The controversial Junior Bashment Soca competition being hosted by the National Cultural Foundation (NCF) won’t be replicated by promoters within the private sector.
Paul Clarke, the founder and director of the country’s first Junior Soca Monarch competition said neither he nor his partners had an interest in promoting the sub-genre among the many island’s young artistes.
“We don’t do bashment,” Clarke told Barbados TODAY.
“In my opinion, you either have the sweet soca, which has a slower BPM, or you could have the ability soca, which is the faster soca. We don’t go down the road of bashment.
“Bashment will not be a riddim or will not be based on BPMs and we definitely don’t condone lyrics that mustn’t be on a stage period and definitely not on a stage where children are being featured,” he explained.
The sub-genre, which has often been characterised by lewd lyrics, has largely remained underground. Nonetheless, in 2019, it was embraced on the adult level and this yr, the NCF has decided to have a junior bashment soca monarch this yr
Chief Executive Officer of the NCF Carol Roberts has repeatedly defended the muse’s decision to host the festival on the idea that the infectious bashment soca beats may be merged with more healthful lyrics.
Clarke noted that while he was not keen on featuring the event within the private sector Junior Soca Monarch, he believes the NCF may be trusted to tread fastidiously when rolling out its event.
“I don’t expect the NCF to let any person get on a national stage singing songs which can be inappropriate. They’re more responsible than that, so before we condemn it completely, I’d say give them a probability to execute what they try to execute and let’s see what style of impact it has,” said Clarke.
“I cannot see how it really works. I could understand when you desired to call it power soca. Bashment will not be something that originated with Barbados in the primary place, so I don’t really see how we could claim it as our own.
“I don’t know in the event that they are doing specific songwriting workshops or how they’re doing it to cater to that younger audience, but we should be mindful of what we expose our kids to. But in the event that they have done the vital research and so they think it’s a very good idea, more power to them.
“I’m sticking within the realm of developing soca music, because soca music may be very international and business and if we are able to develop more Young Bloods and Allison Hinds and folks like Marzville and Hypasounds, those that we are able to construct and export, that may profit Barbados and the Caribbean in a positive way. That’s what we try to do,” he added.
The event promoter, who can be president of the Barbados Coalition of Service Industries explained that artistes are free to pursue bashment soca outside of his developmental programme.
He noted that some artistes, like Lil Rick have been in a position to straddle between the underground and mainstream soca sub-genres.
“I believe the discussion is vital. We must work out how we wish to guide our kids. I do know the interest now and what individuals are talking about is bashment soca. I’ve heard some people asking, ‘why not a junior gospel monarch or gospel soca?’” said Clarke.
“I don’t know what the response was like for them, but to seek out eight people singing bashment, eight people singing soca and eight people singing calypso, I can see where that may be a bit difficult,” he added. (TD)