"Ho Hey" (CD Single)

Music review by
Kim Alessi, Common Sense Media
"Ho Hey" (CD Single) Music Poster Image
Acoustic folk-pop song about unrequited love; clean video.

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Kids say

age 7+
Based on 5 reviews

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

The message of love's persistence is endearing, but suggests a one-sided love that's unhealthy: "(Ho) I don’t think you're right for him/ (Hey) Look at might have been if you’d / (Ho) Took a bus to Chinatown (Hey)/ I'd be standing on Canal/ (Ho) And Valerie (Hey) / (Ho) She’d be standing next to me (Hey)..."

Positive Role Models & Representations

Perseverance is an admirable and necessary trait in any relationship, but it's got to be mutual for a relationship to work: "(Ho) So show me family/ (Hey) All the blood that I would bleed / (Ho) I don’t know where I belong / (Hey) I don’t know where I went wrong / (Ho) But I can write a song (Hey) ..."


Lyrics mention sleeping alone: "(Ho) I’ve been sleeping here instead / (Hey) I’ve been sleeping in my bed / (Ho) Sleeping in my bed (Hey)." But they're about lost love and a broken heart, not sex.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that "Ho Hey" is a simple and tender song about unrequited love. It's about a guy who's lost his love to someone else and is trying, in vain, to win her back. There's no sexy stuff here, so it's appropriate for tweens and up. There's lots of punctuating exclamations of "Ho!" and "Hey!" throughout the song. The video's also sparse and shows the band playing in a nearly unfurnished home; it also shows the heartbroken singer surrounded by friends rather than being downtrodden and alone.

User Reviews

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Kid, 11 years old August 1, 2020

Sweet love song

This song is sad yet hopeful. There is some creep-oid stuff (stalking, jealousy), but it's clean.
Kid, 11 years old May 27, 2013


Don't bother listening to this song. It's plain horrible

What's the story?

\"HO HEY\" is the first single from the Lumineers' self-titled debut album. The Denver band consists of members Wesley Schultz, Jeremiah Fraites, and Neyla Pekarek, and is known for their simple, stripped-down, folk instrumentation, with lyrics loaded with emotion and intimacy.

Is it any good?

"Ho Hey" is refreshing for its clarity. Not only can you hear every instrument -- every guitar and mandolin strum, foot stomp, and tambourine tap -- but (for those who’ve been there), you can also feel the singer's heart-tugging devotion to his love with a loneliness that's bittersweet. The video's sparse and shot in a quasi-sepia tone/Great Depression-era motif, with bare lightbulbs blinking to the pulse of the music, punctuating plenty of "Hos!" and "Heys!" This song's sure to get you stompin' and exclaiming along, whether you're brokenhearted or not.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about why the Lumineers refer to their own music as "simple." What's simple about it, the instrumentation, the lyrics, how the song is arranged or organized?

  • Sometimes change, like the end of a relationship or moving to a new school or new city, is hard to handle. What are some things you can do to help feel better and adjust to change?

  • What happens when a relationship is out of balance, if one person wants one thing and the other person wants something different? Are there ways to find a compromise?

Music details

  • Artist: The Lumineers
  • Release date: September 10, 2012
  • Type: Single
  • Label: Dualtone
  • Genre: Indie Rock
  • Parental advisory: No
  • Edited version available: No
  • Last updated: November 11, 2020

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