By Mira Khatib
Many Arabs are getting an over dose from the so called musical video clip. Finally something useful taken from the pop music industry abroad. There is no shame in wanting to copy famous trends that proved to be financially rewarding especially to the singer, and numerous Arabian artist have indeed come a long way in adding value to music with their creative musical video clips.
To keep up with the world’s developments, trends and standards the Arabic video clip has improvised new styles whether in clothes or lack of them, story line or just mere quick flashes of baffling scenes and in unique acting skills of the singer. Many of the new clips even include educational components, such as foreign languages and foreign tunes after all if it proved to sell well overseas it must help sell in the Arab world even though many Arabs cannot even relate or understand what they are listening to. What other way for a singer to become internationally famous than to add international rhythms and words how else can we teach the world about us Arabs, it is only logical after all.
But one must give credit where it is due those singers sure put lots of effort and thought in their work, doing their best to provide the people with exquisite art, they are literally burnt out as we see them lying down in most of their clips and sometimes even in their beds! They sure pour out their hearts, dreams and desires all out there in full sight of the viewer. Not putting any boundaries or limitations even if they have to bare their souls or flesh, which is more exact and to the point.
Most people watch these videos without actually listening to the words, not that one can blame them, for most of those singers are hard and painful to listen to. As long as the clip is achieving its main purpose of working on the animal instincts of people rather than their high taste, is a reasonable deal. It is funny that women need to be included in those videos, exposing their bodies shamelessly, for what else is there to attract an audience, defiantly not the singer, his voice or his song. The shorter the dress, and the more revealing the blouse and the lustier the women are the better the outcome.
What really confuses me is the relationship of water in all of this. It seems many singers find the need to be drinking water, or be on water, in water, near water, or getting splashed with water or actually taking a bath or all of the above at once in their video clips to attract the viewer’s attention. After all whom better than us Arabs know the value of water!
I am sure many of us viewers want to thank those so-called singers, for providing us with such vast choices and variety. One can hardly keep up with the new faces and oddly voices that spur out of the blue onto the screens every single day, who are they? Where did they come from and what are they singing is not really important just as long as they are “genuine”. I mean anyone today can literally sing and make a video clip, all you need is the right amount of money, (and mind you that is not so much), and the will to put it out there, and you are on your way to fame.
Please don’t get me wrong, like any industry; there is the bad, the good and the ugly. I am not referring here to the many reputable and great singers that take their music and art seriously and work hard to provide only the best music that listeners truly can enjoy time and time again. I am referring to those intruders in the music industry, those who are so desperate for fame that they spare no cost ethically or quality wise.
Sure you can say if I don’t like it I don’t have to watch, you are exactly right. At first I must admit I cannot help but watch out of shock and to try to take in the even newer boundaries of ethics that are broken. Yes my curiosity also takes the best of me, “wow what is wrong with her lips? Did her breast get bigger? How did she lose all that weight? And what is this singer trying to prove helplessly trying to dance in an oddly fashion?
Once over this stage I reach the stage where I get sickened from these clips and yes only then do I change the channel. Having said that the latest video clips are a great conversation topic between friends, and there I verify another reason to update myself with such video clips, I don’t want to seem ignorant.
But what saddens me the most is the message these clips bring to our youth. Changing in their minds what is acceptable and what is not. If it is so bluntly shown on TV then why should we prevent those youths from following stage? How hard it is for parents to try to explain to a teenager that it is not OK to go out in a tank top and pierced belly button, and mingle casually with the opposite sex, most defiantly those parents will be accused of being old fashioned and not so hip and modern!
When all is said and done I believe that the viewers are much more intelligent than what the singer perceives or hopes for. Most of us Arabs are educated, with reasonably good taste and sensible common sense, therefore I am sure in time those so called singers and their video clips would eventually become extinct, or that is really my wishful thinking…yet I know I should think twice before wishing anything just maybe it would become a reality, and then those numerous musical video channels will run out of business and close down and how boring TV would be and what else could we make fun of? Not the news channels for sure…so I guess it is a two-way sword, and I should be thankful for the magic of the remote control that gives me power to switch off anything I don’t like.