The Top 5 Most Played Inappropriate Songs For Children

By on April 13, 2009

Yes, I am indeed back from a one-month voluntarily involuntary hiatus, only because a concept just popped into my head about 15 minutes ago.

Remember back in your way younger days, when you used to go to school events, namely Skate Night (if you went to Shiloh Elementary like I did, you went to Skate Night, no questions asked), or maybe the Last Day of School Picnic, or whatever else you ended up doing.  You probably remember good and well the songs that came on during these events, and the fact that you probably knew all the words to at least one of them.  You turn around 10+ years later, only to realize that the song you knew by heart was in no way intended for children.  You may also begin to wonder how, with all the extra-measures people go through to keep children innocent, or how quickly some parents nowadays jump down the media’s throat, how no one’s head was called for during all that.

Today, we’re going to take a look at those songs that really made you stop in reflection and go, WOAH, no way.

5. Barry White – Practice What You Preach

This one is kind of a stretch, I know, but if you were anywhere near my childhood, this song was played a LOT.  It’s not just the fact that Barry himself is just so catchy, with that super deep and raspy voice, it’s the fact that you were more than likely that 5, 6, 7, 8, whatever year-old that thought it was cool to sing this song.   I remember the day I realized what it was that I was singing when I was little.

I’ve had my share of lovers
Some say I’m damn good
And if you think you can turn me out
Baby, I wish that you would

‘Cause you keep tellin’ me this and tellin’ me that
You say once I’m with you, I’ll never go back
You say there’s a lesson that you wanna teach
Well, here I am, baby, practice what you preach”

There you go, right there.  That’s all you need to see if you’ve never heard the song before, as a matter of fact, that still doesn’t do it justice.  Go to youtube, now, and search for that song.  Listen to the shear sexiness of it, and tell me that’s not inappropriate for a child to sing.

4. Chumbawamba – Tubthumpin

Oh man, good old Chumbawamba, this song is actually not a terrible terrible offender, as the content of what’s inappropriate for a young child is pretty well hidden.  That’s pretty hard to do, especially when half of your chorus involves you stating that you’re [wasting] the night away for lack of a better term.  The song is basically about wasting away the night in bottles of liquor, not bad, but still not appropriate for a child.  They really got away with the fact that the lyrics were hard to decipher, especially at a young age.

3. Village People – YMCA

Now here’s where it starts to get REAL interesting.  It’s not that the song has homosexual undertones all over it, it’s the fact that it was so popular.  The song had a double meaning, but all of us kids were all over the dance.  Who didn’t stick their arms in the air to form Y-M-C-A whenever the chorus came around?  Seriously?  If you claim you never did, then I shall shake your hand, because you have the willpower of an ancient.  Now don’t take that the wrong way, I’m not adding this song because they’re gay, I’m adding the song because it has some seriously questionable content for a young child, especially when they’ve gotten said young child to dance to the song whenever possible.

2. Lou Bega – Mumbo #5

This song being terrible automatically causes it to make the list.  Somehow convincing Disney to let you make a Disney version of a song about male permiscuity, well, that’s quite a feat in itself.  Yes, that indeed is what makes Lou Bega’s hit such a terrible offender, the fact that all the kids were singing a hit song about having five different women at their every whim.  Good job Lou, you pimped the kids to pimp the kids, how does that make you feel?

1. NEXT – Too Close

You may not remember this song to well, here, let me remind you:

“baby when we’re grinding
I get so excited
Ooh, how I like it
I try but I can’t fight it
Oh, you’re dancing real close
Cause it’s real, real slow
(you know what youre doing, dont you)
Youre making it hard for me”


Read that again.

Pause again.

Read that last line.

Exactly.  I don’t know how else to tell you this song is just flat out inappropriate for a child.  Oh but it’s my song though, don’t get me wrong, this was THE JAM, but our young minds had no idea what R.L. and the guys were talking about with this song.  My friend (shoutsout to ‘Duce’ Atkins) had to bring this up to me for me to remember that I should have not been singing this at 8 years old, or however old I was.


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  • taylor

    What about the music now? At least when we were kids, artists did try to be a little more discreet but now everything is way too explicit. At a christmas party at an elementary school I tutor at, the kids turned on the radio and started singing and dancing to songs that were honestly filthy and made me uncomfortable but their parents didn't say anything.

  • Al Hayfever

    Another great example: "Hey Sandy" by Polaris, the theme song to 'The Adventures of Pete & Pete' on freakin' Nickelodeon, was about the Kent State shootings! (Sandy was one of the students shot.) Only reason they pulled it off was that the singer mumbled the only really obvious line in the song (in parentheses below):

    Hey, smilin' strange,
    You're looking happily deranged,
    (Can you settle to shoot me?)
    Or have you picked your target yet?

    Hey Sandy, don't you talk back, hey Sandy.

    Four feet away,
    End of speech, it's the end of the day,
    We was only funnin',
    But guiltily I thought you had it comin' (!)

    Hey Sandy, don't you talk back, hey Sandy.

  • Ryan McLaughlin

    Oh I don't disagree with you at all Taylor. This was more of a nostalgia moment for me, it wasn't meant to be any kind of activist "ban this music" type article. It was more of, oh "wait, no way, I shouldn't have been hearing that."
    The point is most songs aren't made for children, but they're catchy and for some reason no one picks up on it. The fact that "Lollipop", "Take Me Out", "Toxic" and the like have made Kids Bop albums are concerns in itself.

    And Al I never noticed that.

  • Alyssa Mitchell

    Or what about Bow Wow Wow's I Want Candy or Wham's Wake Me Up that's been covered by half of the bubblegum brigade.

  • anon

    Yes but what you rarely saw or heard twenty years ago was a bunch of little kids shaking their hips and singing “Im sexy and I know it” but this is commonplace these days. Yes they may not exactly understand at the age of 4 or 5 but by the age of 10 they have a pretty good idea. And then what do they do at 14 – how do you rebel when even the most explicit music is just for little kids?

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