Tuesday, January 24, 2017
DANCEHALL MUSIC HYSTERIA, #6: POST-SCAMCORE
A hearty wa gwan to my readership. DANCEHALL MSUIC HYSTEIRA back in dis mudflap.
Who can forget when Buju Banton and Nardo Ranks had a free and open exchange on the subject of skin bleaching? We all know what happened. Nardo Ranks became a cultural icon and nobody uses cake soap anymore.
History repeats itself. In recent years, the lottery scam has been celebrated in songs by Vybz Kartel and Lady Saw. Legit stars like Vershon and Tommy Lee Sparta, the Criss Angel of dancehall, even caught cases for their alleged involvement in these scams. The set-up is simple. Call up some poor old bastard and tell them they won the lottery. Ask 'em to send a lil money to pay for fees or taxes or some shit and watch the wire transfers pile up. For my gramps, it was some sprinkleheads from the Netherlands. They were even selling him magic crystals n shit, it was weird, I thought he was an old guy and not some new-age earthperson (RIP Gramps). Guess that's what we all gotta look forward to when we become wrinklebags.
Last year's scamcore included Vybz's "Western Union" and Xklusive's cumbersome "Scamma Dem Deh Yah (Big Money Popping)." Now we got this barnstormer. Some speculate "Dem Think A Chattingz" is a response to the Xklusive song. Basically they sayin, "Be about ya walk, not ya talk. Scamming? Where ya money at? 'Tain't nothin to brag about." It ain't exactly anti-scamming, but it ain't glorifying it neither. Anyway, moderately big chune! BO BO!
I like scamming songs because they are rebellious, and it fits with the rebellious image I have of myself to enjoy punk counterculture songs about illegal activities, even though I would hate it if it happened to me or someone I care about, but I won't have to put my money where my mouth is until I'm staring down the barrel of a gun, which is unlikely to happen, or Alzheimer's, which I am genetically predisposed to, turns my brain to baby formula, and I'm sending my paltry Social Security checks to some guy in Montego Bay and a Thai cutie who likes me for my personality. So until that comfortably distant day, I'll keep promoting songs about selling drugs and swindling old people! I might even write a thinkpiece educating you on why bad things are actually good, and you'll just have to expand your mind you lumpen-dummy :)