Music critic Anthony Admiral Nelson believes there is a place for bashment soca, but has cautioned artistes to treat the genre with respect and be cautious about what they release for public consumption.
In an interview with Barbados TODAY, he also urged singers to be more creative if they wanted the genre to survive.
“I think if the fellas aren’t careful, it’s going to disappear after a while, because people are going to get tired of it. You can’t come every year and sing about the same thing you’ve been singing about every year – wukking up; jam a woman’s anatomy and this and that; you want to bore a hole; you want to go through the back door.
“I mean, come on, we as an intelligent people should be able to find other constructive things that we could put into the songs. You have to hold on to it, treat it well, treat it with respect,” the veteran media personality said.
While bashment soca has been criticized as lewd by some, Nelson said he would not shut the door on it, because it gave young people an avenue to express their creativity.
“Bashment Soca is an interesting expression of a group of young people who would not otherwise get involved in the Crop Over season . . . But I want them to look at that outlet and treat it with a level of respect, and treat the women with a level of respect,” he stressed.
Nelson also expressed concern about some of the things the artistes were allowing into the genre.
“While we have a music form that is musically a collaboration of Jamaican and what we call soca here . . . what they’re bringing . . . leaves a lot to be desired. The other issue is, the videos in the bashment soca tell one story, the lyrics tell something different. When the music stops, the videos continue to send the message. Bashment soca is a music form, but it comes with this ‘bashyness’ to get on bad, to wuk up stink, to say all types of things and do all types of things. It’s a behaviour. I think they have gone way past it being a music form,” Nelson lamented.
“$50,000 to go on stage and sing about beating up and bashing up a woman, that’s unheard of,” he added, referring to the value of prizes given in the Bashment Soca competition. “And the guys that are singing real kaiso in the tent can’t get that type of money.”
Nelson said that as far as he was concerned, there were only one or two bashment soca songs that showed any real promise this year – Wood by Scrilla and Lil Rick’s All Kinda Girls.
“When you look at Scrilla with Wood, it’s a theme that has been bandied about the soca arena for a while, but I must give him credit for how he handled it. I’m surprised Lil Rick didn’t get into Bashment [Soca] this year, because I think that girls song is probably one of the best songs ever written,” he added.