Pop Music Sings of Drinking without the Consequences

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teen drivingWhat does Ke$ha brush her teeth with in the morning? What brand of liquor does LMFAO like? What alcohol brand name does Snoop Dogg drop in his song “I Drink I Smoke”?

If you know the answer to any of these questions, or if your child does, listen up. A recent study published last month, referenced in NPR and USA Today, found a correlation between exposure to music containing alcohol brand references and alcohol-related behaviors among adolescents. It stated that adolescents who like music that references alcohol are three times as likely to drink and twice as likely to binge than those who do not like these songs. In fact, those who enjoyed this kind of music the most were the most likely to drink and binge. And if you could recall the exact brand names that were dropped in songs like the ones mentioned above? Well, you topped them all when it comes to an inclination to drink.

Dr. Brian Primack, an associate professor of medicine at the University of Pittsburgh and the lead author of the study, pointed out that the media’s portrayal of drinking is often one-sided, failing to show the negative side effects—like the hangovers and addiction, not to mention trouble with the law.

Another recent study on alcohol brand references in popular music found that about 25 percent of the Top 40 hits from 2009–2011 referenced alcohol. Most of these references were in association with partying, and they “…often glamorized partying and underage drinking.” It states, “It therefore seems clear that popular music is largely portraying alcohol use as a fun part of youth lifestyle that is free of consequences.”

Pull up any one of the music videos for the songs above, and you’ll see this carefree attitude. According to the videos, life is one big party and the more “crunk” you get, the better.

The image of carefree, invincible youth, in reality, is neither of those things, and one of the most common consequences for such behavior comes on the road home.

If you are a parent of a teen who listens to songs like these, you might consider taking the time to help them establish responsible behaviors and to warn them of the dangers of drinking and driving. Let them know that a DWI can come with serious consequences, contrary to what pop music culture might have them believe.

For those who are legally allowed to drink, make sure you have made arrangements for a designated driver. If you have been charged with a DWI in or near New Orleans, Louisiana, contact an experienced DWI attorney right away.

Photo Credit: State Farm via Compfight cc

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By George Vourvoulias

George is a founding member and managing member of Harmon, Smith & Vourvoulias L.L.C., a New Orleans law firm. George concentrates his practice in maritime personal injury, construction litigation, personal injury, workers' compensation, medical malpractice, and DUI defense. George Vourvoulias's Google+ Profile