STEVE WOODS: The polarization of society seems to be reflected in popular music


STEVE WOODS • Guest review

Steve Woods lives in Little Bras d’Or.

Sandra Hendsbee’s excellent letter (“Memorable Music”, September 9) on what constitutes music in today’s society got me thinking.

Music is one of the most definitive dividing lines between generations. Remembering when I was very young, I vividly remember the look of disgust on my dad’s face as I held a Beatles album, as he said, “She loves you , Yeah yeah yeah ? It’s not music! My father was an aficionado of “classical” classical music, Mozart, Chopin, etc. I didn’t hate this music but it didn’t really appeal to me. There is this generational divide.

A few years ago I walked past a co-worker who was playing some kind of rap that sounded different from the traditional stuff. In front of him, on his device, was an image of an angry-looking man with his teeth bared, holding a gun held aside.

I asked in disbelief, “Does he rap about shooting people?”

He replied, “Yeah bro, he brings it to the man. It’s called F-tha Police.

I was of the opinion that “bring it to the man” could refer to anyone who enforced the law and upheld authority, which he readily accepted.

At that point, I asked a platitude-type question: “Do you love your mother?” »

” Well yes. Why?” he replied.

“What would you think if I made a rap album about your mother’s assault?”

He was mortified. “I would be pissed off!” he proclaimed aloud.

I said, “My son is a peace officer, and I love him, and it offends me to listen to music that talks about hurting him, or worse. Stop playing that trash when I’m around.

He picked up his device and left the office angrily.

Rap, hip hop, more recent pop music, it’s not my preference but I understand the generational divide. There is nothing wrong with any entertainment that appeals to people in a way that does not advocate violence, imposed by anyone on anyone.

But something changed between She Loves You (Yeah, Yeah, Yeah) and F-tha Police.

I understand the effect of brutality on people, no matter who commits it. I watch in horror the terrible actions of some captured on video and the harm this causes.

But advocating anarchy will not make things better. As we see daily on the news these days, polarization and passive anarchy seem to be taking hold of our species little by little, despite our best efforts.

I guess we are not trying hard enough.


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