kidz bop child, tiktoker, lil nas x

KIDZ BOP/YouTube combat_ostrich/TikTok Lil Nas X/YouTube

‘A little bit of gay erasure’: TikToker calls out Kidz Bop for removing gay references in cover of Lil Nas X’s ‘Montero’

'I wonder why on earth they would have done that?'

 

Stacy Fernandez

Internet Culture

Published Oct 30, 2021   Updated Nov 1, 2021, 10:01 am CDT

Kidz Bop was called out on TikTok for taking references to Lil Nas X’s sexuality out of his hit song “MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name).”

In the initial video, user @combat_ostrich reads through the lyrics of the Kidz Bop version of the song. Throughout the video, they softly roast the word choice used in trying to achieve a clean, kid-friendly version of the song.

“‘Singin’ and dancin’ with your friends,’ I’m pretty sure the original line was cocaine and drinkin’ with your friends. No offense to Kidz Bop but that sounds way more fun,” they say, adding that they understand that kids literally cannot drink.

But it’s not until their follow-up video that the TikToker calls out the erasure of Lil Nas X’s sexuality, in which they respond to a comment asking, “they took out boy?”

“Yes they did, in fact they took out all references that the song is written about a man from the perspective of another man. I wonder why on earth they would have done that?” they say.

The video has more than 69,000 views and a hearty comment section.

Commenters were not here for the lyric replacement.

“Kidz bop has big Republican vibes,” @erictheinch wrote.

“I was today years old when I found out kidzbop engages in a little bit of gay erasure,” @theworstweaboo wrote.

“Why would you take such a sexually charged song and try to make it child friendly to begin with lmao,” user Conor Micheal said.

Several people pointed out that Kidz Bop also took out the “no matter gay, straight or bi” lyric of Lady Gaga’s anthem “Born this Way.”

Others argued that Kidz Bop often censors or changes lyrics arbitrarily. One TikTok user said that he’s listened to a ton of Kidz Bop covers and noticed they make most songs gender neutral. Another viewer pointed out that the word “man” was also replaced in the lyric “be a better man for your brand new girl” in the Kidz Bop version of Olivia Rodrigo’s “Good 4 U.”

The Pudding, a site that creates visual essays with data, did an analysis of Kidz Bop songs and its censorship dating back to lyrics from 2001. They found that in 96 songs that mentioned identity—featuring words like transgender, gay, woman—about half of the lyrics were censored, according to the interactive infographic.

Kidz Bop did not immediately respond to the Daily Dot’s request for comment. @combat_ostrich could not be reached for immediate comment after being contacted via TikTok comment.

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*First Published: Oct 30, 2021, 9:58 am CDT