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Very concerned over Music on radio, pop culture

post #1 of 74
Thread Starter 

I am the mother of 3 boys- my 10 yo listens to and loves all the pop music. there is some REALLY disturbing stuff out there- all about getting drunk and drinking until your vision is blurred/ your words are slurred-

about women fighting other women and yelling obscenities at other women-

the Rihanna/ Eminim song- Love the way you lie- she is abused and LOVES the way it hurts and he tells her if she leaves him again- he will tie her to the bed and watch the house burn down-

Now Rihanna has a song entitled S&M where she talks about sex in the air and the smell of it and that she gets excited by whips and chains- it has been banned in other countries but it is playing on the radio here every five minutes- I honestly don't know what to do---the garbage they are putting out there for our children to buy and listen to-

I DO talk to DS about what the music says and why i can't stand it, but he doesn't care- he knows all the words and hears it with his friends etc anyway---

Are we to just give up trying to protect our kids because the garbage is everywhere?


post #2 of 74

I think the meaning of the words may be  going over his head...i loved grease movie when i was a kid and had the soundtrack on tape. I remeber watching the movie with my  daughter when she was about  10 for the first time in years  and finally realsing what it was all about and thoses songs i had learnt at a young age were about sex..lol


If you cant stp him from hearing the songs  just explain you dont approval of some of the messages in them and let it go, i don think these songs will do any harm, and imo the more you try to say they are 'bad' songs the more your kids will try to listen to them to try and figure out what you mean.


post #3 of 74

Isn't this an age-old issue? Our grandparents didn't like what our parents listened to, our parents didn't like what we listened to, and now we don't like what our kids listen to.


I found that it was helpful to find out what it is about the songs that they like - I can almost guarantee that the lyrics don't figure high on the list.

post #4 of 74

Elvis used to be considered obscene. And forget the Beatles. Or the Rolling Stones. Or Poison. Scandalous! lol. 


I agree, it's just.... one of those things. It doesn't mean I LIKE it. We don't listen to the radio in our house(except NPR). The kind of music my DH and I like aren't on the radio. Our DS1's favorite band is Depeche Mode. Are you familiar with the lyrics? No, they don't talk about beating anyone, but they are very sexually charged. But he has no idea. He just likes how it sounds. And frankly, I don't think sex in and of itself is bad, and it's not something that I want to hide from my kids anyway. 


I do take some issue, though, with music that degrades women in the sense of beating them or calling them names that make them possessions. I don't mind female musicians expressing their own sexuality. My favorite band has some really violent lyrics, but they sing mostly in Spanish(entirely coincidental, I don't speak Spanish, nor do I specifically like Spanish music, this is industrial). 


I think it's just..... one of those things.....

post #5 of 74

By age 10, it's hard to guide what they get exposed to, I think a better strategy then is to talk about healthy relationships and be a good model for him. Actually talk about why degrading one another is a bad thing and how it's really about being a team and building one another up. Also teach your own view of alcohol, whether it's ok done responsibly at an appropriate age, or always a bad move, or whatever, and why.

post #6 of 74

My daughter is only five so take this for what it's worth (I saw this from the main page and it's a discussion I was just having yesterday, so it caught my attention).  She LOVES music.  She loves loud fast pop music, she likes catchy lyrics.  I no longer listen to popular radio with her in the car because while I am not about to start telling radio stations they can't play that (totally stupid) S&M song, I don't want my daughter hearing it.  It's my job to teach her our values as a family and our values as a family say that sex is a private thing between adults, not something we use to get attention or for shock value.  I have gone out of my way to find music for her that she can listen to.  It's not easy but we've found some things.  Thank goodness for the iPod, we can just pick and choose.  For instance, she LOVES Born This Way, Firework, and F*ing Perfect (edited version) but the rest of those CD probably wouldn't be ok for her.


I can't help what she hears from other kids or when she's not with me, but I try very hard to explain to her why certain songs aren't appropriate for her - not because they're about some secret thing she can't know about, but because they say horrible things about women, promote violence, etc.

post #7 of 74
Thread Starter 

I have certainly thought about how my parents disapproved of certain music and their parents disapproved of certain music but it seems like the music industry has taken it as far as it could go-- what could be worse than the images in some of the songs- and my 10 yo or any child less than say 15 or 16 should not be listening to songs that want you to pound alcohol until you are incoherent or beat women, and she likes it--- please! maybe parents didn't like Elvis shaking his hips- but this stuff in songs today is so gross----these people need serious psychothereapy--- and it's all over the radio- i wish i could say "We don't listen to the radio" or we only listen to NPR. My boy is a force to be reckoned with and i am trying very hard to keep connected to him- to outlaw the radio would be terrible for our relationship-- and impossible---

And whatever about women expressing their sexuallity- let them do it somewhere else than on the pop radio station that families listen to--- S&M-- whips and chains?? It's already been banned in many countries....no thanks- but it's out there and now I have to deal with it- I don't know what the next generation of music could contain if it is going to push the envelope more than this---

and yes, he likes the beat of the music but he knows EVERY single word of the songs-- every single one-

Isn't there a parent protest group i can join? Do you know of any?

post #8 of 74





My son is in middle school and all the kids are listening to this kind of pop music and stuff that is even more sexual (like some of the rap). To forbid him from listening to it would only cause friction in our relationship and cause him to feel ostracized. What we do however is expose him to other types of music as well, all kinds, from classical to jazz to various ethic or “world’ music to classical and alternative rock. He also likes a lot of it and has come to the conclusion on his own that a lot of the pop music is not very artistic.

And yep, rock IS very sexual too!  In the 50s Elvis was banned from dancing on TV and in general rock and roll was considered to cause deviant behaviour in youths



Edited by raksmama - 4/3/11 at 11:48am
post #9 of 74
Thread Starter 

But is anyone seeing how this is os different from hip thrusts and gyrating??

This is messed up - epople hurting each other and liking it- and drinking until you are wasted-- this is different--- what could be worse than some of these images... how could it get worse?

post #10 of 74

Remember Run for your Life by the Beatles?  Hey Joe by Jimi Hendrix?  Both songs about men killing girlfriends because they went with other men.  Folsom Prison Blues by Johnny Cash?  He shot a man in Reno "just to watch him die".  Ever hear some of the 2LIve Crew's music?  There are tons of other examples.  This type of music has always been around, maybe you just notice it now because you have a child to protect. 


post #11 of 74

What enkmon said (as well as some other posters too).


I also want to add, as a musician it scares me to hear about wanting to get involved with actively protesting a song or type of music just because you are offended with it. It is not up to you to police what people listen to, or what they can access. Whether you like it or not, those performers have every right to write, record, and distribute that music.

post #12 of 74
I think trying to protest what artists are putting out is as disturbing as some of the music that you have a problem with. Obviously, you have the right to do it. However, you're the parent in your house and if you don't like what your child is listening to, you can choose to ban it from your house. That wouldn't be my approach, because I think that would shut down communication on some of these issues. For example, while I don't think the Rhianna/Eminem you're talking about is actually advocating abuse within a relationship, I think it's a fairly accurate representation of the cycle of abuse/love/abuse/obsession/love/abuse etc etc that does exist in some relationships - and if my 10 yo son was listening to that, it would serve as a good starting point to talk to him about those issues. And S&M? Well, I guess my gen's equivalent would be Depeche Mode's "Master and Servant" - and I wasn't much older than 10 the first time I heard it. I still love that song, and I don't think it's messed me up *too" much.
post #13 of 74
Originally Posted by Karalina View Post

But is anyone seeing how this is os different from hip thrusts and gyrating??

This is messed up - epople hurting each other and liking it- and drinking until you are wasted-- this is different--- what could be worse than some of these images... how could it get worse?

I was a metalhead in the 80s...graduated from high school 25 years ago this June. And, I listened to music about people hurting each other. I listened to lots of music about people gettings wasted. Check out lyrics from Judas Priest - "Eat me Alive" comes to mind. That song came out in 1984. Motley Crue were huge back then, and pretty much all their songs were about violence, sex and/or partying. Look at stuff from W.A.S.P. (at least one song title that I can't type on MDC). Heck - check out 22 Acacia Avenue, by Iron Maiden (my favourite band of all time, and the song does operate on two levels, imo) - it's pretty raw.


I heard people in 1983 saying "they can't go any farther than this - they've pushed it to the absolute limit". That's almost 30 years ago. Back in 1967, my mom was genuinely shocked to hear The Doors singing "Light my Fire" on the radio. She's pretty open minded, but she was concerned about her kids hearing stuff like that. My grandmother was truly horrified by The Beatles (although I suspect that had more to do with their image than their content...grandma was all about image).


I haven't heard S&M. I have no interest in hearing it, to be honest. I'm quite sure I wouldn't like it at all. But, it's not new, yk? Rock, pop, hip-hop, etc. have been pushing the boundaries for a long, long time...and as boundaries get pushed back, they have to go farther to push them.

post #14 of 74

I think being overly-concerned is giving the music and lyrics too much power.  Our kids can think for themselves.  They aren't going to believe domestic violence is okay just because they hear about it from a song on the radio;  if they live it and see it condoned, well, that's a different story.  


I spent most of my teen years listening to and loving 2pac.  I promise I am not a gangster as a result. 

post #15 of 74



I think it would be easier  if you could try to pinpoint exactly what it is you are afraid of happening because of your sons exposure to music with lyrics you disapprove of. Do you think he will internalize it?  Are you worried that he will harm himself or others?  Are you afraid he will make bad relationship choices?   That he will get involved with someone sexually before he is mature enough to handle the emotional impact?


