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Thread: Pop songs, childhood influence

  1. #1
    IRL is not real Array Cimarron's Avatar
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    Aug 2008
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    Default Pop songs, childhood influence

    Bing Crosby's 1944 song "Swingin' on a Star" put a positive light on staying in school and working hard to reach your dreams. Such lyrics would be out of place among the pop songs today. This brings up plenty of questions about what influence songs have on young listeners, and how what is popular shapes their attitude, about the merits and drawbacks of such things, etc. Well, I don't have the energy to develop a question, but here's the song:
    [youtube=]Swingin' on a Star[/youtube]
    You can't spell "justice" without ISTJ.

  2. #2
    Emerging Array Tallulah's Avatar
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    Feb 2008


    Well, there are always a bunch of feel-good "live life to the fullest, climb every mountain, be your own hero, the children our are future, I hope you dance" type songs out there at any given time. But you're right, you don't find many that outright say not to be lazy and to get an education.
    Something Witty

  3. #3
    loopy Array Ulaes's Avatar
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    Jan 2009


    "romance" songs have also taken a plunge

  4. #4
    Senior Member Array Wade Wilson's Avatar
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    Oct 2008


    When I was three years old, I used to listen to a record of the muppets singing all these classic songs as I went to sleep. Gonzo sang "My Way".

    I went to sleep every night knowing I could die at any moment.

    It was a pretty big influence on my childhood.

    I know a girl, she's one of a kind
    But the poor little thing, she's going out of her mind
    There's something you forgot - there's a reason why she's lost
    Cos baby she don't want to be found

  5. #5
    half mystic, half skeksis Array jenocyde's Avatar
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    Jan 2009


    "Free to Be You and Me" by Marlo Thomas and Friends.
    It was an album that taught against gender stereotypes.

    When I was itty bitty, I used to pretend to be Diana Ross in the mirror singing "When We Grow Up".

    I think I wore the grooves out on that record when I was a kid. That, and "Disco Duck"

    When we grow up, will I be pretty?
    Will you be big and strong?
    Will I wear dresses that show off my knees?
    Will you wear trousers twice as long?
    Well, I don't care if I'm pretty at all.
    And I don't care if you never get tall.
    I like what I look like, and you're nice small.
    We don't have to change at all.

    When we grow up, will I be a lady?
    Will you be an engineer?
    Will I have to wear things like perfume and gloves?
    I can still pull the whistle while you steer.
    Well, I don't care if I'm pretty at all.
    And I don't care if you never get tall.
    I like what I look like, and you're nice small.
    We don't have to change at all.

    When I grow up, I'm gonna be happy and do what I like to do,
    Like making noise and making faces and making friends like you.
    And when we grow up, do you think we'll see
    That I'm still like you and you're still like me?
    I might be pretty; you might grow tall.
    But we don't have to change at all.

    (I don't want to change, see, 'cause I still want to be your friend, forever and ever and ever and ever and ever.)

  6. #6


    This is very similar to thoughts I had when watching old christmas specials, some of which I haven't seen in years. It got me thinking about what makes for a great story. Namely of course it gives expression to universal ideals that can speak across generations. A good analogy would be to that of a water spring: constant but yet always fresh.

    In regards to Christmas, I can't think of no better example than the song "Even a miracle needs a hand":

    Here you have a great truth that's been pondered over by countless theologians and philosophers explained in a simple, not to mention entertaining, form that even a young child can understand!

    Love longs often have great endurance because at some point in our lives, we've all felt both the joy and pain of it. Love is indeed a universal and deeply human thing.

    Nowadays, our focus is always on the short-term and the limited. We don't grasp the concept of the long-term much less the universal. And thus that's a major reason why music and culture in general has stagnated to an intolerable degree.

    We need to rediscover these forgotten truths if we wish to continue creating really great music, as opposed to kitsch that has a nice beat to it.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Array TenebrousReflection's Avatar
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    Sep 2007
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    A lot of songs I listened to as a kid probably had some influence on me, but Freewill by Rush is one that sticks out in my memories as inspiring me to think for myself and reach my own conclusions about things at a fairly eary age (early gradeschool years). I'm not sure if the song simply ignited a spark that was already there due to type or not, but I do see it as a song with a good positive message to encourage people to think. At that age, most of the lyrics of the song would not have sunk in, but the core concept of the song is there in the chorus and the specifc lines "if you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice" and "I will choose freewill" are the parts of it I think was inspirational to me back then.

    [YOUTUBE=""]Rush - Freewill[/YOUTUBE]

    There are those who think that life has nothing left to chance
    A host of holy horrors to direct our aimless dance

    A planet of play things
    We dance on the strings
    Of powers we cannot perceive
    'The stars aren't aligned
    Or the gods are malign...'
    Blame is better to give than receive

    You can choose a ready guide in some celestial voice
    If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice
    You can choose from phantom fears and kindness that can kill
    I will choose a path that's clear
    I will choose freewill

    There are those who think
    That they were dealt a losing hand
    The cards were stacked against them
    They weren't born in Lotusland

    Allways preordained
    A prisoner in chains
    A victim of venomous fate
    Kicked in the face
    You can't pray for a place
    In heaven's unearthly estate

    Each of us
    A cell of awareness
    Imperfect and incomplete
    Genetic blends
    With uncertain ends
    On a fortune hunt that's far too fleet

  8. #8
    veteran attention whore Array Jeffster's Avatar
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    Jun 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peguy View Post
    In regards to Christmas, I can't think of no better example than the song "Even a miracle needs a hand":
    I love that song! And the show it comes from! Twas The Night... and the Charlie Brown Christmas are the only Christmas specials that i truly love.
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  9. #9
    Protocol Droid Array Athenian200's Avatar
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    Jul 2007


    I think this one also sort of promotes avoiding laziness and following your dreams.

    [YOUTUBE=""]Wolfsheim - Leave no deed undone[/YOUTUBE]

    My personal (slightly spooky) interpretation is that the lyrics are from the perspective of Death, trying to give people advice about how to better live their lives.

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