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Mario - Braid My Hair - Lyrics Meaning

With this song, the teenage crooner Mario was making his debut as a 15 year old artist. It was released as a single in 2001 ahead of his 2002 album, and "Braid My Hair" was a showcase for the singer's soulful voice. However, the sultry tones belied the innocent words of the song and had some critics upset by the lyrical inferences.

On its surface, "Braid My Hair" is telling the story of a famous kid who misses the simple life that he once had. It makes references to the toll of the recording work, while reminiscing about life back in his traditional neighborhood. Back there, his girlfriend would create the elaborate braids favored by young black men for their style.

However, on the other hand, the intimacy of asking for the different kinds of braids had a decidedly sexual undertone. In this way, the lyrics of the song are communicating the lonely desire of a young man for his equally youthful lover. Parents were upset, but the singer and his producers did not back away from the sense of intimate connection the lyrics implied. Partnering the song with a single "Just A Friend", they seemed to wink at both interpretations.

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