When I was a child, my mum and dad would play Dean Martin in the car on road trips. That’s right Dean Martin, the man who sings…
”When the moon hits your eye like a biga pizza pie its amore….”
perhaps it was the only cassette tape they owned, as I don’t know what other reason there could be to subject us to this torturous crooning, over and over again.
I remember my friends drawing pictures of the ‘KISS’ logo and talking about the songs they liked and listened to on the radio. There was never much I could contribute to the conversation with my extensive knowledge of Dean Martin lyrics.
Now that my children have outgrown the wiggles Hi-5, The Fairies and Playschool (thank you god!) I now get to introduce them to some real music. I started off by playing compilation CDs I’d made when NAPSTER first emerged, before people realized it was illegal and immoral that is…When the girls got their iPods, I’d pre-loaded them with a selection of my favorite 80’s music. And then I heard them happily singing ‘Livin on a prayer’ and I thought “…O’no!! Bon Jovi is the new Dean Martin”. I’m doing to my kids, just what my parents did to me!!!
So, I tried to turn on the TV music channels for them to watch. As a teenager, I vividly remember late nights and early mornings watching rage. No Saturday morning would be complete without watching my fill of ‘Video Hits’. But OMG! Have you seen what music video’s are like now!! There are gangsters, often topless, adorned with gold, jewels, expensive cars, mansions and pools. To complete their collection of possessions, they are then surrounded by a harem of nearly naked gyrating women! Some of the videos must come close to porn. I could never leave that on the TV and have my 8 and 7 year old girls see images like these. This is not how women should be treated. I don’t ever want them to think this is the correct way to behave!
I have since turned to radio. We spend a lot of time in the car, so that is where we listen to the music. It has taken me some time but I have adapted to some of the songs and the kids each have their favorites. I am sometimes astounded listening to the kids sing because they have absorbed much more of the lyrics than I have.…although I wonder at the political correctness of the kids belting out Katy Perry’s TGIF lyrics abut a menage a trois and I feel the compulsion to turn off the song that goes “…she sounds like sex on the radio….”
When the DJs or radio show hosts also get into the action, I just have to turn the radio off all together and listen to the CD of Hannah Montana for the 5263574th time. But this is preferable to what is said on the radio. Kyle Sandilands, a high profile radio host, recreantly delivered this outburst about a female journalist who criticised his new TV show. He said on air…
“You’re a piece of shit. This low thing, Alison Stephenson, deputy editor of news.com.au online. You’re supposed to be impartial, you little troll…. You’re a bullshit artist, girl. You should be fired from your job… Watch your mouth or I’ll hunt you down.”
He also called The journalist a “fat bitter thing” and attacked her hairstyle and “small titties”
I am very glad we were not listening to the radio at this time, but we easily could have been. I have also heard this man say many, many, mean, derogatory, crass, sexually explicit and misogynistic things. Usually I can get my fingers on the button before my little ‘sponges with ears’ pick the whole thing up.
It seems to me that the pervasive culture of the music industry is actually very sexual and even misogynistic. If people in the industry believe it is appropriate to say things like this about women, include things like this in their music and their videos, than parents and teachers face an uphill battle to teach children respect and equality.
I feel very proud that some of the people I follow on Twitter have been instrumental in getting this Kyle Sandilans story into the general media They have even succeeded in the major sponsors of the radio show pulling their adds. Effective immediately. You’ve just got to love twitter for giving people a voice and people power!!
As for my grand plan to make sure the girls are up to date with the current music trends…..Perhaps I should go and borrow my Mum’s Dean Martin Cassette instead!!