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> #bjscwinnerssowhite, and english speaking
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post Mar 29 2021, 03:53 PM
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let's discuss why this is still a thing in 2021 and so few non-white artists / non-english language songs actually manage to win

looking at the winners list half of it is white female singing in english x50 :')
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diva las vegans
post Mar 29 2021, 03:58 PM
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BuzzJack Platinum Member
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QUOTE(Qween @ Mar 26 2021, 09:45 PM) *
64/65 Eledan

18 Altyr Muunilinst

This post has been edited by diva thin muffin: Mar 29 2021, 03:59 PM
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post Mar 29 2021, 05:15 PM
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Surely it is at least partly down to the demographics that use buzzjack and their tastes? The site typically attracts lots of English speaking people who enjoy female pop music and that follows through into the results here.

I don't know the answer to this but are BAME musicians represented very well in the pop music space? ie are they actively promoted and pushed in the same way?

The language barrier is more difficult to transcend too I guess. It depends how important the melody and production are in the songs but it is bound to be more difficult to connect lyrically if you can't understand them - and let's face it, english speaking people aren't renowned for understanding many other languages.

From my own perspective, I tend to vote for more of the alt/dance entries and I often couldn't tell you whether the artists are from a white or BAME background.
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Iz 💀
post Mar 31 2021, 01:02 AM
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I'm a paragon so don't perceive me
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This is difficult to discuss without it feeling like I'm accusing people of bias, which I don't want to. People will like what they like. I, well, Dandy's correct with the languages, as I understand more Japanese I'm starting to love and connect to Japanese songs more which I'm sure will be great for my future prospects here happy.gif Lyrics are really important to connect with to elevate a song above the pack.

Atomisation of streaming service algorithms probably plays a big part, you mostly only get recommended the same sorts of songs you're already listening to and I think I've noticed the effect of that bleeding through into song choices, more people than ever before sticking to genres they're comfortable with lately and I presume also voting in similar ways. Change is something you have to actively work towards, if you even want it.

I think language has more of a measurable effect (well, detritus) on BJSC performance than race, if only because it's far more immediately apparent to those who just listen.

For when the race of a singer is visible you'd need to do a study and even then you might just have to come to the conclusion that the styles of music often done by black and Asian people are less popular here than those often done by white people and I don't know what to do about that other than to keep giving different types of music exposure and acclimatising people to types of music they're not used to. It'd be very boring if only a few genres dominated forever.
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post Apr 2 2021, 04:54 PM
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In a contest like this, it's logical in a way that the song with the most crossover appeal will win.

The biggest crossover for the demos on this site is mostly: 1) english-speaking 2) female 3) with a pop or dance element 4) that's catchy and accessible

Naturally, a song that hits all of those demos is most likely to consistently do well and/or pick up votes from the different 'blocs' that go for each of those.

There's probably also an element of selection bias if people are consciously entering tracks that chase those categories and avoid others. Perhaps an interesting side contest would be to set parameters that the language couldn't be english, or (is there some kind of diversity day in the UK that it could fall on?) that artists entered had to be POC.
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post Apr 2 2021, 09:18 PM
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we have done two Foreign Language spin-offs before, although both were years and years ago so a third one I agree would be interesting – although we of course had a foreign language themed Club Bizarre not so long ago!

Black History Month is in October (in UK/Europe) so that may be the best time for a POC artists contest in the same way that we'd had Pride spin-offs in June.

and my winner from 2 contests ago was from a French speaking artist!!1 (the song was of course an instrumental)
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post Apr 2 2021, 09:28 PM
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I see right through your paper soul
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Neither of my winners were white or English language xx
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post Apr 3 2021, 09:25 AM
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I like diversity of genres and diversity of origin, and as I'm not bothered about winning I feel free to pick stuff I think is interesting rathe than stuff which will be popular. I do think modern streaming encourages the "more of the same" which is thrown at you as international behemoths target you with what they think you will like. Want to know how good they are doing that? My youtube habits are completely unpredictable when it comes to music, but the impact is instant - pick one genre and you get bombarded with similar suggestions. Pick another and then a different batch of suggestions. And I'm being deliberately awkward because I am not an algorithm I am a human being! Doesn't stop them trying to parcel you into categories for advertising cash though.

That said, I love good pop so I'm never going to stop liking that either, and while I'm not such a fan of rap/grime/whatever acts I will go for them if they are doing something different and creative or positive - Like Lil Nas X's country crossover was. My fave rap tracks are from long ago, mostly. I have entered rap, though, and am aiming to cover as many bases as I can in my entries with the aim of showing off showing how much fun quirky stuff can be.

So, because winners tend to be white female pop, folk who want to do well will naturally assume those sort of entries will do well - but it can work against you, if everyone does it - like semi 1 last contest where I got so fed up with nice pop dance that I reacted against it and gave extra points to those that entered something unusual - end of the day, that's the only policy that will work to make it more diverse: reward those that are interesting (but themed contests are also worthwhile!).

PS I''m going archive Swing next entry to boost Iz's DNQ-defying attempts to give a profile to electroswing smile.gif
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post Apr 3 2021, 05:56 PM
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Very happy to have both my winners be non-English language tracks - in languages I can't actually speak either! I firmly believe that a good song transcends language. Like, do I understand Polish? Naw, not a word. Do I absolutely lose my SHIT every time I hear Kokosanki? Hell the f*** yes. The vocal & melody are fab and that instrumental is just stunning. So I don't generally buy into the argument that you need to understand a song lyrically in order to connect to it or appreciate it. Lyrics are only one part of a song, and BJSC clearly has no problems with instrumentals.

For me the primary example of the joys of this contest its that through BJSC I have discovered Gabrielle and she is now one of my absolute favourite artists. I still don't understand Norwegian, i mean I understand more now that I know more German as it is a Germanic language, but I can absolutely appreciate the artistry involved and sure I have google translated some of the lyrics over time but I was hundreds of listens down the 5FF rabbit hole before I thought to translate the text (I haven't got round to translating any of her most recent record yet and probably never will). I still couldn't tell you what a word of it means and it's now one of my most played songs of all time. (Din Soldat is the second highest behind Freak Like Me and the only thing I can translate is the hook "let me be your soldier" and that hasn't stopped me listening to it 750+ times)

Defo get and relate to what Iz says though about familiarity of a foreign language broadening your music pool in that language. I have been actively took an interest in German language songs and DACH artists since I first moved here in 2018 as part of my cultural integration - and to help me learn the language by being exposed to more accents and Jugendsprache. Plus music is an excellent way to see how a language and its grammar functions in a more real life setting. Like what verbs/articles can be shortened for example. That I am now so much more exposed to this music is defo part of why I am sending it really frequently at the moment and will continue to do so.

I will also freely admit that there is a LOT of tracks that I hold back from entering to BJSC because I just can't be arsed seeing them languish in the Semis because they're not in English.

Tricky subject. I have re-written this post so many times in the last 50mins so that I don't offend anyone or anything
QUOTE(dan::G @ Apr 2 2021, 11:18 PM) *
we have done two Foreign Language spin-offs before, although both were years and years ago so a third one I agree would be interesting – although we of course had a foreign language themed Club Bizarre not so long ago!

Black History Month is in October (in UK/Europe) so that may be the best time for a POC artists contest in the same way that we'd had Pride spin-offs in June.

I am not against either spin-off you suggested happening (for them both) but solving the problem goes deeper than the tokenism of a spin-off. Especially as spin offs are selectively participated in.
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