A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this music.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that overall this album is mostly OK for young teens, but parents should still be ready to talk about certain issues. A discussion about healthy relationships might be in order since this album presents some iffy role models for kids entering the dating scene. Talk of "not waiting," purposely picking the bad boy, and seeking revenge after a failed relationship are some of the dicey areas here. Although there's a definite sexiness to the songs, the lyrics don't really go beyond flirtation and kissing references.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
For fans familiar with Shakira's music, SHE WOLF might be a bit of a surprise. That's because the South American star has moved beyond the pop charts and jumped into the clubs, adding electronica and dancehall sounds to the mix this time around. That means there's lots of sound effects, techno beats, and synthesized sounds to be found on this, her third English album. Besides trying out new sounds, Shakira's lyrics also get a little darker, with songs focused on both the good and bad sides of love. Some of the famous names tied to this LP include Lil Wayne, who collaborates with her on "Give It Up to Me," and producers Timbaland and Pharrell Williams.
Is it any good?
Taking chances is usually a good thing for a musician. But when the results are as excellent as they are on this album, it's a reason to celebrate. Shakira brings the high-tech sounds of electronic pop and dancehall to the masses, making the genres easily digestible and user-friendly. But it's not just the hot sounds that make this album a stand-out: Shakira's lyrics and subject matter remain interesting and at time irreverent. After all, how many songs about gypsies have there been in the past decade, and how many other singers today can pull off singing about French fleas and bad plumbing while staying sexy? Teens may not appreciate the unusual lyrics, but they'll love the dance party beats.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about healthy romantic relationships. What is the proper way to handle a breakup? How should you treat someone in a relationship? Is cheating ever justified? Do you think Shakira promotes a healthy role model for being in love?
Talk about how women are portrayed in popular media. Shakira sometimes discusses situations that make women appear to be victimized, like when a jealous boyfriend spies on her. Do you think women should get more respect in the media? Does it change how you view women and yourself when you hear lyrics that degrade them?
Discuss the realities of sex. Shakira says she's not "a waiter," meaning she doesn't want to wait to have a physical relationship with someone. Do you think this is the right message to send to kids? Do you think people sometimes jump into sexual relationships too soon and wind up getting hurt? What does the media not show you about the consequences of these decisions?