"Rude Boy" (CD single)

Music review by
Jacqueline Rupp, Common Sense Media
"Rude Boy" (CD single) Music Poster Image
Parents recommend
Sexier-than-usual Rihanna single is too hot for kids!

Parents say

age 14+
Based on 15 reviews

Kids say

age 13+
Based on 37 reviews

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

There's only one message here and that's lust! The entire song is about seducing a more-than-willing guy and wanton desires.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The good thing here is that Rihanna portrays herself as a woman in control of her sexuality. "Relax, lemme do it how I wanna." But that doesn't mean the song is good for kids!


There's a lot of talk about being excited and various body parts, such as: "Boy can you get it up...boy is it big enough" and "touch me there...pull my hair" and "give it to you harder."

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this single is much racier than Rihanna's typical dance tunes. It's all about sex, and the lyrics do not shy away from begging for a romp. Although the song doesn't mention any body parts specifically or use any bad language, the message is obviously clear: "I like it when you tell me kiss it here, I like it when you tell me move it there." Watch out for the sexually-charged video as well, which shows some breast grabbing, butt-flashing, and thrusting on a lion, among other scandalous moves!

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byMacyS January 9, 2012

Great Song

My 13 year old daughter loves this song and thinks it has a really good beat. She and my 3 year old and I always jam out to this song in the car!
Parent of an infant, infant, and 11-year-old Written bynuku May 5, 2011


Great for kids. I believe commonsense's article on this song is incorrect.
Teen, 13 years old Written byMerveille January 20, 2021

Too sexy for kids

The album rated R is not rated R because teens less than 17 can still watch it but this song is not good for kids. If you buy the cd buy the clean one because i... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written byspeyan727 October 10, 2018

What's the story?

"RUDE BOY" is the second single off of Rihanna's 2009 album Rated R. It's become one of the more popular tracks, and is the third US single to emerge from the release. Full of seduction and sexiness, the song is all about going after the "bad boy" and showing him what you got (in the bedroom).

Is it any good?

As its title implies, Rihanna borrows a little off the "rude boy" Caribbean tradition of Jamaican bad boys and mixes a touch of reggae flair in with her traditional hip-hop sound. Her vocals fit in perfectly with both genres, and the effect is a super-cool, almost aloof treatment that contrasts perfectly with the steaming hot lyrics. This is definitely a song meant for the clubs, the age-restricted clubs that is!

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about female role models in music. How do female musicians use sexuality as a way to grab attention?

  • Talk about music lyrics. Many parents might think of Rihanna as a safe artist, since she's had many kid-friendly hits. However, does this racy song show you that it's not just Lil' Wayne that you have to watch out for? Is it almost more important to check out the lyrics from "safe" artists because of this fact?

  • The video for this song appears on Vevo. What internet video sites are you allowed on? Are there restrictions to what you can watch on these sites? Why is it important to watch out for music videos as well as inappropriate lyrics?

Music details

  • Artist: Rihanna
  • Release date: February 25, 2010
  • Label: Def Jam
  • Genre: Hip-hop
  • Parental advisory: No
  • Edited version available: Yes
  • Last updated: November 11, 2020

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