Emerson Bockarie has hit the airwaves with a new album, Nine (9) Lives. The title of the album has no ambiguity and the tracks composed in the album make it have myriad forms of interpretations but all boil down to the several years of deception by politicians.
Nine (9) Lives can be an exaggeration of the proverbial ‘seven lives of the cat;’ meaning the cat can hibernate for as long as possible and then emerge unscratched. Its life goes on as if it had no difficulty treading on the earth full of cruel humans. For the ‘Last Man Standing’ or ‘The Iron Wae nor De Ben’ as Emerson prides himself on being beyond political and social vilification, the title speaks for itself. He was not cowed by the previous regime and he cannot be simply cowed by the present in producing his sensational, eye-opening lyrics.
And that brings us to the title of the main track on his album titled ‘Coconat Ed.’ Well, denotatively, coconut is a nut from the coconut palm, a popular nut eaten at leisure and also used to produce cooking oil. But beyond its denotative meaning lies a deeper one when ‘Coconat Ed,’ which means having ‘a small head like that of the coconut’, is given a keener listen.
Connotatively in our local parlance, having a ‘Coconat Ed’ means somebody with a ‘very small brain.’ Emerson says we have had enough of leaders bearing ‘coconat ed’ who fulfils but little of what they tell the public during campaigns. The country’s story has remained the same narrative since independence. The fabrics of society continue to rot under leaders who come and go with unimplemented manifestos or ideologies, with big plans but little deeds, with politicking, not real-time development etc.
But what have we as citizens done over the years to change the narrative? Emerson blames those that are still blindfolded by party politics; those that are dancing, fighting and cursing in the name of their party. We are still the people pampering the ‘cokonat ed.’
Touching both the present and past regimes, Emerson does not see any change, and instead, he says the present government has professed in what they were condemning their predecessor for-giving jobs to personal friends and family members, nepotism and misplacement of justice among others. Worse, youth violence is heightened and the use of force by our security apparatus unprecedented. What we see in this regime is each government functionary feeling bigger than his shoes (Gbagbati) and doing things to create more animosity in society. He cited the handling of land issues by the Minister of Lands as one such instance.
‘Coconat Ed’ does not see much good in the free quality education either, and challenges the ‘Coconat Ed’ families to send their children to get a taste of it. Are the numerous promises kept? Did the country make a turn around after 60 days as chanted on rooftops by the current minister of finance when in opposition? The much-tooted agricultural project is in shambles and hunger looms as ever. Can this regime end again with a blame game? These are all observations from the past that Emerson sees as very imminent with the Bio regime.
On how we can get over these problems for the country to raise its head above water, Emerson resigns our fate to posterity. But he still fears that the progenies have not come to maturity to take over the affairs of the state, and this has been since the days of our forefathers. What generation can then come to make a difference when all is engulfed in pettiness?
So for Emerson’s ‘Cokonat Ed,’ waiting has expired and the young have been adulterated by blind politics. What is needed is for the current government to change gears, accelerate development and to abate the continued suffering of the people.