Circus Music Poster Image

Circus

(i)

 

Pop princess sings mainly about -- surprise! -- sex.
Popular with kids

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Some songs celebrate clubbing and partying, as well as the idea of acting in certain ways to get attention. On some tracks Spears shows off a strong character and talks about not being victimized or fooled.

Violence
Not applicable
Sex

On "Mmm Papi" Spears moans and sings seductively ("Lil' miss fast car,
I can really get far, and don't break my heart, let's make out (Let's make out! Let's make out!)." "Lace and Leather" is a sort of vocal strip tease that talks about lingerie and high heels.

Language

"Hell" is said once and "b-tch" is sung on the song "Lace and Leather." "Blur" includes the line, "This sh-t is way too f--king bright." But the expletives are edited out. The song "If You Seek Amy" contains a play on words you wouldn't want your tweens and teens to repeat.

Consumerism

A few songs include references to Spears buying what she wants. Having money is equated with power: "I get things, everything I wanted / My own way, your time, goldmines."

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

"If U Seek Amy" makes references to smoking and drinking cocktails. "Blur" is about someone who can't remember what she did the night before, as if she in a drunken blackout.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this is a steamy album with lots of seductive lyrics -- as well as moaning and purring. While many of the songs are catchy and danceable, the words and messages don't waiver much from the central theme: sex.

What's the story?

The follow-up to her less-than impressive CD Blackout, CIRCUS finds Spears back in familiar territory. The dozen tracks are a collection primarily about no-good, two-timing, deceptive guys, while the rest range from seductive celebrations of sexy men ("Mmm Papi" and "Lace and Leather") to a tribute to her children ("My Baby").

Is it any good?

QUALITY

With Circus, Spears addresses her critics and attempts to prove that she's still got it. The album resurrects

the pouty-faced pop singing of the star's youth -- with mixed results. You'll hear some "Baby One More Time"-type vocals as well as an ultra-sugary sweet ballad ("My Baby"). There are some addictive beats and hooks on the album, most notably on the successful "Womanizer" and "Radar."

 

But sex in all its variations reigns. The song "If You Seek Amy" has a sly double entendre (say it slowly and you'll get it). And her try at Latin rhythms on "Mmm Papi," finds her using an older man. Kids will probably just want to download the hot singles, not the entire album. And that's probably a good thing.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about Britney Spears the singer and Britney Spears the media object. How does Spears' music differ from her public image? How does she treat the media on this album -- including the title's allusion to a "media circus?" Do you think she is hurt or helped by all the tabloid attention she has received? Why do you think that many of her songs refer to her publicized scandals?

Music details

Artist:Britney Spears
Release date:December 2, 2008
Label:Jive Records
Genre:Pop
Parental advisory:No
Edited version available:No

This review of Circus was written by

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Quality

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Parent of a 17 year old Written bylove2 September 24, 2009

awe great song bad video!!!

the song by itself is OK but the music video is REALLY NOT GOOD! They show britney waking around in her bra and undies! and the basic point of the song when she says "all eyes on me in the center of the ring just like a circus" it means all the boys are foucusing on her and how sexy she is! GROSS!
What other families should know
Too much sex
Parent of a 3, 4, and 11 year old Written bybirdmk1 February 27, 2009

Errrm - not for my pre-teen!

Full of sexual innuendo and alcohol and drug references. The worst is the song “If You Seek Amy”, which is actually pronounced “F.*.*.K. me”!
Kid, 10 years old March 24, 2011

If U Seek Amy has a play on words.

Listen close: "All the boys and all the girls are beggin' to if U seek Amy". Don't get it? Let's change it: "beggin' to F-U-seek Amy". STILL don't get it? I'll change all the words: "beggin' to F-*-C-K me". Yep. The f-bomb.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking

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