Vulgarity in songs

I have been following Nepali music for a long time. There is hardly any person who is not touched by the magic of music.

The taste of music may differ from one person to another, but everyone listens to it. Music soothes your mind, relieves stress and helps pass time.

While travelling by bus or while jogging, we plug earphones into our ears and listen to our favourite songs. Old-aged people like to listen to old classical songs while young people prefer rap songs and pop songs, among others. Artistes and songs have changed with the times. With new artistes popping up almost every day, the music in Nepal has changed a lot.

In the past, the people of certain ethnic groups used to sing songs that held their identity and values. Genres like the Tamang Selo, Salaijo, Dohori and Thado Bhaka were widely sung and popular back then.

Kauda and Salaijo were quite popular among the Magar community. People of other ethnic groups also practised if there was an initiator. Unfortunately, old genres are dying out.

Though efforts have been made to keep them alive by organising cultural programmes, western influences have overshadowed them.

With the introduction of western genres like hip-hop and rap in Nepal, we have witnessed vulgarity in songs. Singers these days are seen singing vulgar songs. Singers have been imitating the western culture where raunchy lyrics are considered normal.

Being music-passionate, I have listened to plenty of rap songs by Nepali rappers and pondered over the lyrics of their songs. What I have observed is that rappers are trying to be the prime focus by composing songs that hold vulgar meaning.

The audiences of the rap songs are mostly young people.

What the singers think is that they would become instantly popular if they composed something unorthodox.

But the singers should also think about the audience and the message that they are sending through their songs. From objectifying women to singing about drugs, Nepali rappers are disseminating a negative message, which is better avoided.

Music is basically for entertainment; but it can be used as a powerful tool to give a positive message to society. If we could use music in a positive way, we would be doing a greater good to a large number of people. Using music for cheap popularity—by choosing to promote sex and drug abuse—does not serve that purpose. We make the society we live. Let’s use music to build a healthy society.

Also, the young generation should not ignore the music that holds their norms and values.

The time has come to preserve our culture, and it is possible through music.