The notice of the Broadcasting Commission’s immediate ban on music that promotes guns, scamming, and molly on public airwaves has given rise to dissension amongst the citizens on the island.
Among them is popular Disk Jockey ZJ Liquid who spoke out on the matter during an interview with The Star. The DJ stated, “We are not your kids. We are a body. You link up the body and seh ‘Guess what, we are going to take these initiatives and make these moves.” Continuing, he mentioned the fact that the country is not being ruled by a dictatorship and that as no one can tell him what to do, he will proceed with playing the type of music that he wishes to play.
Also, recording artiste and producer, ZJ Liquid said, “…and honestly mi don’t even care at this point. Mi go just play wah me feel fi play same way.” Although relenting that the Commission might not be wrong, he implied that “with immediate effect” was disrespectful and belittling.
Rounding out the cause of his intense ire, the Wife Material entertainer voiced that music played on the radio is already censored, and most people, children included, listen to explicit songs during their own free time, and that he is over the lack of concern that the government had toward the music industry during the Covid 19 pandemic.
A host of other influential individuals have also shared their views on the sudden imposing of a ban on this specific type of music in the public space.
Stephen McGregor, more popularly referred to as ‘Di Genius’, stated in a Twitter post, “Yay!! Crime and violence gonna magically stop now. Jamaica the most sample place on earth.” When someone replied to his post by admitting that even if the ban does not work, there is no reason for songs like that to be on the radio. Di Genius then vocalized, a point ZJ Liquid introduced, “No one from the younger generation voluntarily listens to the radio in 2022.” He expounded by remarking that the government is just posturing instead of actually doing more to curb the violence in the country. Di Genius mentioned that for as long as he could remember music has always adopted the blame for all the wrong in Jamaica.
Tanya Stephens and Romeich Major also gave their two cents worth of thoughts on the ban.
Stephens stated that when she was attending high school, songs used to be banned then as well. She specified the artiste Admiral Bailey for his song NFAP Man and voiced that despite all the challenges, entertainers still progressed.
Romeich added that although he disagrees with lauding violent songs and understands the current concerns, restricting artistes and telling them that they cannot sing about their everyday struggles and what they see happening in the society around them, is akin to stifling creative talent. The manager declared, “Jamaica has one of the strictest regulations against music.” He also questioned if the same music being played across different media platforms like Spotify and Soundcloud would also be restricted.
It is not only the artistes and people in the entertainment industry that are questioning the validity of the immediate ban. However, Jamaican citizens on various social media platforms (especially TikTok) have taken the comedic route in most of their interactions.
Take a look at some of these reaction videos below: