Episode 7: Explicit lyrics in pop music

Nov 10, 2014


In this episode of Media Inside Out we’ll look at explicit lyrics in pop music from all angles. Have you noticed how often popular music today contains two versions? An explicit version, usually with cursing and sexual content. And a clean version where those words are omitted, or edited out, leaving a weird split-second silence in the track. As if to say “hey, did you know there’s another version of this song with bad lyrics that we just kind of edited out, but you can still tell?” Who is held accountable then? Record companies for marketing songs with explicit lyrics to kids? Artists for writing 2 versions of songs so kids know there’s a clean version and a version with explicit lyrics? Parents for not monitoring what their kids listen to? And what about iTunes? What’s to stop a ten year old from downloading any version they want? No cashier to stop them. No “parental warning” label. We’ll discuss what’s been done– and ideas for what should be considered.


Kathy O’Connell, host of the WXPN radio program Kid’s Corner


Gabe Romano, a member of the kid’s indie music band, The Plants


Phil Nicolo, an award-winning music producer and Adjunct Professor at Temple University


DJ Bonics, hip hop DJ for Wiz Khalifa and radio DJ at Wired 96.5 FM