"The ________ singer"

This is something that's bugged me for years, and was brought to my attention again yesterday by my friend Hilton Mashonga. There's a formulaic tendancy by some print journalists to refer to an artist/singer/band by their songs.

They'll start the article by using their name, but in the next sentence will devolve into a bizarre sentence structure which references a song.  Allow me to demonstrate:


The angry ‘cease and desist’ letter demands that the Thriller singer’s former doctor stop giving interviews to media, or face legal action - Daily Mail, 28 November 2013

The former Disney star was spotted with Orlando Bloom and the Baby singer's best friend Alfredo Flores at Los Angeles International Airport on 20 October - International Business Times, 22 October 2014

The “Wrecking Ball” singer has been dating Patrick since early November - New York Daily News, 20 December 2014


Three examples there which I got simply by googling the names of songs by Michael Jackson, Justin Bieber, and Miley Cyrus.

What's my gripe here?


No-one actually talks like that.