Throughout the centuries people have talked about pertinent social issues either through their novels, poems, movies or through music. The 21st century has seen the music industry talking about grave social issues that have taken a firm hold over society. While early novelists and dramatists used to subtly talk about social dynamics which they disapproved of, the current generation is blunter while talking about the social issues.
The pop stars, the rappers have unabashedly addressed some social evils and issues that needed catering and to generate awareness and weed out some evils. Pop stars like Lady Gaga, Alessia Cara and rappers like Logic, Childish Gambino, Dax have talked about social acceptance, ruthless violence, racism and prevention of suicide.
Lady Gaga through her song, “Born This Way” talks about the LGBT community and being comfortable in one’s own shoes no matter who they are for everyone is beautiful in their own way.
“No matter gay, straight, or bi
Lesbian, transgendered life
I’m on the right track baby
I was born to survive
No matter black, white or beige
Chola or orient made
I’m on the right track baby
I was born to be brave”
Lady Gaga, a rape survivor, has opened up about the post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) she had to suffer after being “raped repeatedly” at the tender age of 19. Her song, “Till It Happens To You” speaks about the gruesome effect of rape on the victim and the trauma which they have to go through. The song was an attempt to raise awareness against sexual assault which received critical acclaim.
“You tell me it gets better, it gets better in time
You say I’ll pull myself together, pull it together
You’ll be fine
Tell me what the hell do you know
What do you know
Tell me how the hell could you know
How could you know
Til it happens to you, you don’t know
How it feels“
The song “1-800-273-8255” by Logic ft. Alessia Cara and Khalid raise awareness about mental health. The video talks about the social stigma and disapproval that the LGBT community has to face from their own families.
“I’ve been praying for somebody to save me, no one’s heroic
And my life don’t even matter, I know it, I know it
I know I’m hurting deep down but can’t show it
I never had a place to call my own
I never had a home, ain’t nobody callin’ my phone
Where you been? Where you at? What’s on your mind?
They say every life precious but nobody care about mine”
Childish Gambino through the music video ” This Is America” raises awareness about the gun violence, racism and brutality of the police authorities in the USA.
“This is America
Don’t catch you slippin’ now
Look at how I’m livin’ now
Police be trippin’ now
Yeah, this is America
Guns in my area
I got the strap
I gotta carry ’em
Yeah, yeah, I’ma go into this
Yeah, yeah, this is guerilla, woo
Yeah, yeah, I’ma go get the bag
Yeah, yeah, or I’ma get the pad
Yeah, yeah, I’m so cold like yeah
I’m so dope like yeah
We gon’ blow like yeah”
“Black Lives Matter” by Dax talks about racism and the ruthless homicide of George Floyd by white police officer Derek Chauvin
“See nobody’s born racist man it’s something you learn
Deep-rooted in your brain from the day of your birth
I think it’s time that we repair All of the bridges we’ve burned
And let love out of our hearts onto cheeks we turn
Spread love, show love, let’s get rid of this curse,
Don’t wait for anyone to act man you go first
400 years wasted let’s get rid of this hurt cause that’s the only way we’ll ever see peace on earth”
These popular songs are just a few of the many social awareness songs available. Artists are representing the socio-political situation and various social evils that need to be weeded out from society through the power of music. Music is such an influential tool and big artists talking about their personal experiences like sexual assault is instrumental in bringing about a gradual and influential change in society. Bricks are laid one at a time and music is healing and reforming the world one brick at a time.