Rock City “When I Grow Up (Britney Spears/ Pussycat Dolls Demo)”

“Coincidentally” leaked just as interest in Britney Spears The Pop Artist (and not, The Tabloid Disaster) is on the rise again, the release of this bizarre demo version of “When I Grow Up” brings with it the reveal that prior to being a ditched Nicole Scherzinger solo piece-turned-2008 Top Ten hit for the Pussycat Dolls, the song actually began as a pitch for the “Hold It Against Me” singer.

Performed by songwriters/ Caribbean R&B duo Rock City, and boasting wildly different verses than the official release, this early take on the tune is filled with hilariously WTF meta- lyricism pitting Spears against hurtful critic-bullies calling her out for looking “like Debbie Gibson” and trying to “dance like Michael Jackson” mixed with a little not-quite-“It’s Britney Bitch”-level finger snap sass: “My name is Britney/ And I don’t care what you say/ Cause see every time I turn around/ They screaming my name”.

What’s interesting is that, while on one hand it completely makes sense why Britney and her handlers would’ve instantly passed on this, as the song goes on, with its “Once upon a time I was nameless/ But now they know what my name is” ideas and references to Brit’s early teenage years as just another girl with superstar dreams clutching her hairbrush-microphone in the mirror (“I would dress up like Madonna/ Would even try singing like Cyndi Lauper…”), the more you kind of wish the former Mrs. Federline would’ve actually taken it on.

Think about it…it would have been kinda awesome…in an awesomely bad awesome kinda way.

DL: “When I Grow Up (Demo Version)” (alt)