I have long lamented the existence of Kidz Bop as a grown up who wants to hear music the way it was intended to be heard. I mean, there are a lot of curse words I won’t say, but I still prefer to hear the “explicit” versions of songs over the radio edits.
But I have a six-year-old son who is about to turn seven, and I’ve already heard him sing along with songs by Lady Gaga, Train, and Maroon 5 that have lyrics I’m glad he doesn’t understand. (Maroon 5 is totally my fault, because I love them, but the others can be blamed on school!)
So when a rep for Kidz Bop contacted me about the upcoming (out today – July 17, 2012) release of Kidz Bop 22, I thought I would make TJ’s day by saying, “Let’s do it.” It was a hit, by the way, especially since I had them put his name on the shipping label.
Here’s the track list of the songs you can find on the Kidz Bop 22 CD:
- Stronger (made popular by Kelly Clarkson)
- Call Me Maybe (made popular by Carly Rae Jepsen)
- Starships (made popular by Nicki Minaj)
- Domino (made popular by Jessie J)
- Payphone (made popular by Maroon 5)
- Wild Ones (made popular by Flo Rida)
- Glad You Came (made popular by The Wanted)
- Drive By (made popular by Train)
- Part of Me (made popular by Katy Perry)
- What Makes You Beautiful (made popular by One Direction)
- Dance Again (made popular by Jennifer Lopez)
- Boyfriend (made popular by Justin Bieber)
- Feel So Close (made popular by Calvin Harris)
- Somebody That I Used to Know (made popular by Gotye)
- Tonight is the Night (made popular by Outasight)
- Set Fire to the Rain feat. Ethan Bortnick (made popular by Adele)
I like some of the original songs that appear on this CD, like Payphone and Drive By. Then there’s Call Me Maybe and Somebody That I Used to Know…songs I wouldn’t really say I like, but I find I can’t stop singing them when I hear them. Then there’s the songs that make me scream, because I don’t want to hear anything remotely related to Nicki Minaj and Justin Bieber. But compilation albums are like that.
One of the hallmarks of Kidz Bop is the changes they make to questionable lyrics in the songs they cover. For the most part, I approve. Not as an adult appreciating the music, but as a parent who doesn’t want her adorably naive child saying the word “hell” when he’s singing along with Drive By. There are still some questionable themes in some of the songs, however. They may have taken the explicitly sexual lyrics and the references to alcohol out of Wild Ones, but the song is still rather implicitly suggestive. Starships was changed so much from the original lyrics that it’s barely recognizable. (Though, admittedly, I’d never heard it before I heard the Kidz Bop version, and I had to Google it for this review.) It’s worth noting that the target age group for Kidz Bop is 5-12. Younger kids like TJ won’t notice or care if the words are remarkably different from what they may have heard on the radio, but older kids will probably be turned off by the idea.
I’d be lying if I said I actually liked Kidz Bop 22. (Does any parent actually like Kidz Bop?) But it’s tolerable for TJ’s sake. And he likes it. That’s what it’s about, right? It’s for him, not for me. And it’s pretty darn cute to listen to him singing along and dancing to the music. It’s earned a place as disc 3 in my minivan’s 6-CD changer, so I can switch over to it from my highly inappropriate Halestorm CD when I pick the boy up after summer camp.
A side note: If you’re interested in getting Kidz Bop 22 for your children, at least through Amazon, it’s cheaper to get the CD than the digital download. Maybe iTunes has a better deal, but it’s something to keep in mind!
Tags: Family-Friendly Music, kids, music, reviews