Ahhhh…the eighties. Remember that time? Driving your Hot Wheels up the street to have play My Little Pony v. HeMan with your best friend? (Just me?)
You could just walk out the front door and as long as you were back by dark, no one called the police? And the music – oh the music. You and your best friend would grab your air mikes and your headband and aerobisize – singing along with no idea what the lyrics meant.
It was so fun and innocent. Oh…but wait. Then you got older and realized that your favorites were rife with innuendo…
Some of my favorites:
She-Bop (1983) – Cyndi Lauper
I was a huge Cyndi fan (still am). She was on the soundtrack for one of my favorite movies of all time – The Goonies. If they’re smart, the producers of the remake will invite her back. I can remember “bopping” along with this song a lot in my youth. And yes – I’m just talking about my head. Apparently though, Cyndi wasn’t – this song is about (insert shocked noise here) masturbation.
Like a Virgin (1984) – Madonna
I was also a huge Madge fan (although I must admit, not so much any more). I can remember being embarrassed about liking her in high school. But when Like A Virgin came out – I was all there with my off the shoulder shirt and tights (which, BTW, I still rock). And of course, I completely believed that Madge was a virgin. Not just “like” one.
Physical (1981) – Olivia Newton John
Olivia Newton John in Grease is just (slightly) before my time. When I became aware of her, she was all into the leotards, head bands and leg warmers. This song is supposed to be about physical fitness. But come on. “Let’s get physical”?? Nice try Olivia.
Touch Me (1986) – Samantha Fox
Touch me now…I wanna feel your body. Right. OK – I knew what this song was about. You know. Like making out. Second base even. Don’t tell my mom though.
Dancing with Myself (1982)– Billy Idol
Like Cyndi’s song…I *thought* this song was just about a guy who liked to dance alone. I didn’t realize that “dancing alone” meant…dancing alone.
All of these songs were precursors for today’s music – some of which is much bolder (and some of which actually even say the word “sex” among other choice words). Many even come with “sanatized” versions that even Grandma would approve of. Of course, the kids and I listen to them both ways (I blame my mother for introducing me to the songs of the eighties…)
The kids and I listen to:
Milkshake (2003) – Kelis
This song came out two years before my eldest was born, and I listened to it regularly even then. The song is, of course, about young Kelis shaking her “wares” and gaining some attention of the males in her neighborhood.
Kiwi (2007) – Maroon 5
I am a huge Maroon 5 fan. I *almost* went to see them in concert, but unfortunately, Hubs is not quite as big a fan. My sister has suggested that next time I call her (and I will). I actually had no idea what this song was about the first five hundred times I listened to it. But one day, in the car, I listened closely to the lyrics and figured it out. (In case you haven’t, it’s about oral sex – don’t tell my mom).
F$*k You (2009)- Lily Allen
This is one of my favorites – and it was the ringtone for the Goblin King for a bit (until it came on one day in the car when I was unprepared). See…I usually sing with the song, so it’s been easy enough to convince the kids that she’s actually saying “Thank You”. I should note though – this song isn’t about sex. It’s about assholes.
Without You (2002) – Eminem
Ok…this song isn’t about sex either. It’s about Eminem flipping a ton of people the bird set to music. The thing that (in my mind) makes it controversial is that although the original has some very questionable language, a sanitized version appeared on the Despicable Me 2 soundtrack, making it accessible to even your toddler…(well played Eminem, well played).
And just for fun, here’s the Despicable Me 2 trailer…
What about you? What song did you listen to in your youth that you’ve since figured out isn’t so innocent? What songs to you listen to with your kids that even your mom wouldn’t approve of? What’s your ex’s ringtone?