"Be thankful in all things, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you." I Thes 5:18

Thursday, December 30, 2010

That Naughty Song Your Singing

This post is not a soap box or really here to say anything....it's just random mental musing. Even I don't have much of a conclusion myself.

Music is a hot topic with me. I love music and Rick and I both are pretty laid back about it unless it's explicitly s*xual. If it makes me uncomfortable, I just use that as a guide. I agree with my kids though, it's a bummer when some of these songs are dirty because their musical quality is fun. I think my most recent frustration was one or two from Ke$ha. A lot of her stuff is dirty muck wrapped in a fun package.
Yet this Christmas I was thinking about the irony of it. So many songs we are comfortable with and use to have some really naughty meanings. See, if one song about s*x is not allowed, then you should feel just as bad singing that oldie about it too! Yet we don't, really, we don't.

The song that got me realizing this was the famous Christmas song "It's Cold Outside". I love that song and love to sing it at Christmas, don't' you! Of course you do. Yet, here are the lyrics:

I really can't stay
(but baby it's cold outside)
I've got to go away
(but baby it's cold outside)
This evening has been
(been hoping that you'd drop in)
So very nice
(i'll hold your hands, they're just like ice)
My mother will start worry
(beautiful whats your hurry)
My father will be pacing the floor
(listen to the fireplace roar)
So really i'd better scurry
(beautiful please don't hurry)
but maybe just a half a drink more
(put some records on while i pour)
the neighbors might faint
(baby it's bad out there)
say what's in this drink
(no cabs to be had out there)
i wish i knew how
(your eyes are like starlight now)
to break this spell
(i'll take your hat, your hair looks swell)
i ought to say "no, no, no sir"
(mind if i move in closer)
at least i'm gonna say that i tried
(what's the sense in hurtin' my pride)
i really can't stay
(oh baby don't hold out)

both:baby it's cold out side

i simply must go
(but baby it's cold outside)
the answer is no
(but baby it's cold outside)
your welcome has been
(how lucky that you dropped in)
so nice and warm
(look out the window at that storm)
my sister will be suspicious
(gosh your lips look delicious)
my brother will be there at the door
(waves upon the tropical shore)
my maiden aunts mind is vicious
(gosh your lips are delicious)
but maybe just a cigarette more
(never such a blizzard before)
i've gotta get home
(but baby you'd freeze out there)
say lend me a coat
(it's up to your knees out there)
you've really been grand
(i thrill when you touch my hand)
but don't you see?
(how can you do this thing to me?)
there's bound to be talk tomorrow
(think of my lifelong sorrow)
at least there will be plenty implied
(if you got pneumonia and died)
i really can't stay
(get over that old out)

It's really a song about a guy who is trying to lure a woman to stay and mess around with him and in order to do that he's encouraging her to drink despite her protest to do the right thing and go home. He's really a selfish creep with one thing on his mind. Yeah, that's what the song is really about. Yet will I be glad to hear it come back on every year and love the scene from "Elf" every time? Yep.
Should I though?
I don't know.

I find it interesting that we draw lines in some places that we don't in others when it comes to propriety, proper or un, good or bad. We really all just define our own. Oldies like "Wake Up Little Suzie" or "My Baby Does the Hanky Panky" are innocent traditionally but we tap our mental little "no-no" finger at Katy Perry, Lady Gaga, or Madonna. No one really cringes anymore when they hear Ricky Nelson sing about all his relationships with women all over the world in "Travilin' Man" or criticize the fact that he's a player! Do I love that song too? Yep.
So, you can see why I can't seem to find a really good reason to be legalistically strict about some modern stuff my kids like. Yes, I do have lines but they are drawn more by individual conviction than black and white across the board reason. For, if I draw that line and teach them that, I'll honestly have to take "It's Cold Outside" off my allowed list!

All this really started when Emma really started liking Katy Perry's song "TGIF". At first I was against it but as I thought about it I decided it was better to talk to them about the song (which actually has more danger in it's reference to teenage drinking than s*x) rather than shun it. Would I actually want my kids to "dance on table tops and take too many shots"? No. I also would not want them doing the Hanky Panky in their car, playing women all over the world, or trying to get someone drunk to sleep with them, all of which are covered in socially acceptable songs.

So, what is it? Does music somehow give us the licence, rather like fiction or pretend play, to connect with things we would never say or do? When I say pretend play I mean pointing a play gun at our buddy when playing cowboys and Indians exclaiming "bam, your dead!". Of course in reality I'd never want him to really act that out.

I don't know. For now, I trust my gut where the lines are, but it's really just an interesting thing to think about.
The only thing I DO KNOW:
I want to think it through and make sure the lines I draw with my kids make sense and are not just legalistically founded.

In the mean time, here's just a fun look at innocent Ricky. Just his "Leave it to Beaver" look makes you feel your more conservative for enjoying his music! Nope......he's a PLAYYYYAAA!!! :)

1 comment:

Amy B said...

I can remember when Andy and I were young, my mom would play records like Cool n the Gang and Hale and Oats. When they would sing something we didn't understand, we'd ask mom what it means and she would always say, "they're singing about love" wink, wink and she would grab our hands and start dancing. If nothing else, these songs in our present day bring up lots of opportunities to talk to our kids about what they're singing about! In the mean time, dance with them!