MUSIC: HOW FAR HAVE WE COME?
It is a fact that music is therapeutic, a means to relax, and for celebration among other things. In times past, we had the singers from Africa who sang about freedom from oppression, Black rappers in America who used rap to advocate for the end of racism. Majorly, in past times., Music was used to pass messages that were positive and meant to correct societal ills. Examples of some of these musicians include Reggae legend, Bob Marley, the king of pop, Michael Jackson, Lucky Dube, Afro-beat Legend, Fela Anikulapo Kuti amongst others.
However, as time has gone by, things have changed and the dynamics of Music has changed. Well, some could attribute it to the fact that racism is no longer rampant in the world again, oppression is a concept that has been kicked against worldwide, among other reasons. However, we would be kidding ourselves if we were to deny the fact that generally, the message the music, through various artistes in the modern day pass across. We now have music artistes who pass messages through their music, that speak of violence, sex, objectification of the female gender, internet fraud, drugs among other things.
While many may argue that everyone has the rights too express themselves through any medium, it is important to note that when these rights are expressed in ways that affect the society negatively, they should be curtailed.
At this point, it is pertinent for us to examine the effect that the message that the music of nowadays passes down to the present generation.
First, it is pertinent that we examine things from Nigeria before we go abroad. In recent times, different songs have been released which inadvertently glorify internet fraud, sex, and getting rich quickly. By consequence, this has aroused the curiosity of the youths of today and had made them to begin to search for wealth by all means in order to satisfy their desires and live life as portrayed to them by these artistes. This has caused an increase in crime rate, rape amongst other nefarious activities.
Going abroad, although there are some musicians that sing messages that pass proper messages, many of them sing songs that speak of the craze for wealth, sex, and violence among other things. Some might argue that these things are not caused by the songs that musicians sing as people who indulge in these vices have minds of their own. However, it is important to note that as music is therapeutic, so also can it be a means to influence people in a society to engage in nefarious activities.
At this juncture, it is instructive to assert that although we have our rights to sing whatever we want, it is equally important that as musicians, who are seen as a symbol of change in the society, it is important to sing songs that speak of honesty, unity, peace and togetherness.