Greetings to all the Twisted Mix Tapers out there!
This week Jen’s giving us another dealer’s choice! So we get to choose our theme.
Do check out the randomness that ensues from all this FREEDOM!
It also resulted in me mapping out three DIFFERENT possibilities. One that was, like, really deep and meaningful; one that I thought might be funny, but in a poignant kind of way; and then one that would be good for me from a “blogging is a like a diary of my memories” point of view.
Just to wind up the preamble here, I went with the third. Mostly because I couldn’t land on what my DEEP POINT actually was for my first idea (so maybe I’ll save that for a later dealer’s choice) and I was short a really good song for my second.
So what’s up today? Today I let my daughters’ DJ for you! That’s right. If you ever happened to attend one of their Teddy Bear Picnics or Dolly Tea Parties, THIS is likely what you’d get for music. But trust me. This isn’t your grandma’s tea party. Like an all night Sandra Boynton bender, the Hippos WILL go berserk.
Like this (but, although I have much love for the fab four, I picture it more to Black Eyed Peas than Beatles. Note to self: get You Tube Video Making Skills!):
So without further ado – here’s their playlist. Just for you!
Red Solo Cup – Toby Keith
So yeah. My husband fell in love with this song about three years ago and played it ad infinitum for a bit and still yanks it out anytime there’s company. As a result, my 4-year-old has been able to sing along to the refrain for well over a year now. In case you think I’m proud of this fact, not so much. But it’s made her the hit of TWO Canada Day parties. So, in Red Solo Cup half full land? Yay kid-friendly inclusion! For what it’s worth, she’s never seen the video. And now that you’ve seen it, don’t you think that should win me a few parental points? But in case I then lose them for showing it, maybe we can just break even, mkay?
Baby Beluga – Raffi
This one is currently my 18-month-old’s favourite book. I must say, that I ADORE that there’s a book for this song. I TOTALLY saw Raffi in concert as a child and so when I found this book three years ago, my heart melted and I couldn’t wait to share it with my kids. My eldest liked it – but it was in the same way I liked NKOTB back in the day – like she’d figured out it mattered to someone she wanted to please, so she was willing to politely clap along. But my youngest? She LOVES it. In a #yourmyfavouritetoday kind of way (not that I do that. EVER).
Anyway, the first time we did it – and I sang it – we got to the end; she took the book; babbled a few bars of the tune; and passed it back to me. I suspect she’s musical, so we’re looking for ways to encourage that. Anyway, this one makes the mix. Does this redeem me at all for my first choice? If the answer’s yes, I regret to tell you that IT’S. ALL. DOWNHILL. FROM. HERE.
Can’t Choose – JRDN featuring Kardinal Offishall
So here we return to my downward spiral of parental shame. I don’t know what it IS about this one, but when it comes on the radio in the car my 18-month-old totally loses her Goldfish. She starts bopping and dipping and babbling happily. Really, it’s adorable. It would be more adorable if it wasn’t to THIS song.
Really, as far as messaging goes in current songs, it’s no more horrible than most, but let’s summarize, shall we? He starts the song liking two girls, but he can’t choose. So they’ll just have to deal with that. That is, if they want to hang with the awesomeness that is HIM. And, apparently, WHO WOULDN’T?!
Then he leaves the house. And meets two more girls. So he’ll date them as well – if that’s cool with all of them. ‘Cause, Robert Palmer style, he’s addicted to love. He then asks, “Aren’t we all?” Like an ’80s throwback reference makes it cute or okay or somehow renaissance to be dating at least four women at once. Mostly? By this stage, while marvelling at his time management skills, I’m mostly just thinking … ewww. But really? Aren’t we all? Aren’t we all.
If not – shall we peruse the video? Again, totally benign by today’s standards. I’d even call it a fun, harmless, escapist romp for the average guy. But still, it’s also kind of everything that just makes me, well, throw up a bit in my mouth, when I think about the messages it will end up sending to my daughters when they are a bit older. Pretty’s your currency. That’s valued above all else. Remember that, use it accordingly, while simultaneously not getting used, and life will go great for you. Any questions? See pop culture.
Sure, every now and then pop culture thankfully barfs up a Missy Elliot or something at you, but that was 2002, and the “conform to “How to be a Girl” box” messaging seems to be coming a little faster, harder and stronger today than I remember it. I don’t know, though. Maybe it’s just harder to find those rare gems in the middle of the seemingly never-ending gyrating bikini grind?
Sorry. We should get back to the factual summary of the video, yes? Two singer fellows surrounded by a multitude of beautiful women in bikinis. Every now and then they are randomly on A BOAT. Oh! And then there’s a Mardi Gras party. With glitter. And more bikinis. Just ’cause. Apparently even when it comes to theme, they can’t choose.
So let’s move this crazy conga line along, shall we? Next up my mini maestros give you:
Pound the Alarm – Nikki Minaj
So, speaking of bikinis and Mardi Gras, I give you my 4-year-old’s 2nd favourite song. This hit big last year. That was the year she started pre-school, and the year I was on mat-leave for my youngest. So we spent a lot of time in the car going to and from pre-school. And this song was on the radio. Frequently. Like uber frequently. And she loved it. There were times she’d ask for it and I could just flip stations and find it. Because it was played. That frequently. EVERYWHERE. And I did it. Because – hey! My world peace.
Then it went off the air. And she asked. And I couldn’t deliver. And she cried. And CRIED. Because it was HER SONG! So I bought Much Dance 2013. And then she decided she also liked Ghagnan Style. Sigh.
For what it’s worth? I actually quite like Nikki Minaj and the song. Maybe not for my preschooler, but generally speaking. And despite the fact that a quick google search of Nikki Minaj encourages me instantly to also search for “nip slips” I remain hopeful – if she isn’t “done” – that she might yet do something positive for women outside the industry. But I also have a soft spot for Britney, so take that with all the naïve authority it lacks.
But that takes me to our last choice of the evening! For this, we go firmly back to young girl world and give you:
Barbie: Princess and the Popstar – Here I Am!
This is my four-year-old’s favourite movie. For almost the last year if I’m honestly counting. We’ve hit the stage where she sings along, knows some of the dance moves, and pumps her fist and twirls along with Barbie. Sometimes, when I’m lazy at bedtime, I just let her watch this video on my iPhone instead of reading a book #gostraighttomommyjaildonotcollect200dollars.
That said? It’s quite the earworm. And a pretty positive message. I have to say, having prepped myself for a fight against daughters who were apparently destined to be Disney Princess imbibing sponges (based on reading various books like Peggy Orenstein’s Cinderella Ate My Daughter) I was ready to HATE Barbie Entertainment and rage against the glittered machine. But actually, set aside some of the obvious body image issues (or that the question posed in this example is: If you have to choose between being a Princess and a Popstar, WHICH ONE?!), and the rest of the messaging is actually pretty positive. All told? There are worse things to sit through. The Cyndi Lauper shout out sings to my “secretly still wants to be 19 soul”. And I secretly hope the boat Barbie sinks at 1:09 in the video is JRDN’s HMS Indecisive. Be the dream!
So Santa’s bringing the movie to my eldest for Christmas (so we can stop renting it weekly). Until next time: Be who you want! Never a doubt!
Question to other parents: What were the songs your children decided they loved from a young age?