Have you ever gone to a store like Wal-Mart to buy that newest Eve CD, only find out that a word here and a phrase there has been cut out?
Or how about when you go to Kmart and hear chunks of songs cut out on the new Kid Rock CD? There is a lot of annoyance, the warning level's effectiveness, the Internet and even music videos. Let's take a look at why each detail is important.
Why is it annoying?
How annoying is it when someone is telling you a story, and then all of a sudden, they skip the best part, only to leave you aggravated? Some teens buy edited CDs and aren't even aware of what they have just done. Editing takes away from the song. A funny sound of the lead guitar or a few skipped beats usually results in the space of the vulgarity. For some people, this only evokes a severe rage, because they know the word in the awkward music, so why edit the CD?
People also feel, however, that if the lyrical content has to have that little "Parental Advisory" sticker, then the music must not be suitable for children and young teen-agers.
Why, then, is this age group even listening to this kind of music? Many teens around 16-18 have told me that it all depends on the maturity level on the consumer.
Maybe it does, but the younger generations have to grow up fast. This may even have something to do with the music they choose to listen to.
Do parental advisories work?
How many times have you been carded trying to buy a CD with that little "Parental Advisory"? Is the purpose of those little advisories for parents, so they can screen what their children are listening to? Many children under 13 have the CDs with the "explicit content" warning on the cover. Of course, they may actually like the music, but why listen to such vulgarity at an early age?
For the older teens, however, how can this be such a good device? If they are around 17, why should anyone care what they listen to? They are going to be 18 soon, so why control what they listen to? In today's day and age, most 17-year-olds have heard just about everything. As long as they respect who's around them, what's the music going to hurt?
How can children be protected from the harm of music when they know the lyrical content of each song? What is going to stop a younger teen-ager or preteen from going on the Internet and looking up the lyrical content to the edited CD they just bought?
Of course, there are those parental blocks, but there may be ways around the blocks. The child then can find what he or she is looking for. Once the child realizes what the song is about and what the artist is saying, how can these parental advisories be any use? On the Internet, of course, there are some Web sites that are edited, too, but the majority of those sites aren't. Do those edited CDs make any sense now that the Internet can grace us with the knowledge of the vulgarity content of each song?
Yes, you read right. There are edited music videos. Mystikal's "Shake it Fast" was not really "Shake it Fast." I'm actually not allowed to write what it was originally called, but the famous rapper had to change his song, just so VH1 could play the video. Of course, this takes away from the song's original meaning. You have bands like Blink-182 who have silly videos that aren't edited or changed just so they can be played on a specific TV channel.
For those artists who feel they need to change the video, do they do it so children will think they are cool and popular and run out to buy the CD stamped "PARENTAL ADVISORY"? This could mean more money for the artist.
XAshley Fox is a junior at Chaney High School. Besides writing, she enjoys photography and music.