Is your son easily influenced by others? Does he have trouble with boundaries?  Does he allow others to take advantage of him even when he disagrees?


If you answered no, try to feel a little better because the music won't make him do anything,  at worst it might normalize a cultural viewpoint you disagree with. 


When I was a child my mom took me to the Opera. Trust me it's chock full of tragic awful messages of violence and loving someone despite abuse, murder, deception etc.  These topics have been the subject of popular culture for centuries. Or how about classic Shakespearean plays?  They can get very crude.  I think others in this thread are pointing this out to you so that you can look at the situation more objectively.

post #16 of 74

Originally Posted by Storm Bride View Post


Back in 1967, my mom was genuinely shocked to hear The Doors singing "Light my Fire" on the radio. She's pretty open minded, but she was concerned about her kids hearing stuff like that. My grandmother was truly horrified by The Beatles (although I suspect that had more to do with their image than their content...grandma was all about image).

Exactly my point. That same Mom of mine (now 80)? Has actively asked my son to cut her some CDs with music he likes so she can listen to it. He as, though the years, listened to almost any genre you could think of. Some of it pretty raw and horrific. She listens to it all, and then tells him what she likes and what she doesn't. (Same mother who took issue with my listening to John Denver and Shawn Cassidy....) She prints out the lyrics, follows along, etc. And they have some really interesting discussions about it all. (So do we, but it's different.) And... it spurred him to listen to some of what she likes. Now? He's studying composition, with a focus on modern atonal classical music. Who knows where things lead...

post #17 of 74

Welcome to the Jungle - Guns n' Roses.

post #18 of 74

I was just discussing the issue of music/lyrics with DH the other day.  There are some songs that the boys and I like, and I couldn't decide if it was better to get a clean version of a song, or just not get the song.  For example, the Cee Lo song.  They did a clean version of it.  A Glee version of it.  And, then the original.  The original has the F-word.


Now, I also have 3 boys.  2 of them are old enough to be more interested in the music I listen to, including my 11 1/2 year old.  The 3rd is a toddler ..... so, he would be happy with most anything.


But, the issues for me aren't necessarily the words, in a way that I think they are sitting there thinking about all the lyrics and the implications.  At this point, my boys are looking for a way to get away with, and giggle about, swearing.  


So, while I have my own thoughts about being authentic and listening to an original version, as opposed to an altered version of anything, I also am not interested in providing my boys with a way to run around using profanity that I prohibit, and then giggling all darn day about it.  


Also, and I will date myself, I have more issues these days with videos.  For me, having grown up with the beginnings of MTV, and seeing the evolution of videos, I think the visuals, at least to my boys, are worse.  It is true we had things from a lot of bands that had suggestive lyrics, gyrating big hair men and women, and some stuff that made our parents think "OMG!".... but, I think that these days if a group could put their music to something that would get classified as porn, they would.  There is very little left to the imagination.  And, I am not a prude when it comes to nudity or sex, but I think that there is nothing creative about having women wearing as little as they can possibly get away with, engaged in what basically is grinding and mimicking sexual activity.


All that said, I have no qualms in being the one that loads my kids' ipods, which I just redid their playlists and reloaded new stuff this weekend.  I also don't let them have carte blanch access to the computer, internet, and especially youtube.  They have rules and restrictions on a whole host of things, including various media, that I know their friends don't.  And I am fine with that.  Because, we aren't supposed to give up on trying to protect our kids from "garbage" - especially in our own home.


post #19 of 74

You know, I think we, as adults, tend to overestimate our kids abilities to get below the surface of the media they are exposed to.  When I was a kid, I LOVED The Goonies.  Loved it.  Then, I hadn't seen it through most of my teen years and even into my early 20s.  The first time my oldest saw it she was I think 7 or 8, I was excited to watch it with her, for me it was one of those classic type movies that you share with your kids.  I was 25 or 26, so it had been at least a decade or more since I had seen it.  OMG I was SHOCKED at how "scarey" I thought it was for kids.  I was really afraid it was going to freak her out, with the hand in the blender, the dead pirate skeletons with daggers in their eyes etc.  But as I thought about it...none of that phased me when I was a kid.  I mean I saw it, but it wasn't something I interalized or anything.


Dirty Dancing...ah, Dirty Dancing.  It was like 20 years before I ever realized that they were talking about an abortion.  And the dancing...when I was a kid it was just dancing.  When I watched it as an adult...it was DIRTY dancing lol



post #20 of 74
Ah yes, Dirty Dancing. That movie came out when I was 10, I think. I watched that thing over and over again. lol.gif
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