Songs from the ’90s had a lot of subtle sexual lyrics, or maybe I was just super naive when I was a kid.
I’ve been listening to these songs for two decades now, and it was probably only a few years ago that I actually noticed just how “dirty” some of these songs are.
Let me know if you agree!
1. “Genie in a Bottle” – Christina Aguilera
Not only did I sound like a dying animal while singing this song, but I was also belting out lyrics that had strong sexual connotations. Lyrics like “you gotta rub me the right way,” and “I feel like I’ve been locked up tight, for a century of lonely nights, waiting for someone to release me” were definitely not meant to be sung by a kid.
2. “You Oughta Know” – Alanis Morrisette
I probably shouldn’t have sung this song out loud in front of my parents. They were probably so annoyed by often how I repeated the lyrics “And I’m here, to remind you” from the chorus that they didn’t even bother to tell me to stop saying “Is she perverted like me” and “to be wide open.” Looking back, it really wasn’t right.
3. “2 Become 1” – Spice Girls
Did you even grow up in the 90s if you didn’t listen to the Spice Girls? We had the girl group’s poster all over our walls and we bought every single one of their CDs. Their hit song “2 Become 1” was all over the radio, so every girl was singing “I need some love like I never needed love before (wanna make love to ya baby).” It wasn’t right, but the past is past.
4. “Back That Azz Up” – Juvenile
We knew this song wasn’t completely appropriate, but it was okay to dance and mouth to it because it was cool at the time. I just imagine kids nowadays singing to this song and it makes me cringe. No wonder my mom scolded me for listening to this.
5. “Ain’t 2 Proud 2 Beg” – TLC
If you had an ounce of coolness, you were probably listening to TLC like it was your religion. Back then kids didn’t have much of a dirty mind. When I heard this song, I didn’t think of it to be sexual. I thought she didn’t want to beg to be in a relationship. Clearly, it was more than that. Lyrics like “better get it while it’s hot” and “unmistaken’ urge to be sexin'” definitely didn’t register into memory.
I want to high-five my younger self in the face for being so ignorant when I listened to these next songs…
6. “When The Lights Go Out” – Five
My friends and I would listen to this song behind portables during recess. And of course, we would sing the lyrics. We loved saying “kickin’ it with you, girl” but never knew just how dirty the chorus was. When I was a kid, when the lights went out, it meant time to sleep or turn on your lava lamp.
7. “Bump N’ Grind” – R. Kelly
I was obsessed with R&B growing up. R. Kelly was dominating the scene with albums like 12 Play and R. “Bump N’ Grind” was a song you could groove to and practice those riffs and runs you could never master. This song didn’t seem dirty to me, it just meant you want to dance with someone. But seriously, lyrics like “Girl, you need someone, someone like me to satisfy your every needs” just went a little too far.
8. “No Diggity” – Blackstreet
I still hear kids singing this song today, and I want to sing along with them, but after learning what “Baby got ’em open all over town, strictly biz, she don’t play around” means, I just don’t feel comfortable.
9. “I Wanna Sex You Up” – Color Me Badd
I had to put an obvious one in here, just because. One time this played at one of my school dances, probably by accident, so I convinced myself it’s not that dirty.
10. “Knockin’ da Boots” – H-Town
“Good lovin’, body rockin’, knockin’ boots all night long, yeah.” That one line speaks for itself.
Listen to the full playlist here:
Which song brings back some of your best 90s memories?