Keeping it real

11 June 2021 | Art and Entertainment

Over the years, social media have made it easier for people to engage or express their opinions on topical issues in our society.

With information being easily available, there has been a phenomenon that subtly compels public figures, including those in art and entertainment, to contribute to ongoing dialogues. Which is not necessarily a bad thing, as these people have the influence to steer most of these conversations to the right policymakers in the country.

However, in this piece I want to highlight the importance of people, especially music fans, managing their expectations from their favourite musicians and influencers. These people are not superheroes and they cannot bring about the change you want them to. It’s okay, and in fact more impactful, to just amplify by sharing, retweeting or reposting the voices, experiences and words of those who are actually involved in and have a history of fighting for topical issues. In the Namibian context such issues involve social justice, gender-based violence, Fishrot and more recently the oil and gas exploration in Kavango and its impact on the environment.

A lot of people expect the biggest musicians and influencers in the country to share their two cents on the above-mentioned issues and most of the times these musicians and influencers are not well informed on these matters.

When you have people speaking out on issues about which they do not have personal experience or factual knowledge, you end up with people saying the wrong things or just repeating statistics they googled or came across on their timelines. This is what leads to public figures posting photos of themselves with misleading captions they’ve copied and pasted from somewhere else. They do not do it because they care, they do it because they feel like they have to or their managers advise them to say something.

Managers need to stop letting the talent they manage express opinions on anything that’s trending. That is not how you stay relevant. I’m not saying influencers shouldn’t contribute to pertinent issues but they should do so when they know what they are talking about. The same goes to the fans: do not pressure your favourite musicians and role models to speak out about anything and everything.

In this edition, we sat down with musician elia da vincii to discuss his album that keeps attracting attention commercially. There is also new music galore as singers ML and Setson – The Mighty Dread released their albums this week. We also highlight the latest music videos that are raking in thousands of views on YouTube. I do not want to spoil it for you, so please enjoy this edition!

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