avril Lavigne went downhill as Under My Skin is more suited with The Best Damn Thing and Goodbye Lullaby than pairing with Let Go which all your fans prefer for me.
It's not that people prefer that album along with Let Go over The Best Damn Thing, Goodbye Lullaby or her fifth album, but to me, RCA butchered Arista's Under My Skin causing her 2004 singles like My Happy Ending underperformed at the Billboard charts in 2004. The marketing for Under My Skin and its singles is terrible. It was smart enough that Under My Skin is her first number 1 album selling 10 million copies worldwide. But RCA killed Under My Skin era. Yeah, blame RCA. So Under My Skin is where Avril Lavigne started to pop on her rock music in 2004 for me. Stupid RCA for killing Under My Skin in 2004. Yeah, RCA killed Arista's Under My Skin. Then in 2007 The Best Damn Thing lost her fans and bash her most successful song, Girlfriend and Goodbye Lullaby has caused delays and then the album sold poorly in 2011.
Now, I gotta tell you about why Under My Skin and RCA has caused Avril Lavigne's career to have problems in 2004. But before I talk about the story of Avril Lavigne's dark age from 2004-2011, I'll talk about a few things. Yes, fans loved Under my Skin and yes, older fans prefer Let Go and Under My Skin over The Best Damn Thing, Goodbye Lullaby and her fifth album from 2013.
OK, let's talk about the story of Avril Lavigne's problems towards RCA between 2004 and 2011. Here we go.
It's been 10 years ago when Avril Lavigne go back to Arista and begin making Under My Skin in 2003 which is a year after Let Go released in 2002. But after Arista finished making Under My Skin in 2004, RCA came in and distribute Under My Skin. UGH!
As you may know that many people said that Avril Lavigne's dark age began in 2007 and forget Avril Lavigne's music from 2007-2013. But in my opinion, well… Was the post-2002 era, namely an era that contained most of her songs produced after Let Go and before she moved over to Epic Records in 2013.
That's the post-2002/pre-2013 era… This is when RCA were given more control over Avril Lavigne, and as a result, her outputs not named Girlfriend began showing major weaknesses and problems. By this time, RCA morphed Avril Lavigne into a soulless singer, steering her away from the "popular Canadian artist" status after Arista finish Under My Skin and RCA distributes it. This 2004-2011 era is where Avril Lavigne went downhill when RCA starts milking her music career between 2004 and 2011 by the time RCA manufactured Arista's Under My Skin in 2004.
So after her bratty songs like I'm With You and Losing Grip wore thin, during the development of Under My Skin which was released in 2004, her plan was to now tackle new kinds of songs like her mature rock songs. Always good, right? Right? Well, unfortunately, right before Under My Skin released in 2004, Avril Lavigne were merely allowed to experiment. She had to get her ideas, like making her future collab songs featuring another artist, past RCA in order to get them to the boss and most of the time, her best ideas were supplanted by inferior ones. RCA having too much power over Avril Lavigne is a nightmare to begin with, RCA who only saw her ruling over her powerhouse that is Avril Lavigne is an even bigger nightmare.
Thus, we got her 3 post 2002 albums which includes Under My Skin, her second album released in 2004, 2007's The Best Damn Thing and her 2011 flop, Goodbye Lullaby. As for songs, we have Don't Tell Me, My Happy Ending, Nobody's Home, He Wasn't, When You're Gone, Hot, The Best Damn Thing, What The Hell, Smile, and Wish You Were Here. Girlfriend nearly dodged the bullet, but it was the most successful Avril Lavigne song of all time selling more then 3 million copies and peaked at number 1 at Billboard Hot 100 chart. That's because Girlfriend marketed correctly. Other post 2002 songs like My Happy Ending doesn't. So Girlfriend doesn't count. Alice was made by Disney instead of RCA. So no Alice here. Her three albums are what can't be what Avril Lavigne want to be, because her ideas were outweighed by what RCA wanted. Her second album, Under My Skin, was made by Arista back in 2004, but RCA and fans skipped the singles and go straight to the album killed Under My Skin singles like the number 1 2004 single, My Happy Ending. She suppose to move away from bratty and makes her 2004 mature outputs, but her mature songs end up being quick cash ins thanks to RCA and the results are bland, uncreative and doesn't feel like Avril songs like Nobody's Home. The only bratty song is He Wasn't and He Wasn't's music video didn't release in the US in 2005. I know Under My Skin was a success and fans loved it. But RCA killed Under My Skin and its singles did horribly in 2004.
Worse, no Grammy nominations for Under My Skin making that sophomore album even far weaker than other sophomore albums like Fearless as well as her far superior Let Go album. If Arista is still around, then that record label distributing her post 2002 albums including its own Under My Skin. But still, Under My Skin was a success making it her first number 1 album and sold 3 million copies in the US and 10 million copies worldwide which is good for an Avril Lavigne album. But the way Under My Skin was marketed doesn't marketed correctly.
