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14 Songs That Might Not Seem So Radical Today, But Were Groundbreaking When They Were Released

Prince's Dirty Mind was waaaaay ahead of its time in 1980.

We asked the BuzzFeed Community to tell us which songs were way ahead of their time. Here are the groundbreaking results.

Warning: Some submissions include topics of sexual assault and lynching. Please proceed with caution.

Note: Not all submissions were made by Community users.

1. "What's Going On" by Marvin Gaye (1971) was about the injustices of the Vietnam War.

Marvin Gaye lyrics: "Pick lines and picket signs don't punish me with brutality. Come on, talk to me, so you can see, oh, what's going on"

Listen to the song here:

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Tamla / Motown / Via youtube.com

2. "9 to 5" by Dolly Parton (1980) tackled the toxic sexism ingrained in workplace culture.

Dolly Parton lyrics: "9 to 5, for service and devotion β€” you would think that I would deserve a fair promotion. Want to move ahead, but the boss won't seem to let me. I swear sometimes that man is out to get me"

Listen to the song here:

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RCA Nashville / Via youtube.com

3. "Hurricane" by Bob Dylan (1976) was about famous boxer Rubin "Hurricane" Carter, a Black man, who was falsely accused of murder.

Bob Dylan lyrics: ""Here comes the story of the Hurricane, the man the authorities came to blame. For something that he never done, put in a prison cell but one time, he could-a been the champion of the world"

Listen to the song here:

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Columbia / Via youtube.com

4. "Strange Fruit" by Billie Holiday (1939) acknowledged the lynchings of innocent Black citizens in the US.

Billie Holiday lyrics: "Southern trees bear a strange fruit, blood on the leaves and blood at the root. Black bodies swingin' in the Southern breeze, strange fruit hangin' from the poplar trees."

Listen to the 1944 version here:

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Commodore / Via youtube.com

5. "You Don't Own Me" by Lesley Gore (1963) was about women embracing their independence from men and a patriarchal society.

Lesley Gore lyrics: "Don't tell me what to do and don't tell me what to say, and please, when I go out with you, don't put me on display. You don't own me, don't try to change me in any way. You don't own me, don't tie me down 'cause I'd never stay"

Listen to the song here:

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Mercury / Via youtube.com

6. "Let's Talk About Sex" by Salt-N-Pepa (1991) was about eliminating the stigma around conversations about sex.

Salt-N-Pepa lyrics: ""Let's talk about sex for now to the people at home or in the crowd, it keeps coming up anyhow. Don't decoy, avoid, or make void the topic, 'cause that ain't gonna stop it"

Listen to the song here:

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Next Plateau / Via youtube.com

7. "Under Pressure" by Queen and David Bowie (1981) covered the hatred and violence embedded in American society, and the overwhelming feeling that came as a result of it.

Queen and David Bowie singing: "Under pressure, that burns a building down, splits a family in two, puts people on streets. That's the terror of knowing what this world is about β€” watching some good friends screaming: 'Let me out!'"

Listen to the song here:

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EMI / Elektra / Via youtube.com

8. "Waterfalls" by TLC (1994) was one of the first songs to ever talk about HIV in an unfiltered way.

TLC lyrics: ""One day he goes and takes a glimpse in the mirror, but he doesn't recognize his own face. His health is fading and he doesn't know why, three letters took him to his final resting place"

Listen to the song here:

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LaFace / Arista / Via youtube.com

9. "What Would You Do?" by City High (2001) was recorded to illustrate the reality of being a sex worker and to eliminate the toxic label behind it.

City High lyrics: "What would you do if your son was at home, crying all alone on the bedroom floor 'cause he's hungry? And the only way to feed him is to sleep with a man for a little bit of money"

Listen to the song here:

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Interscope / Rockland / Via youtube.com

10. "Big Yellow Taxi" by Joni Mitchell (1970) was written about the dangers of destroying wildlife and the environment.

Joni Mitchell lyrics: "They took all the trees, put 'em in a tree museum β€” and they charged the people a dollar and a half just to see 'em. Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got 'till it's gone?"

Listen to the song here:

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Reprise / Warner Bros. / Via youtube.com

11. "Papa Was a Rollin' Stone" by the Temptations (1972) was one of the first songs to candidly talk about a father abandoning his family and leaving his wife to raise their kids on her own.

The Temptations' lyrics: "Mama, some bad talk goin' 'round town sayin' that papa had three outside children and another wife β€” and that ain't right."

Listen to the song here:

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Motown / Via youtube.com

12. "Eve of Destruction" by Barry McGuire (1965) tackled the anger and frustration young US citizens felt in the '60s about the Vietnam War and racial discrimination.

Barry McGuire lyrics: "The eastern world it is exploding β€” violence flarin', bullets loadin'. You're old enough to kill but not for votin' β€” you don't believe in war, but whats that gun you're totin'? And even the Jordan River has bodies floatin'"

Listen to the song here:

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Dunhill / RCA / Via youtube.com

13. "Shave 'Em Dry" by Lucille Bogan (1935) was an unapologetic blues song from the '30s about a woman expressing her sexual pleasures and desires.

Lucille Bogan lyrics: "I got nipples on my titties, big as the end of my thumb. I got somethin' between my legs'll make a dead man come. Oh daddy, baby, won't you shave 'em dry? Want you to grind me, baby, grind me until I cry."

Listen to the song here:

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Document Records / Via youtube.com

14. And "Head" by Prince (1980) tackled the passionate experience of a man performing oral sex on a woman.

Prince lyrics: "Now morning, noon, and night, I give you head, till you're burning up. Head, till you get enough. Head, till your love is red. Head, love you till you're dead."

Listen to the song here:

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Warner Bros. / Via youtube.com

Note: Submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity.