The Mum Network

Have music video’s become soft porn?


Having spent my fair share of time with a number of Gen Y’s lately, I’ve found myself trying to ditch AM talkback and listen to more FM radio channels and watch Channel V to ensure I’m up to speed on all things Gen Y. God forbid if I made a complete dick of myself when someone refers to an artist whom I’ve never heard of (like today when I confessed I had never heard an Amy Winehouse song, yes people, I live under a rock). It’s hard not to write this and sound like the oldest person who’s lost their fun-o-meter but seriously, at what point did it become acceptable for music videos to be soft porn?

Does anyone remember the days when we would wake up on a Saturday and Sunday morning and watch Channel 10’s Video Hits? Well I certainly do, in fact I can recall putting together many a dance troupe and Vogueing all the way through the house with all my girlfriends on a regular basis. It was enormous fun and that was how we consumed music videos. Mum seemed to be cool with it although who can’t remember the complete “outrage” from their Mum when Madonna’s ‘shock tactics’ with “Like a Prayer” were released – it worked, the music video was banned and we all listened to the song twice as much just because it was a bit risque and naughty. Sadly Video Hits has been cancelled by Channel 10, this no doubt has a lot to do with a little internet invention called YouTube.

From memory Rage was also on, I can’t recall if there was a morning version but there was a night time version and I certainly wasn’t allowed to watch it, I’m pretty sure Mum thought the interchanging weekly hippy/musician hosts were on crack and therefore I was 100% banned from being exposed to the crack heads for my own safety. Thank you Mum.

So with this in mind and my newfound “I’m so cool and can sing every word to almost every song on radio” approach, I turned on Channel V for my kids who are 6, 5 and 3 and got them prepared for a Saturday morning dance off. It’s important to keep in mind that Miss three knows how to get to “Single Ladies” on YouTube on my iphone and knows the dance moves backwards so naturally I thought a Saturday morning dance off to the final weeks of Video Hits would be awesome.

As I prepare to bust my moves with my kids I slowly realised something had changed in the music industry and I had clearly missed a big shift in popular culture over the last 15 years.

When did music videos become compulsory porn?

I’m a big fan of Beyonce but this was THE MOST tame video on the tele all morning. In essence there’s nothing wrong with it but my two boys were cracking up and laughing asking why Beyonce was in her bras (they think that you need one boob per bra and therefore two boobs equals a ‘bras’ plural, I’ve tried to correct them but every time I say bra, they crack up again, waiting for them to grow out of the boobs are hilarious stage). So, back to the point – REALLY Beyonce, when you have such a wide following and kids love you to bits do you have to have no clothes on to do it or is this the only way to sell music these days?

Yes, I’m aware I sound like the fun police and every teenage boy in the land would consider me an out of touch old fart but I just can’t remember music videos showing this much skin and rooting with clothes on. Seriously, some of these videos may as well just be a sex tape.

Having become a recent Lady Gaga fan, I adore the lyrics and music that Gaga is pumping out and the kids and I sing along in the car all the time. I even like her strange fashion, I think she’s a marketing genius with a much better voice than Madonna had in our day. Edge of Glory is a great song so as I danced my way around the loungeroom with the kids to this song thanking Gaga for wearing clothes in her music video at 2:24secs into our Edge of Glory dance off I suddenly found myself explaining to the kids as to why she was decked out in bondage gear – my explanation? Well it was flustered and unprepared so I made up some crap about her pretending to be a dog with a dog collar on – seriously, next thing I knew my daughter was on the floor trying to be a dog. God help me.

It must have been Gaga day because Born This Way then came on. This song is an anthem now and has a strong message for everyone. It’s had over 68 million views on YouTube (Yup!) and really is a fabbo song – but does she really have to give birth to her own head at the start of it? Again, more explanations to the kids as to why she’s dancing in her bras!

My kids love music and I would be really disappointed to take that experience away from them. In the meantime I’ve started explaining “marketing” to the kids, when one of their friends asked them why Gaga dressed up the way she does recently, they both went into a big long explanation about how to make more money and sell more records she needs to get more attention and the only way the media will pay attention to her is by her dressing up in loads of different clothes!

We’ve become so conditioned to viewing it ourselves that it seems perfectly ok for grown adults and yep, for us, we’re immune to it all but what about the kids? What about giving them a little more time to grow up? Maintain their innocence for a little longer? I can’t quite work out if I’m getting old and boring and am too protective of my kids or if anyone else agrees with me but regardless, wouldn’t it be nice to be able to sit in front of the tele with the little people and not worry about if you’re going to have to give them the sex education talk whilst watching a music video.

 

 

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