It has been two weeks since it was released, but “Ntiza” single by Bruce Melodie featuring Mr Kagame has already left many people talking.
Reports in local media indicated that after the release of the single, the Rwanda Academy of Language and Culture (RALC) convened a meeting in which it was suggested that Ministry of Youth and Culture bans the song due to vulgarity.
The duo says the production of the song cost about Rwf11.2million. The audio was done by Producer Madebeat whereas the clip was shot from Kenya by Zoom Production’s Kenny, who normally produces superstar Diamond Platnumz’s videos.
The song’s melody is appealing but what has attracted a lot of comments are the lyrics the duo chose. In the chorus, Bruce Melodie presumably asks a girl to also “lend” him so that he could also “taste” since he is not dating anyone.
In yet another verse, MrKagame makes some proposals to a girl and boasts about his sexual prowess which he says the lady in question would never forget.
There is another verse in which Bruce Melodie asserts that he is saved, but the body pains, adding that the package of a star always comes in full.
The song sparked a major debate on social media with some saying that it is extremely vulgar while others say there is nothing wrong like most modern songs which are laced with sexual innuendos.
Modeste Nsanzabaganwa, the Executive Secretary of RALC argues that the lyrics, as well as videos of the song, contain vulgarity which is contrary to the Rwandan cultural values and norms.
“Be honest. When you look at the song, it really has no message whether it is the video clip or lyrics. Normally, we always expect constructive messages from songs, but when you look at that song, it is full of vulgar scenes which are very misleading to young people. The song is embarrassing to say the least and goes against our cultural values,” he says.
On the other hand, the composers’ stance is different because the intentions of the duo were not about making sexual advances but rather tell a story of an unromantic guy who is bizarre at dating.
“The inspiration came when I was discussing with my friends about unromantic guys who are bizarre at dating, guys who don’t know how to take things slow and just propose directly”, says Eric Kagame Mabano.
“To make it clearer, I used an example of someone dating a girl who is in another relationship,” he adds.
“The guy approaches and asks the girl to abandon her lover and instead love him. The guy convinces the girl that he can be better than her current lover. That is what the song means,” Kagame explains.
Additionally, Mr Kagame says that even if the controversies’ opinions were true, such a debate was not necessary since there are a lot of songs in Rwanda and the region which have even much worse insinuations in the words but have never attracted a similar debate.
“I do not understand how the song can be banned for public consumption, yet P-Square was invited here in Rwanda and performed ‘Do me” or Diamond Platnumz was invited and sung ‘Kwangwaru’ which are all songs with much sexualised messages than our,” Mr Kagame says.
Many on social media say the song carries no message and does not make sense but others say that banning it is not the solution.
Journalist and showbiz critic Janvier Popote Nshimyumukiza questioned why people look at culture in one angle instead of looking at it wholesomely.
“I wonder why people want to emphasise Rwandan culture when it comes to music only as if it is the most important pillar in the country’s development”, he tweeted.
It is not the first song to attract attention, following in the footsteps of “Ibyatsi” by Oda Paccy, “Too Much” by Jay Polly featuring several music stars, “Ancilla” remix by Urban Boys and “I do” by Charly& Nina featuring Bebe Cool among others.Follow ByishimoBertra3