Now That's What I Call Music! 12

Music review by
Cynthea Riesenberg, Common Sense Media
Now That's What I Call Music! 12 Music Poster Image
You may want to listen carefully, track by track.

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Many tracks advocate sexual behavior parents will not want their children emulating.


Nas refers to parolees, gangstas; Nelly mentions a shooting over a pair of sneakers.


More than a few tracks reduce women to sex objects, praising them for their "sex style" ("Bump, Bump, Bump"), or their sexual involvement ("the one that you humpin'" ("'03 Bonnie & Clyde").


A number of tracks include suggestive references like "the one that you humpin'" ("'03 Bonnie & Clyde") or "I like your little sex style" ("Bump, Bump, Bump").


Nelly extols varieties of expensive sneakers in "Air Force Ones." Nas refers to plasma TV and other big-ticket items in "Made You Look."

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

"Made You Look" refers to passing a fifth and losing consciousness.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that they may want to listen carefully track by track. The lyrics tend to focus on physical attraction and sexual behavior with lots of posturing that may signify "cool" behavior to your teens but will definitely raise an eyebrow or two if you listen with tweens.

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What's the story?

Ounce for ounce, the NOW series packs more musical punch than most albums, thanks to the savvy grouping of familiar hits by reliable performers. NOW 12 is no exception.

Is it any good?

This album includes featuring established talents like Snoop Dog, LL Cool J, and Jay-Z and popular tracks like "03 Bonnie & Clyde," "Air Force Ones," and "Bump, Bump, Bump." Like its recent predecessors, NOW 12 includes plenty of hip-hop in this compilation. But the album also branches out to include some pop, R&B, and rock, like Telepopmusik's ubiquitous "Breathe," "When I'm Gone" by 3 Doors Down, and Chevelle's "The Red."

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the art of the mix tape, updated for today's technology. What makes a good compilation?

Music details

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