Young pop stars, rock stars and rappers have a history of defying adults. If your grownups like what you’re listening to, then what you’re listening to is boring. Every generation has to find the artists or songs that piss their parents off, it’s part of growing up. It’s something that spans every generation and every genre of music, even before the existence of MTV. Once music videos came along, artists were able to show you exactly how adult-defying their music was and ad visuals to the noise that already upset grown folks. The most common way to show it was to include an intro that featured some curmudgeonly adult shaking their fists and yelling at young people. Whatever the case, it’s an attitude and an angle that’s losing popularity, not because parents are starting to understand, but because young people don’t care if their parents hate their tunes. Below are five videos from an era that wanted to piss off adults.
DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince, ‘Parents Just Don’t Understand’
It’s the ultimate anthem for misunderstood youth, but not in a Blink 182, Hot Topic kind of way, more in a mildly amusing catchy pop song sort of way. Also, this video is a great reminder of what a goofball Will Smith used to be.
Twisted Sister, ‘We’re Not Gonna Take It’
One of the original videos featuring an intro where some adult figure yells at a kid who’s just trying to make his rock n’ roll dreams come true. This was made in 1984, long before affordable headphones were around.
Michael Jackson, ‘Black Or White’
The song’s subject matter isn’t anti-adult, but the hilariously corny intro featuring Macaulay Culkin and George Wendt is what puts this on the list. You can always tell when Macaulay is about to do something deviant because he looks at the camera and wiggles his eyebrows. Unfortunately, this video doesn’t feature Michael Jackson, or anyone else, getting caught up in an elaborate, human-sized, Rube Goldberg trap like in “Home Alone.”
Cyndi Lauper, ‘Girls Just Want To Have Fun’
It’s the anthem for ladies holding their high heels in their hands and dancing in a circle. Though, if Cyndi Lauper was a little more honest, she would’ve called the song, “Girls Just Want You To Pay Attention To Them While You’re Trying To Have Fun.”
My Chemical Romance, ‘Teenagers’
It’s a sarcastic song in which My Chemical Romance takes a passive but loving dig at their own fan-base, while also making fun of the people who are actually afraid of teenagers: Adults.