You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘pop-folk’ tag.


For anyone who is even slightly observant to cultural trends, it is obvious that one of predominant themes in American cinema, TV, music, and commercials is violence. There is blood, blades, or bullets in almost every American blockbuster and computer game. Violence is simply part of the pop culture and no one seems to find it overly shocking any more.

Chalga-hip-hop singer Ustata in a commercial for Nestle ice-cream. Surely many little boys and girls will eat ice-cream this summer.

Sex, on the other hand, is taboo, and eroticism is an ancient art that exists only in Europe. Sex connotations are censored on TV, and movies with nude scenes often receive more strict parental guidelines (the sign that tells you if the movie is suitable for 12-year olds or 16-year olds, etc.) than those with killings. Lately, it seems that pop culture is becoming even more puritanical, like in the Twilight series where Bella and Edward will consume their love only after their marriage, or in Dear John where Savannah and John kiss and hug, but she still waits for him for more than a year to return from the war.

I don’t understand why Americans try to conceal sex so hard and still display so much brutality and bloodshed. Doesn’t it seem contradictory and maybe hypocritical? Probably the origin of the media sex-eclipse is the religiousness of many powerful American Christian denominations and sects. The saturation of guns and violence in pop culture reflects USA’s constant fighting and wars somewhere in the world, which have become part of the Americans’ daily lives just like action movies.

I go to college in the States, and I can tell you that someone’s attempt to keep youths pure from the sin of sex is absolutely in vain. Violence, unfortunately, seems to be engrained too deeply in politicians’ minds.

The commercial for mastika Peshtera with chalga singer Maria contains the lines "They are so big and juicy," which refers to the watermelons to go with your drink.

In Bulgaria, sex comes before violence. Sexual images inundate our pop scene, fashion, TV, magazines, and billboards. The young generation’s pop idols, the chalga stars, are platinum-blonde supermodels with silicone boobs and lips. One can mute their music videos and watch them as near-porn movies.  Girls age 7 to 37 love and imitate the chalga stars. Our TV commercial slogans go: “With licking comes the appetite” (for Nestle ice-cream), “Erases the memories” (for vodka Flirt), and “It’s the season of the watermelons” (for mastika Peshtera liqueur). Our young women like to carry themselves as provocative and sexy, which has brought fame to Bulgaria, and especially our sea resorts as destinations for alcohol and sex tourism.

Despite the abundance of sexual imagery, Bulgaria is not a sexual inferno really. Young people are liberal in their views, but there is no baby boom or STD epidemics (with the notable exception of the Roma people whose numbers are going up while the average age when their women give birth for the first time is in the early teens; but Roma culture is different from ours).

So this is what I’m confused about: How can it be that something so terrible as violence has been turned into a cult in America, while something so natural as sex has been stigmatized as taboo?! Simultaneously, how can it be that a country that greatly values traditional family relations, where homosexuality and abortion are still sensitive topics can have such a vulgar and sexual pop culture?!


Versai Club, Sofia

BBC featured Bulgarian pop folk music, chalga, in its Close-Up series: Bulgaria’s special brand of folk music.

I’m surprised to hear the inconsiderate and disrespectful language of the journalist, who seems to be mocking this popular cultural phenomenon in my homecountry. I wouldn’t necessarily argue that her facts are inaccurate, but in the context of the Bulgarian reality, they are more innocent than what she describes.

What is more, chalga and modern Balkan music as a whole (because this type of music is typical not only for Bulgaria, but also for Greece and Serbia) do not deserve such a belittling attitude, especially from someone who is not familiar with our mentality and culture.

In the video, the journalist pays a visit to Sofia’s Versai club (obviously on a weekday night judging by the number of people) and interviews chalga singer Elena. Take a look and feel free to give your feedback!

Watch the BBC video

Enter your email address to subscribe to Zikata's blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 70 other followers

Follow me on Twitter!

Share this Blog

Share |
April 2017
M T W T F S S
« Jul    
 12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930

Read it? Rate it!

RSS Getting curious:

  • Australia's Clemenger BBDO Is Most Awarded Agency at D&AD
    Clemenger BBDO's grotesque road safety sculpture campaign "Meet Graham" and Channel 4's 2016 Paralympics spot "We're the Superhumans" won multiple honors at D&AD in London on Thursday evening, a clear sign that they could also be among the big winners at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity in June.Alon […]
  • More Marketing Ahead for Under Armour After Its First Quarterly Loss
    Under Armour is having some performance issues. The Baltimore-based sportswear company had long been on an upswing with consumers, but a challenging retail environment, along with rising competition in the too-trendy athleisure space, is taking a toll. When reporting its first-quarter earnings on Thursday, the brand listed its first-ever loss and cited weakn […]
  • The 11 Best Trump-Inspired Ads From His First 100 Days
    .caption.medium { width: 300px;} Continue reading at AdAge.com
  • WPP Digital Buys Deeplocal in Commitment to 'Future of Advertising'
    WPP Digital, the digital investment arm of WPP, has acquired Deeplocal, a move that Nathan Martin, CEO of the 53-person shop, said shows that the holding company "sees the potential in an agency like us and the future of what advertising is going to be."Deeplocal, one of Ad Age's Small Agency winners and Creativity Innovators last year, refers […]
  • Watch the Newest Ads on TV From Target, Geico, Fitbit and More
    Every weekday, we bring you the Ad Age/iSpot Hot Spots, new and trending TV commercials tracked by iSpot.tv, the real-time TV ad measurement company with attention analytics from 10 million smart TVs. The New Releases here ran on TV for the first time yesterday. The Most Engaging ads are ranked by digital activity (including online views and social shares) o […]

Your Green Eyes

Ad