Thursday, March 17, 2011

Mommy, what are they saying

Love the Way You Lie- Eminem ft. Rihanna

There is usually a lot of dancing in our kitchen, especially on breakfast for dinner night. I suspect the kids are grooving with anticipation for the maple syrup induced sugar rush and lack of green vegetables. My excitement is getting to cook with Bill. He makes one tasty omelet while serving up some of his latest voice impressions. It's all good.

So, the hits from the 90's and latest in Indie Rock are exchanged for dance and rap music. Recent staples for our dancing nights are Taio Cruz's "Dynamite" and Sean Kingston's "Fire Burning." These used to be "How Far We've Come" by Matchbox 20 and "Stayin' Alive" by the Bee Gees.  All enjoyable songs, but after repeated listening I am thankful for evolving tastes. My six year old LOVES Eminem's Lose Yourself, so that usually is played along with Eminem's other radio releases.

As I am setting the table, my youngest sits down just as "Love the Way You Lie" comes up. He and I both love Rihanna's chorus. He calls it the Lie song, and breaks into his rapper tough face when it cuts to Eminem. It's all good...until.

"Mommy, what are they saying?"

Sound of needle scratching record and the room getting quiet. Yikes! Parenting moment.

While I enjoy the song, we try to address explicit lyrics by getting radio edits. Problem solved, right? No. The content matters too. I don't want my son thinking putting his fist through the drywall is a healthy way to resolve conflict. So, I sat down next to him and tried to explain to my six year old, who wants to live in an igloo made out of a towel when he grows up, about the complexity of relationships. He had more questions. How my explanations and answers on domestic violence mixed into his brain with the Super Mario Brothers images and thoughts on igloos, I will never know. There are no guarantees. My hope is he emulates his dad in his relationships. No holes in the drywall, but I do expect him to look me in the eyeball.

I wasn't censored as a kid. Music was an area of my life I felt free to discover and explore without restriction. Over-parenting music choice is something I try not to do, even though the first 2 bars of "YMCA" instantly give me a headache.  Music is an exploration of sound and emotion but our connections to each other is what shapes us.

After the questions, I was back at the pancakes. Bill was starting the omlets. My son was doing his ninja dance moves. It was all good.

Warning: Explicit Lyrics in Attached Video


rmlharris said...

I thought the song was cool--I think I've seen it done on TV-- Academy Awards? Has a cool, haunting melody-plus awesome wrapper lyrics. But then I realize it is about domestic violence--and I feel bad...having witnessed some in my's a bad feeling...disturbing...

brandy said...

I was thinking about this blog the other day when I heard Rihanna's new song. I don't know the title, but the chorus has "sticks and stones may break my bones, but chains and whips excite me." A whole song about S&M. I wouldn't want to explain that one :)