Folklore Music Poster Image


Good messages, pretty melodies, but kind of banal.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Lots of lyrics about being true to yourself.


There is a passing reference to a rape.

Not applicable
Not applicable

There is a passing reference to Diet Coke and another to a Camaro.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

One song talks about getting drunk and taking drugs.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that the lyrics on this CD encourage kids to be who they are and not followers. There's nothing concerning here.

What's the story?

Nelly Furtado hits on some positive messages on FOLKLORE. The first two tracks, \"One-Trick Pony\" and \"Powerless (Say What You Want)\" warn about selling out to a predictable, mass-produced image. She also honors her cultural roots; she sings in Portuguese and the song \"Island of Wonder\" is about the Azores, where her parents are from. The most controversial song, \"Explode,\" mentions both drinking and drug use (\"Slip the acid on your tongue?/ We couldn't get enough\"), but it's far from a glamorous portrayal; the lyrics also address a friend being raped behind a McDonalds and contains the refrain \"Stuck in the teenage waste.\" But too often Furtado's words are vague, poorly written, or simply clichés (In \"Build You Up\" she sings \"Baby, they build you up/ Only to tear you down/ Don't give up).

Is it any good?


It's hard to get too excited about this album. The pop tracks lack originality and, with minor exceptions, Furtado's voice isn't big enough to bring any energy to her ballads. While she is to be commended for fusing varied elements (listeners will hear mandolin and cavaquinho, a traditional Portuguese and Brazilian guitar, mixed with modern turntable techniques, as well as more modern scratching), the results are basically banal.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about "One-Trick Pony" and "Powerless (Say What You Want)" and how celebrities are packaged for popular consumption -- and often white-washed along the way.

Music details

Artist:Nelly Furtado
Release date:November 25, 2003
Parental advisory:No
Edited version available:No

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Adult Written byjumpinbini April 9, 2008
i loved nelly furtado's first album and waited a long time for this album. i love that nelly furtado puts CULTURE into her music, she uses her portuguese background in music and mixes it into her own music. she also has some songs that have the portuguese language in it. this is far better than most of the other "music" that kids are listening to these days. good messages and some good melodies.
Teen, 16 years old Written byevolinag August 18, 2013

Some mature themes in incredible pop album

Despite being her most critisized album, "Folklore" is full of powerful songs by one of the world's most gifted pop singers of her time, Nelly Furtado. May it be the magnificant and catchy "Powerless", which gets stuck in your head right after the first time you hear the chorus, or the wonderfully melancholy "Try", which makes you feel exactly what the singer's feeling at the moment. Packed up with several outstanding songs, Furtado really makes this album one of the most memorable of the entire decade. There are rhythms and beats so extraordinary, it's like nothing you've ever heard - in a good way - and marks a great break with the then-modern hip-pop sounds, and still is a great alternative to nowaday's pop music. An especially amazing song in both lyrics and music is "Explode", in which Furtado brings up several mature and sensitive topics in a very skillful way. Still, while not exactly foul-mouthed, the album contains several mature topics that should be listened to by more mature audiences only, and has references to drugs, rape and puberty - especially in the song "Explode". Still, these themes are not lengthen up and are just referenced to briefly.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking