“Twinkle” to Top 40: A Music Revolution

“I’m going to the basement,” my just turned 4-year-old daughter declared.

“Sure,” I said while trying to de-clutter the kitchen.

A few minutes later I heard loud music coming from the karaoke machine and a little voice belt into the microphone:


I froze.

And proceeded to hear my tiny child sing the song “Domino” – (by Jesse J, if you’ve never had the pleasure) complete with lyrics:

Dancing in the moonlight… Take me down like I’m a Domino… Oh baby baby got me feelin’ so right…

The karaoke machine that started it all

The karaoke machine that started it all

I felt sure that a 4-year-old proclaiming her sexiness into a microphone cranked on high would bring protective services to my door in a matter of minutes.   So I went charging downstairs.  And turned the music off.

“I’m singing,” my child protested.

“I know,” I said.  “That’s the problem.”

This is the third child who cannot remember to put away the pile of naked Barbies strewn around her room, but yet has a mind like a steel trap when it comes to lyrics.  She can perform “Moves Like Jagger,” “Dynamite” and “Single Ladies”.  Not to mention multiple Lady Gaga tunes and “Home” by Phillip Phillips.

It’s my fault, I know I know I know.   Reason #324 why I will not receive the ‘Mother of the Year’ award.

She listens to music with her older sister.  A little Taylor Swift here, a little Katy Perry there.  I thought it was pretty harmless.  But after eight years of listening to nursery rhymes, toddler tunes and the Beauty and the Beast soundtrack, we’re finally listening to the radio when we’re all together in the van (I now know too  much about Radio Disney).  While I have a 9-year-old and a 7-year-old, I seem to have forgotten I still have a 4-year-old sitting in the back. With a really good memory.

As tried to figure out just when I lost all control of the proper upbringing of my child, I had flashbacks of my own history with risqué tunes at a young age.  I could sing Rod Stewart  (If you want my body and you think I’m sexy..) “Centerfold” by J. Geils Band was in my 45’s collection.   Who let me listen to that??

My mother.  Aha!  The same mother who let me  sing “50 Ways to Leave Your Lover” by Paul Simon from the back of our station wagon.  She also let me listen to the soundtrack of “Jesus Christ Superstar” and a lot of Neil Diamond.  So perhaps it all balanced out.

I vowed to find better song selections to prevent my sweet child from turning in Honey Boo Boo’s best friend.   Perhaps some 80’s easy listening.  So on our way to Target (I’m always going to Target) I flipped the stations.  She heard a snippet of one song.

“Go back!”  she yelled.  “I like this one!”


Maybe Beauty and the Beast wouldn’t be so bad for a little while longer.

7 thoughts on ““Twinkle” to Top 40: A Music Revolution

  1. This is a great example, Christy, of the mindlessness of double-messaging we have received, buy-into, and perpetuate. Because something is, or has ‘always been done that way’, doesn’t mean that it is the right thing, really.
    I understand the need to bristle,hearing 4 yr olds singing about being ‘sexy’. I nod familiarly, recalling my parents’ disapproval of songs I cherished, for the same reasons.
    I totally get why you wouldn’t want your child to be BFF’s with Honey Boo Boo. And you and I are not alone, feeling as we do.

    My point is, you are sooooo right in your assessment. Every generation has a musical repertoire that shocks and unnerves their parents! (Elvis was pure evil, for singing about suspicious minds & being a hound dog.)

    I really, really love that you wrote this. I’ve no doubt it resonates with pretty much everyone, parent, or not. 🙂

  2. I will never forget when my 3 year old son asked me to turn on the “Sexy and I know it” song. We listened to a lot of radio disney on the way to daycare after that. I know that he had no idea what he was talking about.. but it seemed wrong to hear a 3 year old even say the word ‘sexy’.

    • Reese – OOOH, that’s a good one. Wasn’t too fond of the ‘ol “Hey sexy lady!” from Gangnam Style either. Especially when my 6 yr old son hollered at me one day “Hey sexy mama!” Enough said. Thanks for reading!

  3. i freaked when Marissa started singing Rhianna(sp) Sticks and Stones will break my bones but chains and whips excite me,when she was 10…And how about Whistle by Flo-Rida.Check out those lyrics.The again I rocked to Lola by the Kinks at a young age and I had no idea what a transvstite was..

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