'Who will save my girls' musical souls?'

Em Rusciano


Growing up, my top musical heroes were who you would expect.

Prince. Michael Jackson. Madonna.

I pretty much decided that I would model my look on all three as a 10 year old and I haven’t really evolved since.

My daughters are music savvy. I mean it, they’ve truly got the rhythm in them. I know all parents say that but just trust me OK?! They do.

Every Saturday morning I wake to the familiar sound of “Rage ra ra ra Rage ra ra ra Rage Raaaaaaaaage”. The two of them sit there watching film clips, singing along hoping their favourite song is next – as I did when I was their age.

I worry for them, who will be their musical icons? Who will adorn their walls, who will they rush out to buy smash hits for? (Does smash hits still exist?)

They have no interest in One Direction, Justin Bieber or Taylor Swift (I’m a tiny bit proud of that) They form attachments to songs not artists.

Having only ever listened to my music — as I decided very early on The Wiggles and High 5 were messengers of Satan — my kids expect much from their pop music. They can sing along to most of Stevie Wonder’s back catalogue, know The Gossip’s ‘Music for Men’ top to toe and it meant something to them when Whitney Houston died. What I’m getting at is they want more than what Bieber and One Direction have to offer.

However the artists I mentioned above the boys bands are all my taste inflicted on them. Sure I’m helping to shape their musicality but until they discover someone for themselves they won’t get that truly authentic “losing my shit over ________’s new album” experience.

The current day pop landscape is full of technologically suped up wannabes who are out before they’re truly in. Songs have had the soul auto-tuned out and there is so much choice and product flooding the market place it’s hard to know where to start.


What I want more than anything is for my kids to have someone to hook into, really love and obsess over.

I thought GaGa was a serious contender but it all got a bit much for my 5 year old when I had to explain the concept of the alien re-birthing and thirteen minute film clips involving bathtubs and leather.

Chris Brown might have been in with a chance had he not PUNCHED A WOMAN in the face.

Britney Spears. No. Just, no.

Beyonce is talented and probably as close as my girls have got to having someone they admire but she still leaves me a tad cold. I don’t think Beyonce has a real identity, you would’t look at an outfit or hear a song and say “that is so Beyonce” as you would with Prince, Michael or Madonna.

Robyn is front runner at the moment, again a favourite of mine but the girls play her independently of me so that counts for something. Sia has come up the ranks also particularly for my eldest.

Calling all icons, we need you. Us Mothers who are bringing up the next generation of music enthusiasts desperately need someone to believe in. Someone to teach our daughters and sons about the importance of independent thinking, musicianship, killer shoulder pads and shit hot dance moves.


Do any of you have suggestion? Am I missing someone? Who will my kids be playing to their kids?

Em. x

P.S. For those of you wondering about who Robyn is, watch below. She is F*#KING RAD.

Em Rusciano is the host of Mamamia Today on Austereo (which you should be tuning into at 6pm every weekday because it’s ace) and regularly appears on Network Ten’s ’The Project’. You should follow her on Twitter here and take a look at her website here.