I am a 🇹🇹 by birth, but I currently live in Maryland, 🇺🇸. I still, however, acknowledge Trinidad and Tobago and its culture as home and the space in which I feel most comfy. One of Trinidad’s most renowned commodities is Trinidad Carnival and thousands congregate on the island every year for the annual festivities.
is an annual event held on the Monday and Tuesday before Ash Wednesday in Trinidad and Tobago. The event is well known for participants’ colo[u]rful costumes and exuberant celebrations. There are numerous cultural events such as “band launch fetes” running in the lead up to the street parade on Carnival Monday and Tuesday.Source: Wikipedia.org
The word Carnival is said to have it’s roots in Latin from a holiday known as Carnaval which was derived from the late Latin expression carne levare which means “remove meat” which signifies the approaching of a fast. Carnival is typically the Monday and Tuesday before Ash Wednesday which in the Catholic faith is the beginning of Lent.
For a while, I have been observing the numerous artist on Instagram and YouTube to view their new Soca songs for the Carnival 2019 season, and I must tell you what I see in several videos, and the song lyrics is a cheapening of the Carnival culture in Trinidad. Gone are the days of the greats such as Mighty Sparrow, Lord Kitchener, Peter Minshall and Calypso Rose.
Instead is only jam, wave, wine on she bumper & bam, bam songs.
Ah mean is only one bumper women have. The objectification of females figures during Carnival is not unusual, but I continue to find it awkward to view and absorb. Why do artists feel obligated to objectify women in a song? Why do women feel the need to participate in this culture? Is it about power, control, masculinity?
Influencers are Instagram users who have credibility and audience; who can persuade others by virtue of their trustworthiness and authenticity.Source: Pixlee.com
In the social media epoch, the Carnival experience is starting to expand beyond the borders of Trinidad and Tobago. You have InstaFamous influencers from Europe and the Caribbean being immersed in our culture. As a result, the Carnival experience is reaching an exponentially larger and younger audience than it did previously.
There are discussions online on the capability of foreigners -especially Caucasians – to accurately express 🇹🇹 culture. Are these influencers local enough, black enough to speak to the ethos of Carnival? I think irrespective of ethnicity and nationality everyone should be able to experience and engage in Trinidad Carnival.
Not all the soca songs this year are about the bumper and jump & wave. There are a few classics among the typical hype songs. Savannah Grass by Kes is one such song with a calming resonance and relevant introspective of the yesteryear of Carnival. No bam-bam here!
Leave your thoughts in the comment box below!