When she isn’t writing, Faye is spending time with her family and leading a covert double life as an attorney. All rights reserved. Our households enjoy hip-hop. And you'll never see this message again. Elizabeth’s husband, a former middle-school music teacher, raised eyebrows a few years ago by hitting “reply all” in a parent and friend’s group email discussion on his heated defense of Akon’s lyrics. Faye McCray is an attorney by day and writer all the time. “I Know You Got Soul” (1987), by Eric B. and Rakim. At a time when gangsta rap was ascendant, Arrested Development, a group founded by MC Speech and DJ Headliner, wrote songs about peace, love, and spirituality. “Ham’N’Eggs” (1990), by A Tribe Called Quest. Via complex rhymes, a high school girl proclaims her right to decide what she wants out of a romantic relationship, and life. If you value our work, please disable your ad blocker. Mr. Check out these clean rap songs that are safe to listen to with your kids in the car! If you’re anything like me and you just can’t bring yourself to buy a Kid’s Bop album, here are 25 positive old school and new school hip hop and R&B tracks that are safe to listen to with your kiddies! ( Log Out / Why? Parents and dance instructors are well aware of how impressionable children and young people are – even subtle and subconscious lyrics in a song can have a huge impact on kids. If it’s heavily weighted to the 1980-90s, it’s because the idea is sharing music you love with your kids. We’ve engaged our kids in discussions about the messages in the medium. Not radio-censored versions of “dirty” songs, nor hip-hop songs written for children (brrrr), but instead hip-hop tunes that are classics of the genre, yet clean enough for—gulp—Tipper Gore. They’ll listen when Michael Franti raps, “TV is the reason/why less than 10 percent of our nation reads books daily/why most people think/Central America means Kansas, Socialism means un-American, and Apartheid is a new headache remedy.” The only question is: Are you ready for your kids to become militants? 50 Cent – In Da Club (2003 – Ranked 18). P.Y.T. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. You’ve run out of free articles. (Elizabeth’s mom, who had four daughters between the ages of 10 and 16 at the time, focused all her censorship efforts on one pop album: Prince’s Dirty Mind.) Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. You can find Faye at www.fayemccray.com and on www.weemagine.com, a site she cofounded with her husband to celebrate and inspire kids. So Josh went on a weeks-long quest in search of a playlist’s worth of clean hip-hop. ( Log Out / She is the author of Dani’s Belts, a collection of short stories that follow a young college student turned unlikely heroine of the zombie apocalypse. ( Log Out / During the so-called golden age of hip-hop (let’s call it 1984-93), DJ Eric B. and MC Rakim were regarded as the most talented combo around. Join Slate Plus to continue reading, and you’ll get unlimited access to all our work—and support Slate’s independent journalism. “120 Seconds” (1991), by Freestyle Fellowship. Finding clean hip hop dance songs for kids can pose a great challenge for parents and dance instructors alike. She is also the author of Boyfriend, a novel following a young man as he navigates love and fidelity in college, and I am Loved!, a collection of positive affirmations for kids. Use this list of some of the best clean songs for children. ( Log Out / Your child can learn the dance from 10 of the best teachers in the industry, with clean moves that are current as well as old school classics. Times have changed. Today, most of us are aware that rap and hip-hop are not unique among musical genres in sometimes celebrating sex, drugs, and violence, or denigrating women; and, conversely, that even the most brutal rap song might plausibly be interpreted as a confrontational act of artistic ventriloquism. Here’s one such playlist, in no particular order, complete with talking points. Nas is widely considered to be one of the greatest rappers of all time. View all posts by Faye McCray. A crocodile, a squirrel, and others encourage De La Soul—high school chums Kelvin Mercer (nicknamed Posdnuos), David Jude Jolicoeur (Trugoy), and Vincent Mason (Mase)—to maintain a positive attitude. If you’re anything like me and you just can’t bring yourself to buy a Kid’s Bop album, here are 25 positive old school and new school hip hop and R&B tracks that are safe to listen to with your kiddies! This Grammy-nominated song is a love story about a skateboarder who tells the girl he loves that, “I would marry you/But I’m engaged to these aerials and varials/And I don’t think this board is strong enough to carry two.” What a sexist!