1 Sep 2013

Pop music encourages young to indulge in alcoholic drinks, sex

Four brands of spirits, including Grey Goose vodka, made up more than half of specific references to labelsRihanna swigging straight from a bottle of wine
Pop songs which refer to alcohol brands could be encouraging young people to binge drink and have sex, experts have warned.
Almost a quarter of chart music lyrics over a three-year period mentioned booze, analysts said.

Four brands of spirits – Patron tequila, Hennessy cognac, Grey Goose vodka, and Jack Daniel’s whiskey – made up more than half of specific references to labels.

The songs almost always showed alcohol as a good thing. More than one in ten, or 16 per cent, linked getting drunk with sex.

Rihanna’s song Cheers states: ‘I drink to that/ Oh let the Jameson sink in’.

In Bittersweet, Kanye West raps: ‘This relationship it even got me back to drinkin’/ Now this Hennessy it’s going to be the death of me’.

Rap, hip hop and R&B were most likely to mention booze, at 38 per cent, then country music at 22 per cent and pop at 15 per cent.

In How We Do, British pop star Rita Ora sings: ‘You look so sweet while you’re dreaming/ Holding your bottle of Tanqueray’, while in his song Jack Daniels, country idol Eric Church says: ‘I’ve thrown a punch or two . . . But Jack Daniel’s kicked my ass again last night.’

US experts analysed the 720 top songs of 2009, 2010 and 2011 as ranked by Billboard Magazine. In all, 167 mentioned alcohol and 46 songs mentioned brands.

Professor Michael Siegel, of  Boston University, said: ‘Many songs glamorise underage drinking and excessive alcohol consumption and their association with sex and partying.’

He said: 'A small number of alcohol brands and beverages appear to make frequent appearances in popular music.

'If these exposures are found to influence youth drinking behavior, then further public health efforts must be focused on youth exposure to alcohol portrayals in popular music.'

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