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Tainted Gospel Music

By; Princess 

            Trap and drill music has caused immense discussions with many agreeing that it causes violence. Many studies, including the research by Lynes et al., (2020), have proven this to be accurate. However, other genres have come up and modified trap and drill music to a remarkable extent. An example is Don Walker, a contemporary artist whose music may be confused for trap and drill music. The artist’s songs may be similar in terms of beats and maybe the setting but it has many aspects that distinguish them from trap and drill music genre. The music is more like tainted gospel and not trap and drill. By tainting, it means that the music is not trap and drill as it does not promote violence or murder.

            According to Wilson (2020), a song is categorized into a genre based on its message, artist’s intent, and the video displayed. In trap and drill music, the message is geared toward normalizing immorality and openly promoting violence, drugs, murders, and other promiscuous activities. When this remains a fact, it is undeniable that Don’s music is not close to trap and drill music. For instance, in Don Walker’s song My Kingdom, the artist intends to address basic life issues such as friendships and how he feels about issues around that. He does not at any point promote violence.

            Although the tone in Don Walker’s songs may be forceful, it is only for the purpose of aiding the message get home. The artist is trying to enforce the interpretation and perception of the message using tone and emotional appeal. This aspect does not make the music genre to be trap and drill to any extent. To taint is to change something by adding something that serves as an impurity. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines tainting as another word for polluting. The artist refers to his music as tainted gospel music because it is not purely gospel but has incorporated many contemporary issues that would need address.

            As mentioned herein, the music genre of a song is partially determined by the artist’s intention. While writing his songs, such as The Kingdom, Don did not intend for it to be categorized as trap and drill music. This could be influenced by his dislike for music that promotes violence, murder, and other promiscuous activities Instead, he intends his music to be regarded as educative, constructive, and respectful. Listening to the song is enough to inform an individual of his passion for the educative aspect of the songs. Hence, the fact that the music is not trap and drill remains undisputed

            Many people lack sufficient knowledge of the aspect of genres and they encounter problems determining the genre of songs. For this reason, they do not understand the aspects to look out for to tell the genre of a song. The message is the most important aspect and in Don’s songs, no message advocates for murder, gang, violence and drug use. His songs are well composed, rich in message, and excellent in video and audio delivery. Anyone hating on him and the music should consider listening with an open mind to understand its message and other aspects that make them beautiful compositions.


Lynes, A., Kelly, C., & Kelly, E. (2020). THUG LIFE: Drill Music as a Periscope into Urban Violence in the Consumer Age. British Journal of Criminology, 60(5).

Wilson. (2020). A Few Songs as One. Fourth Genre: Explorations in Nonfiction, 22(1), 93.




Chicago's Trap and Drill Music’s Role in Promoting 
Violence in Kenya

By; Princess

In the recent past, debates on the controversial drip and drill music are believed to cause violence by presenting imageries that glorify crimes and violence. Researchers committed to examining the drivers of violence among the youths have highlighted the music genre as the significant driver. The origin of the trap and drill is attributed to a darker sub-genre of the 2000s to 2010s. Trap music was a subgenre of US hip hop that rose to prominence as urban music at the time. The controversy within this music genre arises from its content and association with drug dealers. The genre has made its way to the top of the music charts despite the increasing debates on its attribute of promoting violence. It has become an international genre, with many African countries, including Kenya, have adopted it and even making compositions of songs resembling the trap and drill. It has had noticeable effects on the youths but does not necessarily promote violence.

            Trap and drill music has become the sound of youths globally and is associated with urban and ‘youthful’ music. Since the rap genre traces its origin in the black communities living in America, it has a positive reception in African countries because people feel a cultural connection to it. Apart from the cultural connection, the reception can be attributed to its good beats and lyrical creativity. However, the fact that drill music contains sexual, drug, and murder content make it a debate subject. Even if it originated from gang activities, it does not make it right to continue to maintain the genre.

            While the content of the trap and drill music genre is not praiseworthy, insinuating that it promotes violence is crossing the line. Music is meant for entertainment, and it is not some sort of liberation or protest song that expresses the interests of the singers. Many people, especially in Kenya, love the music for its beats and entertainment ability. It is one thing to listen to a song and another to act as it says. In most cases, people stop listening, and sometimes they do not care much about the deeper meaning of the content. Very few people can be said to participate in violence due to the influence of music. There are many drivers f violence, but music should not be one of them. Using drugs is significantly different from singing about drugs. Similarly, there is a massive difference between murdering and singing murder content. Hence, it is arguably incorrect to claim that trap and drill music promotes violence.

            The Wakadinali band is the most popular trap and drill band in Kenya. It emulates the traditional singing mode used by the earliest rappers of the genre.

The content of the songs the band release is way beyond the social constraints set within the society. However, it has not to be used as a reference for violence. Youths who engage in murders and drug dealing are not always lovers of trap and drill. However, the fact that the music genre taints the image of people of African Americans is undisputed. After the genre's prominence, many people wanted to understand how it came about. In their quest for its origin, they stereotyped the African Americans and assumed them to be drug dealers and murderers. Even with this, the songs do not cause violence to any remarkable extent.

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