Reggae artiste Safira Mono is getting rave reviews for the theme tackled in her latest video, ‘Cruff Life’, which features a 18th century slavery theme complete with a Great House, sweating field slaves and white slave owners.
However, a hanging scene in the video has caught the attention of the Broadcasting Commission which is concerned that “exposure to graphic or sensationalized accounts of death, can endanger youth”.
Safira Mono does not agree.
“Cruff Life is a song for ghetto youths who are going through hard life and those who are fighting discrimination, rejection, oppression, racism, poverty, and slavery with righteousness. It won’t cause suicides, or romanticising of death, the hanging is about the victimisation of black people. We are still experiencing the after-effects of slavery, so the video is a commentary on that oppression, a kind of history lesson for the youths,” the artiste whose real name is Shockera Pinnock, said.
Since its release, the video has racked up over 100,000 views on Facebook, and popped up on the video countdown charts on the popular Street Link and FIWI Choice charts. However, one particular scene has ruffled the feathers of the Broadcasting Commission.
“The Broadcasting Commission has a problem with the hanging scene to the extent that Mello TV has said that they cannot play the video unless we edit it out,” she said.
The Broadcasting Commission is an independent statutory agency mandated by the Broadcasting and Radio Re-diffusion Act (BRRA) to monitor and regulate free-to-air television, broadcast radio and subscriber television (Cable) services. Mental health experts say that certain images in broadcast media could pose health risks for certain young people, such as those who have suicidal thoughts.
However, Mono believes that there is a unique opportunity to have a conversation about suicide and censorship is not the answer.
“If it is suicide they are worried about, this provides a valuable opportunity to discuss suicide risk with young people. In fact, publicity and awareness can actually push people to get help and identify warning signs instead of taking their own lives,” she said.
The music video was shot and directed by Wayne Benjamin, with the script written by Safira Mono herself. The video was shot at the Cherry Gardens great house. The single was released under the Frassout Records imprint and has been available on iTunes since August 25, 2017.
Safira Mono, who is known for the hit single,’ Monitor’, recently performed at the Marcus Garvey celebrations hosted by IRIE FM. She is a firebrand rastafarian fighting for righteousness in a decadent time.
“The battle continues, we are not destined to be cruffs, don’t believe the lie. We have to accept the legacy and then with that acceptance, we can break the chains,” she said.