Saturday 10th February 2007

Lisa Allen-Agostini
Sports Arena
Business Guardian
Online Community
Death Notices
Classified Ads
Jobs in T&T
Contact Us
Privacy Policy

[email protected]

What little girls are made of

Part 2

Men writing songs women singing.

Men begging women to let them wine on them.

Women only there to wine and roll their bumsie.

No songs about equal partnership.

Tonight I’m in the mood

I want to wine and behave rude

So every thing you want to do

I dare you, I dare you.

Destra Garcia - I Dare You

Guardian kaiso competition was the other day. As I was watching the performers sweating up on stage, I look at my little girls watching them and singing along. I start to think about what Carnival, and particularly soca music, is to girl children.

Like I say last week, I reading a book name Packaging Girlhood by Sharon Lamb and Lyn Mikel Brown, two US writers. You know how it have some books you does read that does leave you thinking? That is one of them books. It have so much in it about how we does train up we girl children to be weak, soft and delicate, to deny that they smart and that they like things like maths and science.

Although the book talking about America and American culture, I want to take some of their examples and put it in we garden. You see, although them talking about Kelly Clarkson and Hilary Duff, they might as well be saying Destra and Patrice, because that is the equivalent for we girls.

What the book say is that almost all the pop music it have on radio that women singing, is men writing it, producing it and directing the videos for it. So when you hear a song by a woman, stop and ask yourself: is really a woman I listening to? Or a woman saying what a man put in she mouth? And not just any man, neither, but a man who want to push down we throat a version of woman that stupidee, needy, addicted to sex and helpless when it come to man.

Think about it, if you know any recent pop songs. Is Britney Spears singing how the man is poison but she can’t help she self? Or Fergie saying she does drive the brothers crazy with she humps, she lovely lady lumps? Fergie self come back with a next one, Fergilicious, about how boys love she so much.

In-between you go hear songs about women being strong and independent, or a woman telling a man he need to come correct or don’t bother to come at all. I real like a song by Pink, where she say, “I’m not here for your entertainment, you don’t really want to mess with me tonight,” telling a fellah who trying to pick she up in a bar to do so and ride out.

But for the most part what you hearing on the radio when is a woman singing? (Don’t talk for all the tripe you does hear from men, especially about women. That is another story by itself.)

Coming back to we, now. In Sugar Boy, Patrice Roberts love this boy that if she can’t get he she don’t want nobody else. In I Dare You, Destra inviting a man to hold she from behind and come and take a wine.

But listen to what men singing. To a man, they begging women to let them wine on them, because the woman wine so inviting. But the invitation ent sounding too optional; think about how Kevin Lyttle put it in he song Turn Me On. “If you think you’re gonna get away from me, better change your mind. You’re going home, you’re going home with me tonight.”

(Surge was a exception because they didn’t try to press the point, they just say they go give the girl some space to decide when she want to be with them, in she timing.)

The women in most of these songs is objects. They there only to wine, to roll they magnificent bumsie to hypnotise man. Must be because my bottom flat that I don’t identify with them. I is more than a bumsie and I could offer a man more than just a nice wine.

In recent times it have a new set of woman soca, about how man bad and they, the women and them, not taking it anymore. I like them songs, because I find as woman we does take too much stupidness from man.

(I putting myself right in there, to be honest, because I take more than my share of foolishness from man, too.)

But I have a question: where the songs that singing about a loving, respectful and equal partnership between a man and a woman, that is not about how good she does give it to him, how sweet she does wine or how big she bottom is?

The only song so I could of think of was Bonnie and Clyde by Destra. That song is about a mutual and exclusive love relationship, even though it get interrupted when she lost him in a fete. But the song is about a rag! You could tell me that the best man represented in soca is a rag? What that say for we?

Sex is a beautiful thing and is a part of every human being. It natural and I not trying to say it wrong. What we have to ask weself, though, is why we taking this nice thing God give we and making a pappyshow out of it in all we soca performances.

A fellah can’t do a soca set without getting a woman to come and ride he on stage; a woman can’t do she act without showing how she could tremble it, bicycle it, rock it, work it or some other acrobatic feat with she bumsie.

(Again, since I little on the heavy side and nobody ent go want me jump on them, and I have no bumsie to speak of, I could be bias here.)

Saying all that, don’t get me wrong: I wining with the best of them when Destra sing she song, and I not going and refuse a wine if you offer, once you come respectful. All I saying is that we should make sure and listen to what we wining to.

When we finish wine, we must work to build a industry to encourage more women songwriters like Nadia Batson, video producers like Lisa Wickham, and the few performers who doesn’t follow the stereotypes of what soca say a man and a woman is to be.


©2005-2006 Trinidad Publishing Company Limited

Designed by: Randall Rajkumar-Maharaj · Updated daily by: Nicholas Attai