I’ve mostly been posting about YA books here, but I also love a lot of music targeted at tweens. I’ve received a fair amount of flak for my iPod full of Disney Channel stars, but I don’t even care. Tween music is where it’s at, you guys! Well–some of it, anyway. I’ve decided to post a song here every Monday, a hand-picked tween pop hit from me to you. The fact is, the best tween music makes me happy! Really happy! It will probably make you happy too!
Tween pop is primarily differentiated from mainstream pop in two main ways, as far as I can tell. First: age of the artist. Tween pop is generally sung by teens, for tweens. (Mainstream pop is sung by teens and twentysomethings, for teens and adults.) Second: content. Tween pop is generally free of any overtly sexual content and naughty language.
Tween pop songs generally come in three different flavors: love ballads, “partying with your friends” dance music, and “Be Yourself” self-esteem boosters. (Note: “breakup songs” can be subcategories of all three of these types!) I generally steer clear of the ballads, for they are generally too saccharine and slow for any non-tween to tolerate. (Although I did once put “You Are the Music in Me” from High School Musical 2 on a mix CD for my now-ex-boyfriend. I’m pretty sure that’s not the reason we broke up, though.) Party songs and Be Yourself songs, though, are generally awesome for working out, dancing, or just perking yourself up.
I’m starting off Music Mondays with a song by my current favorite tween pop singer, Selena Gomez. At the moment she may be best known as Justin Bieber’s death threat-receiving girlfriend, but she’s definitely a star in her own right. I have all her albums and they are great. Also, Wizards of Waverly Place, the Disney Channel show that started her tween idol career, is actually pretty funny. She played Beezus in the recent Ramona and Beezus movie (which I actually haven’t seen, so I can’t comment on its quality.) Apparently, she’s also slated to star as Hannah in the movie of Jay Asher’s lovely YA novel Thirteen Reasons Why, which I look forward to seeing.
I dare you to listen to this song, “Who Says,” without feeling at least a little bit better about your day.
Na na na na na na!
There’s also a Spanish-language version, “Dices.”
PS: For the record, Selena is 19, so you don’t have to feel too sketchy about thinking she’s super hot. Just saying.