Uncle Tadashi & Da Boyz’s “Better Days” is a combination track, alternating between throwback, old school soul, and contemporary rap. It also throws a jazzy saxophone solo into the mix. In other words, this track has much going for it. It touches on the groups outlook on the global Covid situation and how they see it.
Although some of its lyrics contain some unpleasantness, the song is ultimately a positive work. Its chorus, in fact, states, “These are the day/These are the better days.” However, the track’s first chorus also reflects upon what some call ‘the good old days.’ Perhaps one of the song’s messages, though, is how there are some good old days, no matter when you live. For instance, some of us grew up watching the sitcom “Happy Days.” It led us to believe the ‘50s were – as the show’s title suggested – filled with endless happy days. Of course, we also know this program was set in the beginning of the Cold War era. People may have slicked their hair back, rolled up the jeans and listened to rockabilly on the jukebox then, but many were also living in fear that there could be a nuclear war at any moment. There’s nothing at all happy about all that.
Sonically, the song begins with keyboards, saxophone, and a male lead vocal. Its first verse puts the struggle for human unity into musical terms. “We’d laugh, try to sing in harmony.” Harmony in music is portion where every note matters. A song also sounds better when it includes plenty of harmony. Similarly, human life is better when each person, and each person’s voice matters equally, just like the notes in a harmonic musical phrase. The ones with the most money do not have the greatest voices. Even the poor people’s opinions matter equally.
About one third of the way through, the rap part comes on and includes a direct response to racism. “White, black, yellow, brown, I must say, you don’t discriminate.” This rap section is followed by another verse. Only this time, it’s a woman that sings it. It’s also a happy voice about togetherness, which ends with the couple singing together in harmony.
Uncle Tadashi & Da Boyz is an act described as “a unique & catchy blend of English, Pidgin, & Japanese lyrics.” Therefore, the group’s makeup also supports one of this song’s purpose — unity. These various members come from various backgrounds, with differing skills, yet come together as one to create music.
We all want better days. Nobody wants bad days. These good and bad days are not always the same for everybody, however. One person may be having a great day, while it might be the worst day ever for someone else. Therefore, there can never be across the board better days for all. Instead, the best we can do is try and make the days for those around us better by, for instance, not discriminating against them. By not bullying them, as well. Instead, we should do our best to live in peace with those we encounter and try to encourage them to do their best.
“Better Days” features a universal message; one we always need to hear. We need to be reminded that we’re all responsible for helping to make the world a better place. Even if this is in small ways, every bit counts. Covid has been a huge change for all of us but it how we emerge that matters.
– Dan MacIntosh