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Parents' Guide for the latest music

Find out if the albums from Ricky Martin, Backstreet Boys, Missy Elliott, and more are suitable for your kids

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Devil Without a Cause
Artist: Kid Rock
Who: Lewd, blue-eyed Motor City bad boy
Musical style: A rap-metal salad with raunch dressing
Think: Your worst nightmare
Recurrent themes: Kid Rock, partyin’
Typical lyric: ”I’m a freako, call me sick, three foot nine with a ten-foot d—-”
Sex/Violence: Plenty
Language: Warrants the parental-advisory label
What’s good about it: Its release proves the First Amendment is alive and well.
What’s not so good: Kid Rock’s middle finger greets you on the CD.

Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me
Artist: Various
Who: Soundtrack from the swingin’ hit movie
Musical style: Groovy, baby
Think: An ”American Woman” in London
Recurrent themes: Falling in love
Typical lyric: ”If I’m smart then I’ll run away/ But I’m not, so I guess I’ll stay”
Sex/Violence: No shagging here
Language: Nothing to worry about
What’s good about it: Mixing songs from the ’60s and ’90s may help bridge the generation gap.
What’s not so good: The movie itself. Parts of it may be too crude or lewd for youngsters — and after your kids hear Dr. Evil cover Will Smith’s ”Just the Two of Us,” they’ll beg to see it…one million times.

Ricky Martin
Artist: Ricky Martin
Who: Ex-Menudo member with crossover dreams
Musical style: Not-so-spicy Latin pop
Think: Julio Iglesias with attitude
Recurrent themes: Amor
Typical lyric: ”I’ll never be the same/Without you here with me/Cuidado (please be careful)/Con mi corazon”
Sex/Violence: Just some ”bon-bon” shaking
Language: Spanglish
What’s good about it: The lyrics may inspire your kids to become bilingual.
What’s not so good: Martin’s hip gyrations may get your daughters’ mojos working.

Da Real World
Artist: Missy ”Misdemeanor” Elliott
Who: Supa dupa fly rap diva
Musical style: Hot hip-hop
Think: The dare-to-be-different Madonna of rap
Recurrent themes: The war between men and women
Typical lyric: ”We made love, now you gone, now you don’t want to claim me no more, told your boys, you never knew, you never kissed or held me in your arms”
Sex/Violence: Loaded with sex talk
Language: Explicit
What’s good about it: Elliott is a feminist who can hold her own in a male-dominated world.
What’s not so good: Elliott proudly identifies herself as ”bitch” throughout.

Artist: Backstreet Boys
Who: Role models for ‘N Sync and 98°
Musical style: Bubblegum pop
Think: An ethnically mixed Osmonds
Recurrent themes: The heartbreak of love
Typical lyric: ”Give me one more chance to give my love to you/’Cause no one on this earth loves you like I do”
Sex/Violence: None
Language: Squeaky-clean
What’s good about it: The Boys’ success proves it’s okay for males to show their softer side.
What’s not so good: The bland, innocent vision of romance may set up unrealistic expectations for your daughters.