The Soundtrack of Our Youth: 5 Lackluster Rap Songs From Children's Flicks

What's worse: A movie geared towards kids and teens or the soundtrack to a movie geared towards kids and teens?

It's a tough call because both can be pretty awful and uninspired. Sure, Ferris Bueller's Day Off is great and had an excellent soundtrack but let's not fool ourselves: We all sat through a ton of bad movies filled with bad songs growing up. (Perhaps some of these -- ed.)

At some point in the late '80s and early '90s, someone in a boardroom somewhere decided that the key to selling more soundtracks to America's youth was rap music. More than that, the key to album sales wasn't having rappers on the soundtrack; the key was having people rap about the movie the kids had just watched.

It's not difficult to imagine that there are thousands of kids out there who first discovered rap music via the end credits of whatever Saturday matinee their parents took them to. You might remember "Ninja Rap," but do you remember blasting classics in your cassette player?

Movie: The Addams Family (1991)
Song: MC Hammer, "Addams Groove"

I had a lot of jokes about how Hammer isn't a stranger to youth-centric soundtracks (dude has a song on the Street Fighter soundtrack) but then I uncovered the following fact: "Addams Groove" charted higher than "U Can't Touch This" on the Billboard Hot 100. Seriously America?

On the other hand, "Addams Groove" was also Hammer's last hit single. I know that it's hard to believe that "Pumps and a Bump" didn't do as well as a song about Fester and Wednesday, but it's the truth. Did "Addams Groove" kill Hammer's career? I have no idea, but I do know it's still in his Top 5 most-played songs on Spotify.

Movie: Ghostbusters II (1989)
Song: Bobby Brown, "On Our Own"

Now, you might be thinking that "Addams Groove" was the most popular song to be featured on this list but you would be wrong. That title belongs to "On Our Own" which peaked at No. 2 on the charts and also holds the title of "Best Song Ever Written About the Ghostbusters".

I have nothing against Ray Parker, Jr. mind you but the only thing "Ghostbusters" has on "On Our Own" is the part were Parker lets us know that bustin' does in fact make him feel good. Literally rapping about fighting Vigo the Carpathian versus a veiled sex joke tells you all you need to know about the target audiences for the two films.

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I love "On Our Own" to this day and can still sing along to most of it despite not having heard it in years. The Ghostbusters II soundtrack did have one track that was embarrassingly bad: Run DMC's semi-update on the Ghostbusters theme. It's dreadful in the way only child-friendly 80's rap can be.


On the other hand, Doug E. Fresh and the Get Fresh Crew's "Spirit" still holds up remarkably well. Yes, all this shit is on YouTube.

CoryGarcia communitymanager 1 Like

 @JohnSeabornGray "On Our Own" is weird for me, in that I think the Ghostbusters part is corny and that everything else is fucking incredible.

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