Yeah, 2004 is such a weak year for Avril. Especially having her second album to be a success.
The Best Damn Thing, much like Under My Skin, is also her number 1 album and yet it sold less copies and lose fans in 2007. Then in 2011, Goodbye Lullaby sold poorly thanks to RCA. 2011 is an awful date for her fourth album. 2010 is a much better date. That's why Goodbye Lullaby delayed because delaying lost her popularity alot more than her fifth album did. Goodbye Lullaby's delayed caused music listeners to move away from Avril Lavigne and her songs like Alice and stick with other female artists like Britney Spears, Rihanna, Kelly Clarkson, Taylor Swift, Lady, Gaga, Carrie Underwood, Pink, Beyonce, Katy Perry and Kesha. That's because other long running artists like Britney Spears and Alicia Keys and this generation's artist like Demi Lovato and Selena Gomez has good marketing department and their outputs were successes. Avril Lavigne doesn't. So therefore, 2011, RCA, poor promotions and delays killed Goodbye Lullaby. If Goodbye Lullaby released in 2010 instead of 2011, then Goodbye Lullaby is a huge success. That's why 2011 music hates 2011 Avril Lavigne like Wish You Were Here.
Of course, the biggest stab in the heart is the fact that this is one of the very reasons why Avril Lavigne songs was shown the door, in the very country where it blossomed from the very studio who made it blossom the way it did. I really wish that LA Ried and all the people running Epic Records right now would get it through their heads that Avril Lavigne songs produced by RCA like Smile and terrible management were the reasons why Avril Lavigne songs after 2002 sunk at the charts, not the medium or Avril Lavigne's music career.
Now, I don't know if RCA engaged in a big conspiracy to kill Avril Lavigne by making her 2004-2011 outputs poor, marketing them badly and having them fail, but the way Avril Lavigne was beaten to a pulp during this era makes for a painful part of her career. Thank goodness the madness stopped (I think a lot of people take what LA Ried have done for Avril's career for granted. Bye bye, RCA.), but her 2013 outputs like Rock N Roll remains something of a casualty of her post RCA era thanks to Epic for killed her 2013 career.
I wish the business people realized for one minute that RCA's mismanagement of the company and the decision to swamp Avril Lavigne with ignorant executives hurt her 2004-2011 songs. I wish they'd realize that poor marketing hurt her music career after 2002 like Here's To Never Growing Up. I really wish they would want to bring Avril Lavigne back… They really do! But that really is not enough… Avril Lavigne should never be a thing of the past… Never…
RCA should be a thing of the past for her because RCA can't stand her. Avril Lavigne songs are now gone thanks to RCA and Epic Records for ruining her career since 2004, it's time for them to come back. Even making her mature songs doesn't help her career to get better.
So what she needs is to stop making bratty songs. It's time for music marketing to give Avril Lavigne her own identity and she has to make her future mature songs and bring back number 1 chart peaks on her future songs - in turn, she will entice many fans, adults and other people to hear her songs in droves. She mas to make her first rock music album and make it a big success. That's why Epic Records has to hire much better staff like Max Martin and promote her Epic Records songs correctly in the US unlike her fifth album's awful promotion and its poor singles selections. Bring back number 1 Billboard peaks for her songs and albums too. Advertise that Avril Lavigne album and that album will her her most successful album since Let Go. It can even outsell her other post 2002 albums like Under My Skin too. Overall, Avril Lavigne must get her music big again by allowing her to make her future rock music with more mature efforts. Avril Lavigne has to take risks each time her new music are in the works during her career and her new music has to be successful and become her new number 1 hits just like her Let Go era's singles like I'm With You and Girlfriend from 2007.
Bottom line, the RCA era was a weak era for Avril Lavigne, un-Avril Lavigne in many ways. That includes Under My Skin, a fan-favorite album from 2004 that fans loved the most along with Let Go. Avril Lavigne should never pander to the music public that doesn't care about Avril Lavigne nowadays, never. Avril Lavigne songs should never be for music listeners who never heard of Avril Lavigne first and foremost. Worse, in addition to the fact that Avril Lavigne's materials after the Let Go era could've been good, it helped hurt Avril Lavigne's career or her music. Avril Lavigne's music that Avril Lavigne worked so hard to bolster… The RCA era provides an excellent lesson: Executive meddling should be kept at a minimum in music, or better yet… It should be banished from mainstream music in its entirety. Never let people who don't give nothing about Avril Lavigne be the heads of record labels (her record label happens to be Sony Music Entertainment, the same label who owns Arista, RCA and Epic). That goes for other artists, too like Taylor Swift!