Music is a powerful tool
A universal language that can break down barriers and deliver hard-hitting messages that would otherwise be rejected by its intended recipient, music is emotive, soul-stirring and relatable.
So when the Metropolitan Police were looking for a way to deliver their anti-violence campaign in the hope to reduce impulsive violence in the UK, they knew to reach its target audience it needed to cast aside the traditional PSA format and channel it through a music-related art form.
Enlisting the talents of MOBO Award-winning contemporary gospel rapper Guvna B, the MET have put together a campaign that sees the talented wordsmith speak to the youth through poetry in a new video clip.
Encouraging them to think before they act, in the video Guvna B starts off by saying:
“Anger is an interesting emotion/ My teacher used to tell me I could control it/ But I never listened/ I just thought to myself, ‘little does she know about the thoughts I keep on my mind in prison’.”
With a real focus on the anger and general aggression that leads to acting on impulse and people then making a life-altering mistake, Guvna B’s words are thought-provoking to say the least.
Over a haunting backdrop made up of solely piano keys, he continues:
“She would say to me: ‘When you get angry count up to 10’/ The problem is when I got punched in the face in the playground I forgot about my teacher’s counselling/ And when my dad passed away I couldn’t mask the pain/ The roots ran deep so I’d get angry about the tiniest thing every other day/ You see anger’s a natural emotion but can be dangerous in motion/ It puts intelligence in a headlock/ Your brain in a dead spot/ Next thing you’re reaching for the bat like a Red Sox.”
With an increased pressure on both the government and police to tackle the rise in crime the UK has faced this year – it’s the worst in history for street crime, especially in the country’s capital – this creative format to deliver the message that the violence needs to stop is one that speaks volumes, literally.
Ending his message, Guvna B says:
“A toxic potion of rage, embarrassment, shame/ But how long until I make a mistake that I can’t change?/ About 90 seconds/ About 90 seconds for anger to pass/ 90 seconds until I’m back in charge/ About 90 seconds to search deep in my heart/ And think, ‘What’s it gonna be?/ Either I get the best of my anger, or my anger gets the best of me.'”
The Metropolitan Police anti-violence campaign is being supported by WPP, who have generously provided creative and production for free.