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"You're a Jerk" (CD single)
A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this music.
What parents need to know
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What's the story?
YOU'RE A JERK is the debut track from New Boyz -- an L.A.-based rap/hip-hop duo consisting of teens Ben J and Legacy. The Boyz created the tune to correspond with "jerkin'," the street dance craze that combines a little bit of footwork with a lot of knee bends and jerky movements. The song's title is a double entendre, referring to both the dance style as well as the main character: a guy who acts like a player by repeatedly loving and leaving his girl. In the typical style of many rap and hip hop songs, the lyrics in "You're a Jerk" make it seem cool for guys to treat girls disrespectfully: "So I did it, it was good / And I quickly got dressed / She was like, 'Where you goin'?' / And I had nothing to say but sorry that it hurts."
Is it any good?
"You're a Jerk" is undeniably danceable: the drum machine and synth-line make for a strong hook that's great for jerkin' (or plenty of other dance styles). Ben J and Legacy give good performances, delivering their rhymes with a smooth lilt that fits with the track's "I'm a player" message. The downside to this song is the "you're a jerk" refrain that repeats throughout in a high, fast-forward tone that becomes seriously annoying after a few listens.
Talk to your kids about ...
Must music that is especially good for dancing also include risque lyrics in order to appeal to young people? Is a catchy beat enough to draw dancers in, or do tunes also need to offer mature lyrics that describe sex, substances, and other mature content?
For advice on how to manage your kids' music choices, read our tips on Music and Your Kids.
For kids who love dancing
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