The social and the traditional media have been awash with numerous reactions, some very critical of Ghana’s female songstress, Ebony, over her song, “Bedi Me Dwa”.
This song hit the airwaves not quite long but it has shelved Patapaa’s “One Corner” song which many thought it was going to last until next year.
But while many see her lyrics as profane, others are of the view that the Bedi Me Dwa is a normal word being used in our everyday life.
I have listened to the track over and over and I am of the view that, there is nothing wrong with Ebony’s Bedi Me Dwa.
It relates to everyday life of ordinary Ghanaian in a market trying to make a living. The lyrics give inspirations to traders and not what many Ghanaians have turned it to be.
As a literature student, I like listening to music a lot, especially love music. That is why the ‘Mundial and the Maestro’, Julius Kojo Antwi is my favorite musician in Ghana.
At the tender age of five, I started writing Kojo Antwi’s songs to make sure I know the lyrics, can sing and can get the meaning and the contest in which he is using those words. As at today, there is no single song of Kojo Antwi that I cannot sing, write or know the lyrics, including the one he just released, the “Supremo”.
Not Kojo Antwi alone, but Lucky Dube as well. So I don’t just listen to music but I listen and criticize the lyrics as well and I can tell you, no musician in Ghana sings profane song than Kojo Antwi. But he covered them with idiomatic expressions and proverbs. For example, a portion in his song, ‘Adiepena’, says “me pe se me kai wasene awhenie”, to wit, I want to count the beads on your waist. Listen to Kojo Antwi’s “Mere Dware” and you would know that it is profane. So not Ebony alone.
Now let me now take the opportunity to give readers the lyrics in the first and second stanza of Ebony’s Bedi Me Dwa: The rendition is in English, Pigeon and Twi.
“I have been hustling in the morning, in the afternoon and in the evening.
Besen Kowhe na sika nni fie.
Enti me whehwe nia mene ebusua bedie.
Nniamaa me ton yi, mehu ano.
Sika aa me pe yi, mehu ano.
Chorus: Enti Mo Ndi Me Dwa…
I have been watching from a distance.
Girl you dey hustle ebi like say you no dey get chance
Ewia ketee na wo te mfifre
Ne ninyaa fre kakra yebedie
Emma waban mu mbuo
Gyai su oooh
Me ba abede wo dwa
Ma ne abu so oooh
Chorus: Enti medi woo ooh, medi wo dwa….”
Folks, diagnose the lyrics and tell the world which of them does not relate to a typical Ghanaian who is trying to make a living.
Whether you sit in the office, sell on pavements or streets or in the markets, or whether you are a farmer, the lyrics in the song relate you.
The only issue with the song is the chorus and even that, it is on the lips of every trader in a market. Visit any market in the country and listen to the women calling for customers to come and buy from them in twi, mo mbe di me dwaa oooh.
This is what Ebony is trying to portray. She just played around the words.
In our traditional setting, if someone is a ‘thieve in a community or home, the moment something gets missing, the community perceive him as the one who had stolen the item, even though it may not be the person.
There are several musicians in the country who sing profane songs than you, but because of how they carry themselves and how they go about it, society do not bastardize and castigate them, but because of how you carry yourself, that is why your Bedi Me Dwa song has brought all these wahala to you.
Let me at this juncture borrow the words of Pope Francis “Who am I to judge?”, when he was asked in Rome in July 2013 by an Italian Journalist, Andrea Tornielli on how the pope will act as a confessor to a gay person.
Who am I to judge you? Never! But I believe you can tone down exposing too much of your body. We love you and we want to see you rise to the top. But we want you to tone down on the exposure of your body because children are watching.
The African society respects women who keep themselves neatly covered and we want the society to give you that same respect as we help you rise to the top.
Keep given us good music. We are behind you. But the only thing we want now is the dressing.
The writer is an Editor/Producer [Onua 95.1FM & TV3 New Day], Media General Group but views expressed here are solely his and does not in any way reflect the position of where he works.