Confronting Bodies: Malaysia Government
Date of Action: 1993
Specific Location: Malaysia
Description of Artwork: Malaysia teenage rap group 4U2C. Example of 4U2C's lyrics (sung in Malay) "... Hip Hop till Tip Top... Say no cigarettes, Say no cholesteral. Say no alcohol. Say no heart attack... "
Description of Incident: "... Teenagers love them. Therefore the music industry loves them. Even the Prime Minister is said to be a fan. But Malaysia's state-run television and radio does not think much of the country's latest music craze, 4U2C. Although they are allowed to perform - they are regularly mobbed by fans, mostly girls, at concerts - their songs are banned from the airwaves, and they do not appear on either of the two state-run stations." "The censors are mostly concerned with the groups strong "... Western image and their appeal to the opposite sex." Malaysian youth culture, as an official from the government's National Unity department points out, 'pulls in two extreme directions - one group which wants anything that is Western; another which says anything that is Western is bad... '"
Results of Incident: "... The ban does not effect tape or Cd sales. However, with Malaysia's limited market, the best an album can do is sell 10,000 units - a threshold 4U2C's debut album reached easily. 'The lack of airtime is strangling their commercial viability as a group,' says Man Senoi, the group's producer."
Source: Michael Vatikiotis, "Rapping in Malaysia, Far Eastern Economic Review," July 22, 1993, Pg. 33
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