If you think Pakistan’s music industry is dead, you are dead wrong! We have so many talented musicians who are doing wonders with their creativity; coming up with fresh and catchy tunes and mesmerising those who watch their music videos.
You know who I am talking about? No, not Rahat Fateh Ali Khan with his latest music album Back2Love — that is a rain drop compared to the tsunami of creativity that self-proclaimed princess-of-God-knows-where Annie’s song Tharki Sala exudes.
It is satire at its best; she speaks about being 16 years old (which she obviously was a decade back) and being harassed by men. People are going gaga over the song with comments such as “Hmmm ek dum sexy ho yaaaarz… lets meet plzzz” by Engineer Uzair and “Mujhe samajh nahi aya” by Princess Shona.
I applaud Annie for bringing up such an important issue. I know it must have been hard as my sources say the song has been written keeping her ex-husband in mind. At least, now we know how Adele’s ex-boyfriend feels.
Anyway, now on to the music video of this masterpiece that has been directed by veteran director Sohail Javed. I must say, he has done a great job. For a second, I thought this was Beyoncé’s latest music video, but no! It’s our very own princess of God-knows-where with a Ranveer Singh copy dancing around in slow motion.
I liked the set and art design of the video, especially the ladder and chains in the backdrop, as they seem to be metaphors for the ‘ladder’ of social classes and ‘chains’ of restrictions imposed on a woman in our male-dominated society. The most unsettling part of the video is Annie being surrounded by semi-dressed men as she sings away. She pushes and shoves them when they try to come close to her. I could feel the fear in her eyes — such drama and disbelief is hard to find in a film, let alone a music video. This is plain genius!
Let’s move on to another ground-breaking music video, which has helped revive the Pakistani music industry. This is slightly higher in budget as it is part of a feature film, but its originality and sheer creativity have made it the talk of the town. Yes, I am talking about the Pakistani rendition of the song Aaj Blue Hai Pani Pani. The version is so overwhelming. I dare you to watch it till the end, I dare you!
First of all, the lyrics are as deep as pani itself. I would highly recommend Gulzar to go through them and get inspired. One of the main reasons why the music video has made waves (pun intended) in our country is because of the hero and heroine in the song. So muscular, macho and handsome! And I am referring to the lady in the video. She looks like she can throw the man from Saddar to Defence — such intimidation that the pani in the video seems to be running away from her. The couple in the video have the chemistry that Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie share; some might even say they are the Laurel and Hardy of romance in Pakistan.
Now, to whoever says the industry is dead, show these videos and they will be equivalent to a bitch-slap of talent on their faces. I have no doubt that we will blossom as long as we have original and quality music like this. To the haters, I quote the wise words of a princess “Boloon go! Tujhse tu na aa kareeb, khud ko samajhta hai kya?! Tharki sala!”
Published in The Express Tribune, June 15th, 2014.