Thr33 Ringz

Common Sense Media says

Synthed-up sound with plenty of racy lyrics.

Age(i)

NOT FOR KIDS

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Misogyny and oversexed lyrics run rampant throughout the album. "Take a Ride" also discusses joyriding in a stolen car.

Violence
Not applicable
Sex

Many of the songs are about propositioning women at clubs for sex. The skit "Take a Ride" explicitly discusses having sex with a woman who has multiple names tattooed on her behind. In "It Ain't Me," T-Pain sings with Akon and T.I. about women who would like to get their money. The rappers warn women that if you want them to buy you things, you need to have sex with them first. "Get you whatever you like, I could / But all I be givin' you tonight is just wood." "Long Lap Dance Song" needs no further explaining.

Language

"Welcome to Thr33 Ringz" is packed with profanities like "F--k that motherf----r, s--t." The expletives continue throughout the album, and on opening track "Ringleader Man," T-Pain explains why: "I'm trying to stop cursing, but I dont give a f--k."

Consumerism

T-Pain brags a lot about the "bling" he owns, his cars, and his money. "Can't Believe It" is a song about lavishing gifts such as a "log cabin in Aspen, expensive paintings ... a mansion somewhere in Wisconsin" on an attractive woman.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

There are a few references to smoking marijuana, and most songs have some lyrics about drinking at clubs.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that although this album has a circus theme, it's definitely not kid friendly; this is a gritty, sexually infused performance. Although somewhat toned down from his previous releases, T-Pain's common topics are the same: drinking, drugging, and clubbing. Women are seen as either sexual prizes or manipulative seducers. Expletives are scattered throughout the songs, but the album's numerous skits contain the most profanity and iffy content. But the theme of most concern is T-Pain's single-minded connection between women and money. On the album, women are after money, men use money to get sex, and T-Pain discusses giving strippers dollar bills. The message that comes across is that women are commodities to be bought, traded, and sold.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Apparently T-Pain has been hearing a lot of people in today's music scene calling him a leader, and the rapper/singer has fully embraced that label on his latest album -- THR33 RINGZ -- deeming himself a "ringleader" of the industry. The album takes the circus theme and runs with it: From the vintage sideshow cover art to songs like "Ringleader Man" and "Welcome to Thr33 Ringz," circus imagery abounds. That said, the majority of the songs cover topics such as hitting on women, clubbing, and hitting on more women.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

With his gangster sensibilities -- drinking, hustling, and objectifying women -- T-Pain is an R&B singer for anyone too cool to listen to real harmonies. But his reliance on electronic production and vocoder sounds calls into question his actual singing ability: Can he actually carry a tune unplugged? There's no denying that the electro-soul on the album has its own funk appeal, but the voice altering becomes monotonous at a certain point. T-Pain's "ringleader" character is somewhat clever, but that also gets old after several tracks. As does his constant bragging.

T-Pain is at his best when he sticks to what made him famous: lush club music that's easy to dance to. At least there are plenty of these tracks to groove to, from "Freeze" (which features Chris Brown, who can actually sing without electronic assistance) to "It Ain't Me" and "Can't Believe It." Although it's questionable whether T-Pain is the ringmaster of the record industry, there's little doubt that he's the ringleader of his own electronic productions.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about how club music like this impacts women. Gangsta rap that objectifies women can be easy to dismiss when it's full of thumping beats and violent images. But what about upbeat music like T-Pain's that's played in clubs and at parties? Does the pop tone make these lyrics any more socially acceptable?

Music details

Artist:T-Pain
Release date:November 11, 2008
Label:Jive Records
Genre:Hip-hop
Parental advisory:Yes
Edited version available:Yes

This review of Thr33 Ringz was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

Find out more

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

About our buy links

When you use our links to make a purchase, Common Sense Media earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes. As a nonprofit organization, these funds help us continue providing independent, ad-free services for educators, families, and kids while the price you pay remains the same. Thank you for your support.
Read more

See more about how we rate and review.

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Adult Written byWALKSH29 November 14, 2008
AGE
17
QUALITY
 

MISS SHANECE AND THE THREE RINGS

WELL I LIKE THE SONG
Teen, 13 years old Written byBestPicture1996 April 26, 2009
AGE
14
QUALITY
 

I got the edited version

so I didn't get all of the explitives. But I still thought regardless it was a real good album.
Teen, 13 years old Written byjakek6 August 24, 2009
AGE
14
QUALITY
 

Keep away 12 and under.

This album has its share of explicit music. A lot of the songs have sexual behavior in them. And some songs have a small amount of language. But there are some songs that have great messages to them. The ones that are the most concerning are Take A Ride, Freeze, Long Lap Dance, etc. Anything with the explicit mark next to one of these songs on this album you should stay away from.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Great messages

Poll

Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?

Essential School Tools