Is Corporate Jamaica Against Dancehall Music? - After another successful Carnival season in Jamaica, Dancehall fans are left with a sour taste in their mouths with huge backing from major sponsors, incident free, government endorsement and financial gains. One is then forced to ask: is corporate Jamaica against Dancehall music?
The question has been a topic of discussion over the years and has amassed various opinions from all parties.
Whenever you see an event taking place in Jamaica, that has police officers as security, no complaints of disturbances of any kind even at broad daylight, road blocks and traffic aversions on major roadways to accommodate scantily clad revelers and international promotional campaigns sponsored by top corporate entities, it does seem obvious that corporate Jamaica is against Dancehall music as they are yet to do the same for a Dancehall event.
Is it because Dancehall gets sexual and very hardcore at times? Well, doesn't Soca music denotes sexual connotations in every way possible as well? Why bash our natural, cultural invention and accept with open arms something that was adopted by us from another country? Is it because Dancehall promotes violence? Maybe, but music, in general, is a form of expression and based on experiences of the artists.
It seems quite unfair to those who use Dancehall music as a means of work, to provide for families and survive in such a stressing and manipulative world. It isn't fair to have to put up with the fight and struggles received from your own people when large sums of money can be made if only a major investment was provided by any corporate business located in Jamaica. There is no need to keep talking about the bad, when that only adds to the problem. Why not be apart of the solution? Make Dancehall great by using it as a tourist attraction.
The same amount of effort put into a Carnival parade can be placed on the entire Dancehall music industry to make it a worldwide phenomenon, pulling in huge profits and a sea of avid fans to our shores to experience it from the source. Everyone would be making money. Jamaica would flourish, less crime and violence because everyone would be looking to strike it rich while having a good time in the process. There would be enough money to go around so no need to resort to violence to make a quick buck.
There should be an organized liaison between corporate heads and key players in the music industry. This meeting should be judgement free, with open and honest discussions to be had, where instead of enforcing bans, all participants allow room for compromise in helping to uplift the Dancehall culture, rather than to diminish it all together.
Jamaican people are a determined set and will always try to beat the system if it keeps working against them. In order to change that for the best, the bigger heads need to realize the benefits of such a venture. Dancehall music can be exponentially marketable for the entire island if only a collaborative effort is made to make it happen.
Written by: Lesley Hayles
Date: April 29, 2017