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Soca with a conscience
It was highly regarded English poet, playwright, actor and writer William Shakespeare, who said “When words fail, music speaks.” And indeed it does. We suppose this theory has somehow resonated this year with some soca artistes who are using the influence of music to speak to the various social ills happening in “Sweet T&T.”
Instead of the ‘jump and wave,’ ‘tip pun yuh toe,’ and instructions to rotate your waistline, several of them are spreading the message of peace, love, unity and the need for individual social consciousness.
From early o’clock the band LFS released their 2018 offering in late 2017, tiled Try again. The song speaks to fighting people’s negative vibes about one’s success with continued positive thinking and speaking.
On the popular Upendo Riddim produced by Lenky and Nine Mind Entertainment, Machel Montano tells young women to value themselves because they are more than their hips and thighs with Take it Slow.
Aaron “Voice” St Louis speaks to all so-called ‘bad man’ in his composition Year for Love while Sherwin “M1” Jeremiah pays respect to women in his titled Ups and Downs. Jeremiah begins his song praising women who do not accept physical abuse from men. The song is quite apt as in 2017 the country saw a surge in domestic violence against women. At the start of 2018, domestic violence has already claimed the lives of two women, Arisa David and Vanessa Ali.
Even the Ultimate Rejects whose lead MX Prime (Edghill Thomas), slips in quite cleverly in their 2018 power socaand road march creeper, Lightening Flash, that every life is wonderful.
But it’s not just the secular artistes getting in on the soca commentary some gospel artistes like Genisa “Nisa” St Hillaire and Isaac Blackman are also using the season in an effort to restore social conciseness.
On the Guapo riddim, St Hillaire who recently won best female artiste of the year at the 2018 gospel awards, talks to men about respecting women on a whole on the track titled Life in Leggins.
She reminds them that they came from mothers and also have sisters; therefore women should never be ill-treated. She also called on the commercial world to quit objectifying women, using the female body and sexuality to advertise any and everything.
Her brother in Christ, Blackman, who is the uncle of young soca sensation Nailah Blackman, tells people to put some love and a smile on it when the road gets rough in his 2018 ‘gospelypso’ single named Bumpy. In the three verse song, Blackman also tells men to appreciate their women, he then addresses racial divide in the nation underscoring we are all from the human race and in the final verse, he calls on people to cry out to God during their times of struggle rather than taking matters into their own hands that might at times end with their own demise.
With the current state of the world, not only T&T, we say good going soca artistes for using your influence and the airwaves to convey positive messages in a time when they are most needed. Good job!
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