Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Another RANT about music lyrics...

"What's a menage a trois?"

Now that's a question you don't expect while grilling up some black bean burgers...

But when your child forgets to have you to approve the iTunes list - THIS is what your conversations revolve around.

Needless to say, that song is GONE!

Just last week I sang Katy Perry's praises, today I ripped her song from one of the iPods in our home.

Ladies and Gentlemen, here is my new and improved LYRICS FROM THE SOAPBOX!

Rhianna's S & M (now from THAT title, you should KNOW, right?)
Enrique Iglesias TONIGHT (this version is OK, just know that the chorus in the original version does not say "tonight I'm loving you" - replace the L-word in that phrase with the F-word) Enrique? REALLY?
Cee-Lo Green's FORGET YOU (once again - this F-word ..."Forget" is not the same F-word in the original song. Yes, the original song is called F*** YOU!

How long do I spend looking at song lyrics? Hours.

How many times have I contacted the school, coaches, teachers about songs my children are hearing while in their care? Too many.

How often have I talked to my kids' friends about the awful messages today's music sends? Quite often.

My kids spirits, minds and bodies? Priceless.

Just an FYI, here are some other links to popular songs over the last year - be sure to take a look, you might be surprised what they are REALLY SAYING!

Black Eyed Peas' IMMA BE
Rhianna's RUDE BOY
Kevin Rudolf's LET IT ROCK

Now, please keep in mind...
These are songs that are played on the radio...there are songs EVEN WORSE than these that your kids can easily get on their iPods.

I have had people bash me in the comments section saying I am a crazed psychopath mom who hovers too closely to her children's business...

Here's my response...
Until the are 18 years old, their business IS MY BUSINESS! What is on their facebook, in their emails, getting pumped through iPods, notes in pockets...and so on and so on...

They are my responsibility.
Sure it would be WAY easier to say, "It's none of my business." Would save me a whole SNOT-load of time to NOT be so careful of what they are exposed to...

But they are my responsibility.
They are precious gifts entrusted to me to do my very best to raise them to be productive members of society. RESPECTED members of society.

I guarantee you this type of music is where SELF-RESPECT starts breaking down.
What goes in, comes out.
Think about it.

Would love to hear your thoughts on this matter.

Peace out, Mamas!


Karen said...

YOU GO GIRL!!!! And thanks for sharing:)

My Semblance of Sanity said...

Thanks, Mama!

Anonymous said...

You know I'm SUPER LIBERAL but even this punk rock mommy doesn't let her daughter (or son) listen to ANYTHING that objectifies women. What message would I be sending to her if these thoguhts and ideas were allowed to be incorporated into their self image. Our children are our greatest work of art, our masterpieces.

IceMama said...

Music lyrics have degraded over the years. When my kids were little I indoctrinated them with MY music: a heavy dose of jazz (no lyrics) and some wickedly awesome classic rock. I'll take an iPod full of '60s and '70s music any day over the filth that is perpetuated by these so-called artists. I was not vigilant as to what my kids were downloading, but I have lectured them on the fact that what they listen to defines them as much as what they wear: I was thrilled when my 22 year old college son called me to ask for some money so he could go to a...Bruce Springsteen tribute band concert. For the record: I'm still a live music lover. Looking forward to the upcoming Dave Matthews Band tour. And if Springsteen tours again...I'll be there.

Melanie said...

I totally agree with you, this has been a topic of discussion for my Mom friends, how much influence of society you want your children to have, which even though my children are much younger makes me reconsider what I let them do, see and listen to. It is nice to see other Moms that share my opinions.

My Semblance of Sanity said...

It is so refreshing to talk to other moms that are the ARMY for their children's purity.

There is SO much that goes on in the TEEN much I find out about between having an "insiders" look around thru friends that are currently in schools and hearing snippets from friends with older teens. It would keep you up at night if I shared it all.

Thanks for being the watchdog for your kids - you are setting a good example for other moms and hopefully it will spread!

Sheri said...

Same lyrics different decade....yes pop and specifically rap pushes boundaries but does anyone remember "Pour some sugar on me" "She Bop" or "I want your sex" from the 80s? I listened and even sang along to them. They did not influence me or change my perception of right from wrong.

The challenge is to keep communication open and talk, talk talk to our kids about these influences, whether it's music, movies, or any other type of media.

Love you cuz!

Anonymous said...

