The Message of Katy Perry: Roar

The official Katy Perry music video “Roar” was released on Friday, 6th September 2013, and has currently received over 34 million hits (views) in just over 3 days.

While there may be some thoughts around how the actual video undermines the message of the song, the video remains true to Katy Perry style. I do think that the video challenges the current thought on the role and function of females in society. In the video she has to step up to the plate in a jungle of predators of which she is not ready for or equipped to face in absence of a strong Indian Jones male figure. But she not only overcomes her fears but eventually faces them and even tames some of them.

But what is the message of the song? According to Perry, the name of the album, ‘”Prism” is about self-reflection … the message is basically about standing up for yourself … sometimes you are the one that is the biggest bully to yourself … it’s you bro!” A report, though has stated it has something to do with her relationship with current boyfriend John Mayer, but whatever the motive, the message remains stand up for yourself and don’t be trampled upon.

“I got the eye of the tiger, a fighter, dancing through the fire” is reminiscent of the lyrics of the 1982 song by Survivor titled “Eye of the Tiger” which featured in the film Rocky played by Sylvester Stallone, a typical underdog who ends up being “a champion.”

In the midst of youth abuses and with the amount of negative influences on our young people, Katy brings a positive message to our youth and considering her history it is good to know that she recognises the need to fight for your voice in society today even if it means by challenging and overcoming yourself. It is also interesting that she says, “I went from zero to my own hero.” In today’s climate it’s not always easy being okay with yourself in the midst of the pressures to be more like the cover of a glossy magazine or the latest pop or Hollywood star, that heroism has to be an internal value.

Negatively, I think that often young people don’t know how to stand up for themselves and might resort to avenues of “roaring” that might not be socially acceptable and right. It is all too apparent that young people do not have the necessary life experiences to know how to go about standing up for themselves, as evidenced in the increase in youth violence, suicides and the list can go on.

I do think, however, that we still need to help our youth in stepping up to the message in the song. Youth ministry should be about helping young people developing a positive self concept even it is via positive media to affirm this processes as a self concept is often defined by what we look like, who we date, or what resources we have available to us.

“Roar”

I used to bite my tongue and hold my breath
Scared to rock the boat and make a mess
So I sat quietly, agreed politely
I guess that I forgot I had a choice
I let you push me past the breaking point
I stood for nothing, so I fell for everything

You held me down, but I got up
Already brushing off the dust
You hear my voice, you hear that sound
Like thunder gonna shake the ground
You held me down, but I got up
Get ready cause I’ve had enough
I see it all, I see it now

[Chorus]
I got the eye of the tiger, a fighter, dancing through the fire
Cause I am a champion and you’re gonna hear me ROAR
Louder, louder than a lion
Cause I am a champion and you’re gonna hear me ROAR
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
You’re gonna hear me roar

Now I’m floating like a butterfly
Stinging like a bee I earned my stripes
I went from zero, to my own hero

You held me down, but I got up
Already brushing off the dust
You hear my voice, you hear that sound
Like thunder gonna shake the ground
You held me down, but I got up
Get ready ’cause I’ve had enough
I see it all, I see it now

[Chorus]
I got the eye of the tiger, a fighter, dancing through the fire
‘Cause I am a champion and you’re gonna hear me ROAR
Louder, louder than a lion
‘Cause I am a champion and you’re gonna hear me ROAR
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
You’re gonna hear me roar
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
You’ll hear me ROAR
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
You’re gonna hear me ROAR…

Roar-or, roar-or, roar-or, roar-or, roar-or

I got the eye of the tiger, a fighter, dancing through the fire
‘Cause I am a champion and you’re gonna hear me ROAR
Louder, louder than a lion
‘Cause I am a champion and you’re gonna hear me ROAR
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
You’re gonna hear me ROAR
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
You’ll hear me ROAR
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
You’re gonna hear me ROAR…

 

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