Shake It Up: Break It Down CD/DVD
Songs By: Various Artists
Distributed By: Walt Disney Records
Reviewed by Melissa Minners
The Disney Channel original series, Shake It Up made it’s debut in 2010 and has since been ranked as television’s top rated series among kids from ages 6-10 and tweens. The series follows the adventures of CeCe (Bella Thorne) and Rocky (Zendaya), two best friends who dream of becoming professional dancers. Those dreams are realized when they are chosen to perform as background dancers on “Shake It Up, Chicago“, the most popular teen dance show in the area. On July 12, 2011, Walt Disney Records released the Shake It Up: Break It Down CD/DVD combo and I had an opportunity to check it out.
Most of the songs on the Shake It Up: Break It Down Soundtrack are performed by up and coming artists that do not star on the show. The show’s theme song, Shake It Up, is performed by Disney Channel superstar Selena Gomez. The track gives us an idea of what to expect from the rest of the album. Synthesizer heavy with great dance beats, the song is reminiscent of those we hear on mainstream radio from dance track favorites like Lady Gaga and Kesha.
The album also features songs by up and coming pop country singer Margaret Durante, Shake It Up guest star Chris Trousdale, singer/actress Kyra Christiaan, Alan de Fonseca, singer/actor Drew Ryan Scott, Lemonade Mouth’s Adam Hicks, Drew Seeley, Tim James, Nevermind, Swedish vocalist Marlene Strand, Anna Margaret, Geraldo Sandell and Ricky Luna. The last track, Watch Me, is performed by the show’s stars, Bella Thorne and Zendaya.
The music found on this album is designed to make you get up and dance. You won’t be able to help yourself. Shake It Up may be a television show geared toward kids, but the music on this show is designed to be enjoyed by kids and adults alike. I found myself singing along with all the tracks before long. The lyrics are vibrant and celebrate life. The music offered up is pure dance, featuring a great deal of techno and pop.
My favorite tracks are the love song Not Too Young; School’s Out, a fun celebration-driven song; and Watch Me, a celebration of self. Out of those three, the lyrics of Watch Me are probably the most poignant for the kids watching this series: “I don't need no music when I wanna sing a song / I don't need what's popular to know what's right or wrong / I'm busy burnin' the track, not holding anything back / I'm just being me, watch me do me!” I love the message in this song - don’t let anyone decide who you are, just be yourself.
The DVD part of the Shake It Up: Break It Down combo features an hour of dance instruction from the show’s choreographer, Rosero McCoy. If you’ve ever watched the dancers on this show in action, you probably have thought that you could never perform like that on the dance floor. But through this DVD, Rosero McCoy breaks down the moves in such numbers like School’s Out, Watch Me, Shake It Up and more. And when I say break it down, I mean all the way, showing you the moves step by step and through repetition until you learn them like it’s second nature. Your kids will be dancing like professional Disney kids after watching this DVD.I found the Shake It Up: Break It Down CD/DVD combo to be a whole lot of fun. Not only did I get to enjoy some really inspiring dance music, but I got to learn how to dance like the pros on the television show. Kids are going to love this combo and parents who enjoy dance music are going to love singing along with the kids. This is one Disney Channel soundtrack I, as an adult, can listen to over and over again without shame with or without kids around!