‘Tan a yuh yard’ easier said than done, says Tanya Stephens

Tanya Stephens

Tanya Stephens has been releasing a song each day for the month of April, but her new music is not what has most people impassioned.

The Gangsta Blues singer is receiving backlash for highlighting an unspoken reality of ‘staying inside’ during the coronavirus pandemic.

“All mi a seh is stop tell people fi tan a dem yard and don’t know weh deh a dem yard, because telling people fi tan a dem yard is not going to solve the problem,” Stephens said in an Instagram video. “Telling people fi tan a dem yard when you don’t even know if dem have a yard to go to does not solve a problem, so it takes a lot more to happen before you insist ‘tan a yuh yard’.”

Her post followed a live video where she admitted to feeling imprisoned in her home, and challenged those better-off to exercise compassion to those who are not equipped to comfortably stay at home.

“A man inna di ghetto weh don’t have a car, don’t have nuh money inna him pocket fi put no gas inna nuh car, don’t have no money fi buy no patty a Juici Beef, cya go no weh except which part him deh, weh yuh think him a go bloodc****t go? Him tired fi inna di house too,” Stephens started. “Mi lockup inna my house wid Netflix and whole heap a different sinting. Mi have distractions and mi have people fi talk to weh can give mi every level of conversation weh mi want and mi still feel f**king trapped inside deh to the point where mi come out and go inna di car and drive.

“We fi stop be hypocrites… you know seh yaa drive go down the road go link yuh weed man and get yuh spliff so why you a tell poor people seh dem fi go inna dem house fi lock up? Stop it. We need fi start work this out together and together doesn’t mean you instructing me or you giving me orders.”

While her peers are urging Jamaicans to “stay at home”, Stephens has added that “if you can stay in… and if you can’t stay in, reach out to somebody.”

She continued, “Just be safe, if something out deh fi ketch, don’t ketch it, don’t spread it… If yuh have excess give some to somebody weh don’t have so dem can stay in too, dats all mi a seh. Don’t be arrogant, don’t be ignorant, don’t be such a privileged person that you can’t see seh not everybody is in your position, that’s all me a seh.”