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A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this music.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that there are definitely some mixed messages here. Songs such as "Beautiful" and "Keep on Singin' My Song" are about loving and believing in yourself, and "Can't Hold Us Down" discusses the unfairness of double standards ("The guy gets all the glory the more he can score/while the girl can do the same and yet you call her a whore"), but other tracks such as "Get Mine Get Yours" ("We make love but don't fall in love/We spend time, just enough, so you get yours and I get mine") suggest that commitment-free sex and sexy posturing are the ways to act.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
Christina Aguilera wants to prove to us that she has grown up. In the provocatively titled STRIPPED, she moves away from her bubblegum pop princess image and attempts to capture a more mature audience. She is sometimes successful; in songs such as the haunting and deeply personal \"I'm Okay,\" she shares what it was like to grow up in fear of her abusive father. This song, which she wrote and composed, suggests a depth that many probably never suspected she had. And the message of self-love in the heartfelt \"Beautiful\" is something that fans of all ages can appreciate. Bottom line: Most of the music here is excellent, but you may want to talk with your teens about some of the conflicting messages.
Is it any good?
Unfortunately, Aguilera feels that she needs to do more than sing about her painful past or hidden fears to attract an older crowd -- she seems to think she has to shock them into listening. "Dirrty," the ultra-sexual first single, is the worst song on the CD. Its in-your-face sexuality is just desperate, not erotic. "Get Mine Get Yours" is equally raunchy and uninspired -- plus its glorification of sex without love is at odds with her previous messages of self-worth. You might want to point out to your kids that people who truly feel good about and respect themselves don't feel the need to engage in no-strings sex.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the seemingly contradictory messages: Is it confusing that Aguilera sings about self-acceptance and self-love when she's wearing little more than underwear? Does the sexy image that she has carefully cultivated take away from the positive messages of many of her songs? What about the double standard she sings about?