Since the first album came out in 2001, Kidz Bop has been a phenomenon. The franchise’s staple of having children sing clean versions of popular songs has resonated with parents wanting to listen to music without worrying about their children hearing innuendos or curse words. This has led to involvement with brands like the Hard Rock Cafe and Legoland, in addition to surprising decades-long cultural relevance.
The level of success that this franchise has acquired naturally begs the question of where they might go next. While the safe bet is on rebranding the latest hits to be more kid-friendly, contemplating the brand’s history, its impact on our culture, and future prospects reveals a new direction: re-recording classic songs so that all of music history will be available for parents of young children. This was done to a lesser extent during previous offshoot albums, but the next one will be the magnum opus of the series, shaking the modern world to its core.
Similar to other franchises, let’s speculate about it in advance in order to raise our hopes before they’re inevitably surpassed by the product.
1. Secular Chanting
Gregorian chanting helped to define the devotion that medieval European monasteries felt towards their religion and, alongside other religions’ songs of praise, it is viewed as one of the most passionate ways for people to express their passion for their god. However, in our current society, this is too religious and sends a message to children that a certain belief system is better than another. Thus, I believe that the Kidz Bop: New Wave album will begin with a song that will unite all people under the world beneath the banner of tolerating each other whilst respecting the ethnic culture of others. This will undoubtedly result in a harmonious humming where every religion will be mentioned at irregular intervals.
2. Beethoven’s 5th Symphony
An orchestral masterpiece which was written during the height of one of humanity’s greatest musical minds is the definitive follow-up to Kidz Bop’s anthem for our future. This piece will also mark a transition for the franchise by providing the first orchestral track in its history. Of course, all of the musicians must be kids or it might include a few notes that aren’t appropriate for the ears of children. This expansion into a new music genre could lead to numerous different directions that the franchise can go such as Kidz Bop Opera or Kidz Bop Jazz. The possibilities are endless.
3. “Dream a Little Dream of Me,” Louis Armstrong
Speaking of jazz, a new rendition of one of Louis Armstrong’s seminal works would help to revitalize the genre and provide a convenient reason for parents to give their children a history lesson on the importance of jazz in the American music industry. The song’s message about having dreams about other people may be problematic for young children, so obviously they would have to change the whole meaning of the piece in order to make it palatable. The main problem is finding a child singer who has a deep-enough voice in order to truly pull off the vocals for this song. The good news is that Kidz Bop has always defiled or degraded beloved songs of our culture, so it’s safe to have faith that they will once again knock it out of the park.
4. “Landslide,” Fleetwood Mac
Kidz Bop has yet to address the problem of breakups in their albums, so this would allow them to break thematic ground and provide helpful advice for children going through similar situations. Obviously in our current era of online dating and high divorce rates, learning early on about how to deal with rejection is a job for this trusted cultural touchstone. Another set of beautiful vocals dominate this song, showcasing the upcoming talent of the next generation.
5. “We Shall Overcome,” Zilphia Horton
Anthems have enabled political movements to maintain morale throughout the harshest of their struggles and define their resolve in the face of persistent opposition. The main place that children should be introduced to this historically significant piece is through a series defined by its emphasis on pop songs. Hopefully, this will inspire political activism within the youth and bring about a better future for our troubled modern society.
6. “Sound of Silence,” Simon and Garfunkel
We rarely get silence nowadays. This will help kids know what the sound is.
7. “Greystone Chapel,” Johnny Cash
For the closer, Kidz Bop should take a note from Johnny Cash and perform their album’s final track in a juvenile center. While this may seem irresponsible or heartwarming depending on your viewpoint, it’s sure to cause controversy as most great albums do. A change of setting will also show that Kidz Bop kids are willing to stand up for the disenfranchised, ending its most innovative album on a stance about the messed up state of our prison system.