Music is medicine for the soul. I have seen music change people’s lives for the better and some for the worst. Nonetheless, it can be seen that music most certainly has on effect on a person. Reggae music is one of those musical genres that no matter what year it is, you are guaranteed to hear a positive message in the lyrics – topics vary from praising Jah to speaking out against politicians to shedding light on serious taboos that society tries to shun away from and hide under the rug.
I can’t recall when I personally first heard this record but in preparation for this week’s segment I came across “Play Your Part” which features some reggae/dancehall most popular artistes. They include: Beres Brown, Bounty Killa, Cherine, Chevaughn, Craig and Kevin of Voicemail, Konshens, Marlon Binns, Omari, Raine Seville and Red Rat. The record was produced by PayDay Music, alongside Nigel Staff, as a call to action in response to an article, which was posted in Jamaican News Media about the stories of sexual abuse to young children within the nation. This record was not created in an attempt to overshadow what abuse is taking place in other countries but it was essentially produced to bring about awareness in Jamaica and hopefully spark other nations to rally their resources and to do the same. (Credit: Krish Genius)
I recently came upon “How We Living” by Cherine when I was actually looking to schedule her interview for tonight’s show. It was featured on her website and before I actually went to contact her team I watched the video, and immediately I had chills. The lyrics, the visual, and the sound of the record, just about everything about it I loved. The message of the song resonated with me because I often wonder truly what message is being sent to the young children today. I can recall as a youngster being told not to do something, but then seeing the very person who told me not to do that something – doing it! Kind of throws a young child off when trying to comprehend why that person gets to do it but not me, when I wanted to do it just as much or maybe more as them. There is so much more in “How We Living” aside from the obvious “what are we teaching the children” lyrics. This song, much like “Play Your Part” calls for action, it calls for society to take responsibility for whatever part they are playing in what is going wrong with today’s generation. (Credit: UrbanIslandz and CherineAnderson.com)
I am a mere 23 years old but I know for a fact that I am wise beyond my years; age to me is sincerely nothing but a number. I have heard too many times the elders of my community blame the young folks for the problems in the world today. I will say that we most certainly are playing a role in much of what is going wrong today, but we were only born in the 80s and 90s – growing up learning from others, seeing what they did, mimicking them and trying to find our own. If there’s anything wrong with what we are doing, we were only allowed to do it as a young child and now it seems too late to say “no” to us. Everyone needs to stop placing blame away from him or herself and truly acknowledge their own personal role in the problem, no matter how big or small it may. Only then can we move forward to a positive change. It’s time that we stop holding others to a higher standard than we hold ourselves then get mad when that person falls short. We all fall short at some point or another. All I ask is that you take a look at whatever it is you think is going wrong in today’s society and ask yourself – what have I do to contribute to it and what will I do alleviate the problem? If you say nothing, then quite frankly you have all the rights in the world to be quiet and let someone who is willing to evoke change do something.