Is Dancehall a breeding ground for violence?

Both Vybz Kartel and Ninjaman are serving life sentences for murder while Munga Honorebel awaits his murder trial. So the question must be asked if there is a correlation between violence and dancehall music.

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Vybz Kartel and Ninjaman
Vybz Kartel and Ninjaman

In light of the question ask one must respond accordingly whether it be dancehall the venue or dancehall the music, dancehall the space that it occupies or dancehall the message that it brings.

Wherein one would argue that dancehall the music is not a breeding ground for violence but lays the blame squarely at the feet of the media who for a slice of the limelight or filthy lucre have made themselves a proxy for the lowest level of music found in the dancehall.

I was taken aback about a decade ago when I was asked to sit as a judge during a talent competition to find out that there were two themes on which all the artiste would build their lyrics on, which is either a gun tune or a girls tune there seemingly was nothing to write about except girls or guns.

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Dancehall which started in the late 70s, arguably the most popular music in Jamaica has no doubt make its mark on the world for more reasons than good, During the 70s only the artiste, deejays as they were popular called who were themselves thugs are aligned to the then rude boys were able to ply their craft constantly, hence an aspiring deejay must be willing to defend his rights to a portion of the mic, besides the necessary competitive nature of the artistes they have to possess the where with all to defend their profession. And thus we will find the aggressive nature of our entertainers.

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Today many complain about the lewd lyrics coming out of dancehall and its influence on the minds of the youth. But it’s mostly the youth who are providing the content for dancehall most entertainers tend to become more conscious with growth barring a few. Hence thou the product which is delivered in the dancehall society must bear a portion of the blame for the derogatory lyrics coming out of the genre.



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