After the election: How will Reggae react to President Trump?
11/10/2016 by Gardy Stein
For many months, the presidential elections in America have dominated the media worldwide. This cumulated tension was released yesterday with a bang: Donald Trump will be the 45th president of the United States. Coming out of the state of shock the world is in, the web is abuzz with social commentaries. Already during the campaigns, there were intense discussions about who said what when to whom, and a quick Google search results in dozens of support- or diss-tracks about the opponents. Most of them are Rap or HipHop, some Rock, some Country.
Where is our beloved Reggae in this? Where are the conscious artists that are up to snuff with late-breaking issues around the world? Yes, we have clever minds like Kabaka Pyramid (Well Done), Torch (World Cry) and others, but the genre-characteristic focus on Unity, Ganja and Jah seems to contribute to a certain hesitation when it comes to international political subjects such as the refugee crisis in Europe, death-tolled Oromo-demonstrations in Ethiopia and – yes – the US election. In the Dancehall, on the other hand, prominent representatives like Kartel, Mavado, Popcaan and Alkaline seem to be too absorbed in fighting their feuds to contribute output of global relevance. Remarkable exception in the context of the elections is Perfect Giddimani who constantly perks up his ears to current issues (remember Laugh in 2013?) and who, already back in May, published the hilarious single Dollnald Trummp [WATCH BELOW]. Less known, Rula Brown joined the race with Dump Donald Trump [WATCH HERE] a few weeks ago. New input also came from an unexpected corner: out of Ghana, the Reggae artist Blakk Rasta released a song called Dumb Trump [WATCH HERE] last month, taking a clear stance against the "man with a squirrel on his head".
Whether or not you agree with the opinions expressed in these tracks, this kind of critical reflection is highly welcome, needed even. Will the startling outcome of this vote result in more social commentary songs? Make yourselves be heard, ye singers and players of instruments!
PS: Back in 1993, Bill Clinton invited Steel Pulse to perform at his inauguration celebration. Let's see who will play for Donald Trump… According to a facebook user Etana is an option :)