Nigerian music is the most celebrated in Africa and even in some parts of Europe. At occasions in Nigeria, local tunes dominate the scene as guests who are entertained usually sing along and dance to the songs.
To capture their audience, artists and song writers employ different lyrics and some of the lyrics are coded in different meanings which involve corruption, sex, drugs and fraud.
Paradoxically, these songs are listened to by categories of people including children. Some adults who can decode the intended coded lyrics in the songs use it for communication when it suits them. But some children remain innocent to the lyrics. Their mind is pure.
It was therefore instructive when X3M Ideas, a Lagos based creative powerhouse put together a communication material for Nirvana water brand to mark this year’s Children Day, where the company underscored the importance of the purity of the children’s minds and the water.
The campaign showed an interview conducted with seven children, all aged seven years old. The purpose of the interview was to gain a deeper understanding of their comprehension of in-explicit lyrics and shed light on the innocence reflected in their responses.
The interview was conducted in a conversational and age-appropriate manner, ensuring that the children felt comfortable and understood the context of the questions. The focus was on their understanding of in-explicit lyrics, a topic that is typically considered inappropriate for their age group.
The children’s responses were remarkable for their innocence and lack of understanding. Most of the children exhibited little or no familiarity with in-explicit lyrics, and their answers demonstrated their innocence and purity of thought. However, the coded meaning were not explained to the children.
For instance, when asked about the meaning of the in-explicit lyrics “I’m coming,” one child responded, “I am coming to school.” Another child innocently said, “Can you wait? I am coming.” These responses exemplify the children’s innocent interpretations of explicit lyrics, associating them with innocent actions or expressions of positive emotions.
Furthermore, some children offered humorous responses to the in-explicit lyrics “chop my banana.” One child playfully responded, “Chop your banana before I chop it.” These answers further highlight the children’s lack of understanding and the playful nature of their responses.
The innocent responses provided by the children in the campaign have several implications. Firstly, they underscore the influence and innocence of age on a child’s comprehension of in-explicit content. The children’s limited exposure to in-explicit lyrics suggests that parental guidance and age-appropriate education play a crucial role in protecting children from potentially harmful media.
The proliferation of in-explicit lyrics in music poses a serious threat to the growth and well-being of our children. Exposure to explicitness content at a young age can have negative impacts on their emotional, cognitive, and social development.
The educative and enlightening communication material constructed by X3M Ideas for Nirvana is eye opener for parents to continue to protect the purity of the children. The 11 -year old agency is consistent in producing award winning materials.