Now that I don’t make jokes at celebrities’ expenses any more, this leaves me with only one option: To be serious.
It does not leave me without the option to find their performances lacking sometimes. Truth is, a lot of you guys ask for it. You go and… Ooops! I almost used an image here that could be construed as a taking of the piss. Fortunately I caught myself in time.
Luckily for my moral centre, I have never taken a cheap shot, at least not to my knowledge, and if I said someone sucks I meant it. They performed below par and I took the annoyance that an audience member feels when he or she has been shortchanged out of their attention, time or money and used it to construct a snarky blog post.
However, since I discovered that I worry about hurting people’s feelings I can’t go around cavalierly alluding to suction power and asses and abysses and pits when I meet such performances.
This leaves me with just one choice. Offer constructive criticism.
So here we go. Starting with those who were previously my typical targets.
Rachel K is a Ugandan musician, radio presenter, TV presenter and blogger who also dabbled in music. She sold herself as a rock singer.
Criticism Constructive Type: You often go flat and off key when you sing. You are tone deaf.
But that doesn’t have to hamper your ambitions. If you listen to your producer you can easily make a successful pop song. Rock singers don’t always have great singing voices. Just keep within a small, safe range and let the bassline and chorus do their work. If there is a loud, guitar song with lush harmonized chorus in your name, no one will mind that you are not Whitney vocally.
A Ugandan musician who has done a lot of promotion for her work but too often the work wasn’t great.
Constructive Criticism: This is kind of redundant because she already figured this out, but since I’m talking about people I have poked fun at before, here we go. Stop over-singing. You don’t have to put so many keys into every phrase. Rein it in and you’ll be fine. But you already did that on your last song.
A TV presenter with a put-on American accent.
Constructive Criticism: The accent implies to Ugandans that you feel the regular Ugandan accent is somehow inferior, or cheap, or vulgar. As if to say Americans are cool and Ugandans are fake. This gets hackles up in America, too. People from who go to become presenters hide their natural regional or ethnic accents and “talk white” or they fake a generic urban middle-class accent which is presumed to sound more sophisticated. This annoys American southerners, Blacks, Asian or just poor people who say the speaker is trying to sound “white” because they feel they are “too good” for their own people. You may not feel this way, but that is what you are communicating and it gets people annoyed.
There is also the fact that you are doing the accent wrong. To do an American accent correctly you need to work on your enunciation and pay careful attention to the words. Pay attention to the vowels so that you can get the correct distinction between soft vowel sounds and hard vowel sounds (Like “cut” and “cat”) and also mark the letter r (“hot”, “hurt”, “heart” and “hut” for example).
If you must do the accent, try and do it correctly. You can even learn on the internet.
But you would be much better off if you just spoke Ugandan.
Host of Tusker Project Fame.
Constructive Criticism: Boss, you are taking yourself and us for granted. Just because you are a naturally funny guy doesn’t mean everything you say is going to be funny. It seems like you assume whatever you say is going to be amusing as long as you are talking. You should do some prep first. Sit down before the show, tap into your inner comic, plot and sketch some quips and lines and gags, practice with Sheila, rehearse a few times, then get on camera and blow us away. Don’t try to wing it. Get prep first.
Jimmy Jones 75
Constructive Criticism: Don’t waste my time.