Call for Soca ban
Angry Jamaicans target T&T as rude reggae-dancehall songs taken off airwaves
Wayne Bowman email@example.com
Wednesday, February 11th 2009
Jamaicans, angered over that country's Broadcasting Commission banning reggae-dancehall songs containing sexually explicit lyrics, have called on the commission to also ban soca music from Trinidad and Tobago.
People calling in on talk shows of several radio stations on the island since Monday said that the soca music played during Jamaica carnival is laced with lewd and offensive lyrics that are worse than anything the Jamaican dancehall artistes sing.
At a press conference in Jamaica yesterday, Jamaica Broadcasting Commission chairman Dr Hopeton Dunn explained that he made recommendations to the government to have the radio and television stations cleaned up through amendments to the broadcast regulations. The commission went on to ban the transmission of any song or music video that promotes the act known as daggering. Also banned are songs that require the use of bleeping or beeping techniques to mask explicit lyrics. Daggering is a slang referring to rough sex and has been the subject of several very popular reggae-dancehall songs by artistes such as Mr Vegas and Busy Signal. The term has also found its way into the soca arena with artistes like KMC, Dawg-E-Slaughter and Snakey making references to the term in songs they have released this year.
On a talk show yesterday on Jamaican radio, Dr Kwame Nantambu from the Cipriani Labour College described soca music as nothing more than musical pornography. He believes that there is a direct correlation between soca music and moral decadence in Trinidad and Tobago, adding that for every ten soca songs, eight or even nine are laced with smut.
Also interviewed on the talk show, soca artiste KMC challenged Nantambu on this, saying his songs such as "I'm Not Drunk" and "Yeast" are songs that address issues while making listeners have a good time and that there is no smut in them. The artiste went on to name other soca songs that are not sexually explicit and challenged Nantambu by stating in every genre of music one will find risqué songs whether its soca, reggae, hip-hop or rock.
Nantambu singled out Bunji Garlin's "Banana" saying he saw children jumping up to it for kiddies carnival, although no such events have taken place for this year as yet. He said the song is blatantly pornographic leaving nothing to the imagination as Sparrow did when he sang songs like "Mae Mae" and Kitchener did "Sugar Bum Bum."
KMC said if the Jamaica Broadcasting Commission decided to ban reggae-dancehall songs that are sexually explicit or contain the word daggering, he has no problem with them also banning soca songs of the same nature. He, however, told Nantambu that he does not appreciate anyone making a blanket statement that all soca music is lewd and suggestive.
Meanwhile, Concerned Jamaicans, 'a newly established group of Christians, youth and the music fraternity' is planning a public march on Saturday morning in Jamaica in support of the Broadcasting Commission's ban on lewd lyrics.
The group says that it also supports a call to update legislation, law enforcement and stiffer penalties and also calls upon persons to boycott offending artistes. -See Page 52