22 great hip-hop tracks you can play around your kids
This hip-hop loving dad compiled a list of good, clean tracks that embody the spirit of hip-hop and consciousness... and are suitable for his preschool daughters' little ears.
(Youtube)
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I’ve always loved hip-hop. I can’t quite remember the first artist that got me switched on to it. I’d love to say it was Tribe Called Quest or Boogie Down Productions when I was 15.  But it wasn’t.

I remember hearing DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince’s Girls Of The World and Parents Just Don’t Understand on the radio and thinking... this is great! I distinctly remember knowing all the words to Funky Cold Medina, asking my mom to make me Hammer pants and being able to rap along with the KLF, Vanilla Ice and to almost every song on Snap!’s World Power album.

When I was 17, I was hooked on In Living Color. I knew the names of all the Wayans Brothers, I saw Jim Carey rip off Vanilla Ice and drooled over Jenny when she was still just a Fly Girl from the Block. I thought I was the only kid rocking Chuck Taylors and LAs Cross Colours (Post Hip-Hop Nation Academic Hard Wear) in the burbs.

In 1993 things got a little more conscious. Arrested Development was at the Grammys, and sampled horns emanated through Guru’s Jazzmataz and the Digable Planets. It was a done deal. I was sold to the 4 elements of hip-hop: rap, turntabalism, breakdancing and graffiti. By this time, hip-hop was well and truly a part of who I was and what I believed the world was in serious need of... consciousness.

Fast forward to 2015. I’ve just turned 40 and I have two beautiful daughters, aged 2 and 5. How do I share my love of this incredible cultural movement with them? In an age where kids are bombarded with images of sex and violence through pop culture at a ridiculously young age, and in a country where violence against women is endemic and where the rap game takes centre stage to all these things, with a good helping of materialism thrown in for size?

Hip-hop isn't all about gangstas and b*tches. Well, at least not the hip-hop I grew up to. I’m sure there will come a time for them to discover NWA, Biggie, Tupac, Dre, Slim and Lamar, and marvel at their lyrical prowess and ability to turn a phrase… but not yet.

So with that in mind, and with help from Paul Waxon, I have jotted down some tracks to add to the Hip-Hop for Kids list.

I would happily bump these tracks in the car with my girls on the way to pre-school. You might not agree, or hopefully, you might have some of your own tracks to contribute to this list:

Kid-friendly hip-hop tracks:

*Note: watching videos eat a lot of mobile data. We suggest you watch this somewhere where you have access to wi-fi.

Arrested Development - Mr Wendal

Click here for the lyrics

Watch the video:

Beastie Boys - Intergalactic

Click here for the lyrics 
Watch the video:

Tribe Called Quest - Can I Kick It?

Click here for the lyrics 
Watch the video

Lauren Hill - Everything is Everything

Click here for the lyrics 
Watch the video


Mac Lethal - Incredible Mozart Rap

Watch the video


The Simpsons - Deep Deep Trouble

Click here for the lyrics 
Watch the video

Freestyle Fellowship - 120 Seconds 

Click here for the lyrics 
Watch the video

Digable planets - Where I’m From

Click here for the lyrics 
Watch the video

Lupe Fiasco - Kick Push 

Click here for the lyrics 
Watch the video

Nas - Bridging the Gap

Click here for the lyrics 
Watch the video

De La Soul - Tread Water

Click here for the lyrics 
Listen here: 

De La Soul - Magic Number

Click here for the lyrics 
Listen here

KRS One - Step Into a World (Rapture’s Delight)

Click here for the lyrics 
Watch the video

Fatboys - Stick Em

Click here for the lyrics 
Watch the video


If you can find a clean version:

Blackalicious - Alphabet Aerobics

Click here for the lyrics 
Watch the video

Fugees - Rumble in the Jungle

Click here for the lyrics 
Watch the video

Tribe Called Quest - Jazz (We’ve Got)

Click here for the lyrics 
Watch the video


For when they’re a little older:

MIA - Boyz

Click here for the lyrics 
Watch the video

Rye Rye ft MIA - Sunshine

Click here for the lyrics 
Watch the video

NAS - I Can

Click here for the lyrics 
Watch the video

Tupac - Keep Ya Head Up

Click here for the lyrics 
Watch the video

Queen Latifah - UNITY

Click here for the lyrics 
Watch the video: 

Can you add anything to our list? What do you think about introducing hip-hop to your children? Please send your comments to chatback@parent24.com.

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