In the midst of a club, whippin’ your hair back and forth real good to Willow Smith pre-pubescent vocals, I wonder if you have ever really genuinely considered the fact that her vocals were pre-pubescent? Now I mean really mulled over the fact that you are sensually whipping your weave/fro/braids in a club to a 9 year old’s songs? I have. And it made me stop-mid whip and consider how awkward and somewhat wrong it is to booty pop to a little girl who probably still has a few more milk teeth to lose.
Now don’t get me wrong. I think it’s great to recognise the talent of a child- and of course it’s fantastic to celebrate it. However this talent should grow organically and mature as they grow older. Children shouldn’t be forced to grow up just because they’re put in an adult sphere all of a sudden. Whether you wrap a child in cotton-wool or not, the fact is that they are suddenly submerged in a world where they are judged solely on what they put out superficially to the world. They’re based on appearance and and the talent they put on display-the talent, which is more often than not, that moulded and managed by people who “know best. ” (who incidentally are also making a pretty penny from their child protegé).
Dangerously, people will begin to use this as leeway to judge on the child’s personality, and boom! There goes the transformation from cute little tween pop star to an anxiety-ridden adolescent, terribly reliant on what people think of them.
Now cast your mind back to your teen years ( um..if you’re a teen..reflect on yourself..go ahead. It’s a fun exercise). Angst, spots, self-consciousness and everything being terribly unfair. I think we can all agree it’s a pretty tough time. You’re worrying about what the object of your affections thinks of you, what your friends think of you, and whether your new dress makes your butt look flat. It is stressful. For this mind-still developing and growing, a wordly pressure that is focused on you and your talent- an unwarranted outside intrusion-can be dangerous. Toxic even. I mean just look our beloved MJ. He skyrocketed to fame at the age of 10, and then proceeded to spend most of his adulthood trying to capture a lost childhood. His ranch wasn’t called “Neverland” (the mythical land in J.M Barrie’s novel, “Peter Pan” where childeren never grow up) by coincidence. Children lose something. Inevitably.
The attention they get can be a heady potion to swallow for an adult, let alone a child still growing up. I’m definitely an advocate for recognising the potential in a child and moulding it and nuturing it to maturation- however, this talent should be allowed to develop as the child grows;till they are of a reasonable age to be able to somewhat handle the attention it garners. The talent isn’t running anywhere. Let the kid be a kid.
My other problem I have (I have quite a few of them) is subject matter. Check this little guy for example..
So this boy is essentially a foetus, and he’s singing about “Television love?” How he wants to be like Bey and Jay and Khloe and Lamar (which by the way is far too inappropriate for a boy just potty trained to be watching.) ? Granted, it’s kind of cute in a puppy love way, but I still find it weird that a boy whose voice hasn’t even broken yet is singing about romantic love. It is creepy. I mean if “love” is the only subject matter the producers could think of as musical inspiration then fair enough (although that wouldn’t make them very good at what they do. But that besides the point.) but it isn’t necessary that they make a pre-adolescent sing about it.
All I am saying, is that introducing a child to romantic love that early, can lead to premature sexualisation and consequent in teen pregnancies. I am sure I sound like a militant High School health ed teacher, speaking on the same train as “Have sex and you will get chlamydia. And die.” …but I would like to think that my point is less severe and more of a logical conclusion. Introduce them to romance early, then they will inevitably be introduced to romantic physicality early- at a point where they are physically, mentally and emotionally able to handle it. When that happens within their progression to adulthood, it can make for a royally screwed up grown up with intimacy issues that are spending all the hard earned pennies they made as a child on therapy. Am I forseeing a drastic outcome? Perhaps. But it’s not a totally unlikely one. Drew Barrymore was exposed to stardom as soon as she tap-danced (probably) out of the womb, and she is a key example of what growing up too early can do to a child. Marujana and Cocaine addict at 12, and rehab by 13. Of course this is all subject to how stringent the parents are at keeping children grounded, but there is always this increased risk of children becoming misguided.
However, reverting back to subject matter. Let’s take a quick look at the cutely named “OMG Girlz” ( Funnily enough the “OMG” stands for “Offically MissGuided”. You can’t make this kind of thing up. The “z” is for added edge of course.)
Well. At least they’re not talking about love. Only about materialism, vanity, and perpetuating the fact that society whores itself out to whatever a bunch of famous people deem worthy to be worn to gain sartorial acceptance. “What kind of chick you know wear Louis from head to toe? I”m Incredible”, a girl in brightly coloured hair brashly queries. Basing your worth on the clothes on your back? Profound. Such sentiments are sure not to instigate unnecessary feelings of inadequacy from 12-16 year old girls, whose parents-unfair opressors that they are- choose not to buy their children “Louis from head to toe.”
That was sarcasm by the way.
I just feel that these baby popstars maybe need to step back, do their homework, work on their craft have fun being children and maybe come back when they’re 16-18. However in terms of the boyband “Mindless Behaviour” (shown below).. preferably 18. Ahem.