“Ban them all” seems to be the cry from the dancehall community. Dancehall artistes believe that the recent ban by the Broadcasting Commission on all ‘daggerin’ songs and songs that require bleeping unfairly targets dancehall music.
With the ban of certain songs from radio, television and cable, some members of the entertainment fraternity are lashing out at what they view as the commission’s bias.
Nothing better to do
In a statement from singjay Mr Vegas, who first used the daggerin’ phrase in the song Hot Wuk, he noted, “I think the Broadcasting Commission has nothing better to do with their time. More than 50 per cent of the songs which are played on radio have some form of editing. So what is radio gonna sound like? Maybe we should just get one national station and call it Love 102.”
He continued: “What they are doing is killing the creativity. It’s no different when a R&B song says ‘I’ll make love to you like you want me to’, than when a Jamaican says ‘bend ova’; it’s just the way we speak…talking about sex doesn’t mean it has to be lewd and so many of our artistes have proven that. And simply because something is edited doesn’t mean a curse word was there. Sometimes as artistes we realise the word may be too coarse for radio, but fit for the dance, so the word is edited.”
At a press conference held at the Knutsford Court hotel yesterday, the Broadcasting Commission used the opportunity to further explain the new policies which were implemented last Friday. According to the commission’s executive director, Cordell Green, the new policies are not an attack on dancehall. He instead views the new policies as a ‘watermark’ for further initiatives that will be employed. He also said the commission would be scrutinising other genres of music and events such as soca and carnival.
Meanwhile, Renegade, of the duo RDX, believes that there is nothing wrong with cleaning up the music, but says it should be applied to all genres. He told THE STAR, “I think this is an attack by the Broadcasting Commission on dancehall, because they have not stopped just any sexual music, but ‘daggerin’ songs, which is a dancehall slang and practice. Songs such as I Kissed A Girl are not banned, so according to them if you say it in patois it’s not OK, but if you say it in English it’s OK. It’s about Jamaicans attacking Jamaicans and Jamaican music.”
Musician, Tarrus Riley, also agreed that all forms of music should be included in the purging process.
“If dem can play Candy Shop from 50 Cent then you can play Rampin’ Shop. Artistes should be able to express themselves freely, express their art freely but you must just be responsible for what you do. There is different music for different people and artistes should be free to create music, is just that some music isn’t suited for radio. If dancehall songs can’t be played on radio then some hip-hop can’t be played, either.”