I totally disagree with you. I too listened to those songs you refered to and they had PROFOUND affect on me. I experienced sexual abuse and therefore was sexualized early. Singing those songs like "Pour Some Sugar on Me", I want you sex" and "I Feel like Makin Love" among others encouraged much promiscuity on my part from very young. These words echo in the minds of teens and can cause curiosity and drive to do things that they would not have otherwise.

My Semblance of Sanity said...

I think these last two comments make a PERFECT point...

Everyone "hears" different things when listening to music.

I was just talking to someone about the FIREWORK song by Katy Perry and she said as many times as she had listened to it, she had never even realized there was a message.

Take the same song - my 13 year old sat me down to watch it on YouTube and we both were moved to tears as we internalized the message that seemed as plain as day.

I, too, grew up in the era of Def Leppard and George Michael. I understood the premise of those songs, they brought my attention to the "sexual" side of me that was maturing. I felt sexy singing those songs - I liked that feeling.

That being said, I never acted out those feelings in a sexual way...

Here are three people that were affected by those same three songs in vastly different ways.

I think Sheri has the key - OPEN CONVERSATION is the best way to keep the lines of communication open.

Always being open to your children's questions and handling even the most shocking ones calmly will truly be a gift as they mature and grow.

Anonymous said...

IMHO - I agree with Sheri. I mean I do see how different children will get different reactions to what they hear in music, but like Sheri said, as long as you are open to talk about it then I don't see too much of a problem.

If you are a parent who censors their child's music, what do you say to them when they ask you about what they heard in school about certain songs? (I'm not trying to be rude) I understand you want to do your best for your child I just want to know what you do when you child hears about a song you banned them from hearing, from a friend in school? You can only censor so much.

My Semblance of Sanity said...

That is a good question.
I don't make them think that those lyrics going in their brains will make their souls burn -
I simply teach them that they should CHOOSE the songs they pump into their minds responsibly.
They can dance to them at school dances, etc.
Funny story, though, the busdriver chose my kids in 1st grade to be the moral compass for the music she plays on the bus.

A song comes on, she looks in the rearview mirror and they say "yay" or "nay" - sure other kids boo and hiss when they turn down a popular song but my kids are now strong enough (having been trained since 1st grade to make the RIGHT choice PUBLICLY)that it doesn't phase them.

They remain popular kids - they are GROUNDED in HOW to make good choices.

Thanks for your question!

Karen said...

So you and your blog and your "lyric rant" were a topic I brought up at my book club today...I love that some of your blog followers id themselves as liberal...I love that some relate back to their own youth and remember those racy lyrics of big hair band days (I sure remember!)....but no matter, the theme I see so persistent (and what I really love about you Michelle) is the unabashed, outright commitment of these women to be their kids champions. Whatever that looks like for you, for your family, so be it. But amazing how we all are different women, different lifestyles, different opinions...united by the one universal force...OUR CHILDREN and the ultimate job we have to raise these kids up to be adults who are equipped to deal with the world!! (Not exactly a small task, you know!) No matter if you are ok with the lyrics or not, I'm certainly not hearing anyone say "Oh well..whatever...these kids will figure it out someway or somehow on their own; no need for me here. They can handle it all by themselves" No one is blase' about it. Everyone here wants to be involved, whether it be pulling the plug on the not so nice music (my own personal tactic) or by making sure the lines are always open to talk about the not so nice stuff they hear. Kudos, to each of us....Motherhood is REALLY hard, and I love the fact that, at least the women represented here, aren't willing to do that garbage of judging each other just because someone handles her job differently. THAT'S HOW WE SURVIVE, you leaning on each other, taking into account each other's methods to the mothering madness we're a part of; So thanks to all for the awesome dialogue. I appreciate I could be a part of it! And ROCK ON!!!!

My Semblance of Sanity said...


No one has to be right or wrong!

We are loving on our kids by "working it" the way we do best.

LOVE to celebrate the differences that keep us each unique!

Thanks ladies
This was a great conversation!

Keep it going - post on your facebook or blog to invite others to chime in!

I LOVE this conversatioN!

Misty Stoltzfus said...

Amen sista! Chip and I are just now running into this and I have googled 3 or 4 songs recently (Fireworks by Katy Perry included) to find out the lyrics. I wondered how my kids even knew the songs I was googling until I found out.. My 7 year old went to a friend's house who has her own IPod touch.. songs on the bus or from a teenage babysitter we had. I for one will continue to be a nosy parent.. I don't want my kids just "singing along" when they have no clue what it is they are singing or who they are supporting! So, thanks Michelle, and I am right there with ya!!

My Semblance of Sanity said...

Thanks Misty!!