September 2: Singers and musicians in Bollywood have come out openly against the Commonwealth Games song composed by well known music director A R Rahman, says a media report.
It took six months and Rs 5 crore to make the song, but AR Rahman’s track is not exactly ‘Waka Waka’ or ‘Maa Tujhe Salaam’, people say .
AR Rahman’s anthem for the Commonwealth Games hasn’t gone down well with both fans and politicians.
While the song’s online popularity is nowhere near that of Shakira’s “Waka Waka”, which he famously claimed his tune would surpass, politicians and Games officials now want the 5 crore-track “recomposed”.
“Swagatham” aka “Jiyo Utho Heyo” which critics say has neither the pace nor the punch of “Waka Waka”, or the rousing quality of “Maa Tujhe Salaam”, has disappointed.
Ever since he posted links to the tracks on his social networking pages, Rahman has been flooded with unsavoury comments. The games committee’s unhappy too.
Vijay kumar Malhotra, BJP leader and board member of the organising committee (OC) claimed, “We expected a better song from Rahman.”
Former sports minister Shahnawaz Hussain, another BJP leader, said, “I respect Rahman for what he has achieved but the track simply does not excite me. No one in the OC likes it except perhaps Suresh Kalmadi.” Hussain demanded a re-composition after Lalit Bhanot, organising secretary of the games, insisted that people would begin liking “Swagatham” if they keep listening to it. “Either it’s good music or bad. There’s no middle way to evaluate the appeal of a 5 crore track, he can surely re-compose it,” he said.
THE LYRICS ARE RIDICULOUS
“ The problem is people are expecting way too much from Rahman. Let the guy be! I like the song musically; it is well arranged and he has sung it well, but its lyrics – especially the Hindi ones – are ridiculous. How can we go wrong with our mother tongue in a song that’s going to represent our country? In this also, I guess Rahman was forced to include some things by the politicians. How can politicians interfere in the making of a song? Plus, as he has charged 5 crore; that is not going down well with people. One can compose about 50 songs in that much money!” – Palash Sen
THIS SONG IS A CACOPHONY
“ I just heard a small part of the song and it seemed like cacophony. With due respect to Rahman, who has made some great melodies, this song is not reflective of the mood that is required for the games. It lacks the Indian flavour and the Indian touch that is needed to represent the country. It’s not even hummable! We still remember what Ravi Shankar did for the Asiad, but for this one, after so many years, I think we could have come up with something better.” – Geeta Chandran
5 CRORE FOR JUST A THEME SONG?
“ It is a bit slow, and I wonder how much it will connect with the audience. It is shocking to hear that the government has spent 5 crore on it. How can they spend so much on just a theme song? Chalo, Rahman ek badaa naam hai aur logon ki expectations bhi badi hain. Every artiste has to go through such comparisons”. – Kailash Kher
IT TAKES TEN MINUTES TO COMPOSE A TUNE
“Rahman’s work has always been controversial. But if you are truly inspired, it takes ten minutes to compose a tune. Given that it took him six months to compose it, something must have gone wrong somewhere! “ – Louis Banks
MUSICIANS CAN’T BE GREAT ALL THE TIME
“Musicians can’t be great all the time. We can go wrong. But even the audience needs to hear not-so great music at times. If they hear good always, they will not be able to tell the difference like they have now. It’s good to hear criticism, as that is how a singer grows. I personally like it, but whenever the masses don’t like it, they should come out and say so, we will improvise then.” – Sivamani
WHAT’S THE MUSICIAN’S FAULT?
“A song is a song; who says what doesn’t matter all the time. Likewise, Rahman made a song, some will like it, some will not. So what? I write songs, at times it is liked and at times not. But every time I write it with all my heart. What’s the musician’s fault?” – Swanand Kirkire
JUST BECAUSE IT’S RAHMAN, THERE’S HYPE
“Why isn’t anyone enquiring about Rs 5 crore being spent on the song? I think just because it has Rahman, it has been hyped up. I’m sure people have not even heard the song, but are still commenting. Moreover, there are so many talented singers in our country, and with 5 crore, we could have got some of the best 10-15 artistes to do the theme song. When they can yell in the Parliament for the quality of the games, why don’t people have a right to raise their voice if they don’t like the song?” – Abhijeet
IT OUGHT TO BE GREAT ’COZ OF RAHMAN
“ I haven’t heard it yet as I have been travelling. I’d love to hear it, though. After all, it’s Rahman’s, and it ought to be great. But then, people will form their own opinion and will criticise or appreciate according to their wish.” – Shankar Mahadevan
Mangaloretoday viewers are invited to post their views about Rahman’s Games theme song.