Doowops & Hooligans

Music review by
Stephanie Bruzzese, Common Sense Media
Doowops & Hooligans Music Poster Image
R&B album is excellent; songs range from mellow to mature.

Parents say

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Kids say

age 11+
Based on 4 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this music.

Positive Messages

Positive messages about supporting the person you care for are juxtaposed with negative lines about being a player and trying to dull emotional pain through substance use.

Positive Role Models & Representations

A mixed bag of behaviors: acceptance and support for loved ones, but also viewing others as sexual conquests and engaging in excessive alcohol and drug use.


The song "Grenade" uses violent metaphors to describe everything a guy would endure for his girl: "I'd catch a grenade for ya ... fall on a blade for ya."


Some lyrics about sex -- "clothes are not required for what we got planned" -- and sexual situations -- "throw my hand in my pants."


Narnia, Frankenstein.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

References to marijuana and alcohol.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Doowops & Hooligans is a mixed bag of mellow and mature content. On the one hand, some sweet songs couldn't be cleaner, such as "Just the Way You Are." Yet other tunes describe a guy's attempts to land one casual sexual conquest after another, as well as drinking and marijuana use. Parents of tweens are better off downloading tracks versus purchasing the entire album.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

Kid, 12 years old November 29, 2014

Full of hit songs you'll recognize, as well as some new finds!

Great 2nd album by bruno mars (his 1st is really little known) with only a few eyebrow raising lines, which these days is a record number. Even if you don'... Continue reading
Teen, 16 years old Written byrebma97 March 13, 2014
I can't say this is my favorite album, but I think it has some of Bruno's best songs on it. As CSM said, some songs have better messages than others.... Continue reading

What's the story?

The first full-length album from super-smooth R&B crooner Bruno Mars, the Grammy-nominated DOOWOPS & HOOLIGANS, contains 10 songs that are all over the map content-wise. Some tunes like "Just the Way You Are" and "Count on Me" couldn't be cleaner or more endearing, describing a guy's love and devotion for his favorite girl. Yet other songs, including "Runaway" and "Liquor Store Blues," cover just about every adult topic there is, from casual sex to drug and alcohol use.

Is it any good?

There's a reason why everyone from Eminem to B.o.B. has asked Bruno Mars to contribute vocals to their music: he has killer pipes. In his own album, the pure, airy quality of his vocals combines with various arrangements ranging from reggae to R&B, making for a super-catchy record that could serve as the backdrop for any good time.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about why Bruno Mars would record songs with such strikingly different maturity levels on this album. Does it broaden his audience?

  • Which type of song do you like better on this album -- the squeaky-clean tunes or the much more adult tracks? Why?

Music details

  • Artist: Bruno Mars
  • Release date: October 3, 2011
  • Type: Album
  • Label: Elektra
  • Genre: R&B
  • Parental advisory: No
  • Edited version available: No
  • Last updated: November 11, 2020

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