Concrete Rose

Common Sense Media says

Sweet vocals, but falls short of diva status.





What parents need to know

Positive messages
Not applicable

A few references to doing jail time and gangsta life.


Lots of innuendo, and some very sexy photos.


The "n" word appears a few times, for no really good reason.


Package includes inserts advertising pre-paid debit cards and juicebox personal video player.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Nothing obvious.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that the formula for this CD seems to have been to take two parts sexual innuendo, one part so-so songwriting, a dash of racist epithet, and blend together.

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What's the story?

Ashanti puts her best foot forward on CONCRETE ROSE, but it's not quite big enough to fill the R&B diva shoes she so clearly longs for. Everything about this, her third album, is just so-so. Starting with the singing, Ashanti's pleasantly adequate voice is carefully and electronically enhanced by her production team, who should get the lion's share of credit for anything good about the CD. Her vocal limitations are beautifully disguised, but it becomes obvious after a while that this young woman just doesn't have the power or passion necessary to hold her own among many of her phenomenally talented contemporaries. There's a sweetness and a bit of style, but not much else.

Is it any good?


Move on to the songs, which are also pleasantly adequate. Filled with repetitions and clichés, they just aren't all that interesting. A few lovely, beautifully produced songs are surrounded by filler. And then the lyrics: a few gratuitous uses of the "n" word, with no apparent redeeming social message; the rest is either sap or glossy sexual innuendo -- nothing original or amazing enough to get excited about. Let's hope this young artist is allowed to keep growing, and growing up.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about how this CD compares with other R&B CDs. Are there songs that stand out? Do some of the songs seem rather clichéd?

Music details

Release date:December 7, 2004
Label:Def Jam
Parental advisory:No
Edited version available:No

This review of Concrete Rose was written by

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  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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