Soulful, powerhouse singer Jen Awad triggers our moral compasses with her latest video for “Bad People.” Thought provoking questions pop up throughout, as we follow Jen on her journey from innocent to good to bad. It’s a kitschy, bubbly tale played out by wild personalities, but if you watch closely, you’ll find questions buried within.
With intent to engage the listener in a deeper way, Jen Awad’s video touches on the topic of mental health and gun violence. Directed by Liz Nistico, this vibrant story of two ‘bad guys’ taking Jen hostage folds us into a wider discussion of what ‘bad’ really means. For example, once Jen escapes her captors, she catches them mid-crime and threatens them with a gun. Jen (decked out in the ornate, original designs by Alessandro Francalanci) is able to save the day, but she then takes the ‘bad guys’ hostage herself. Just because someone does something ‘good,’ does that mean they are?
Despite the true measure of ‘bad’ or ‘good,’ Jen Awad sparks our wonder by asking whether we know how to appropriately deal with violent behaviors, mental health, and ethics as a society. When someone does something wrong, how do we treat them? Shall we show people empathy no matter who they are and what they have done? Jen encourages us to dig into humanity by showing a slide of questions at the end of the video:
“This music video is focused on gun violence in the US, as well as our inability to appropriately deal with mental illnesses. We hope to reform thinking amongst individuals in the US with the following Socratic messages:
- If someone does something wrong, are they bad? Should they be exiled
- What actions can be taken to reform a person if they do “bad” things?
- How can education be used to cast a net of wider acceptance and thus reduce self-inflicted shame, violence and guilt?
- What educational reform can exist alongside true reform in the US?
- Do you ‘run from evil’? Or face it head on? Are you in denial of the dark side of existence?
- “What can you on an individual level to create a space of non-judgment, love and acceptance around you?”
Jen Awad Show Dates:
7/11 Levitt Pavillion
8/21 Twilight On The Pier
9/14 Open Arts Music Festival
Words: Ariana Tibi