Jun 26, 2009

Jai Ho?

Why "?" and not "!" you ask? Well, its because this song is really, really annoying me right now.

I don't mind the original version from the movie (the one in Hindi). Its nice, I'm not sure who sings it but they are good and like I have said before A R Rahman (the music director) did a good job but this is definitely not his best. Not after Roja, Bombay or even Saathiya. Anyway, so I don't have a problem with the Hindi song or with Slumdog Millionaire. The problem is with the slutty Pussycat Dolls version.

First of all, its stupid that they say "Jai Ho" and say "You are my destiny" because that is not what “Jai Ho” translates to but it's pretty much how they sing it.

Secondly, Pussycat Dolls? Sorry, no offence if you like them, but yuck!! Double yuck!

Thirdly, every store and every radio channel seems to have this song on loop. Lucky for me (not!) that I work so close to a mall, so I end up going to the mall at least once every two days and its hard to walk past a Supre, Cotton On, Ice, City Beach store (all clothes shops, for the non-Australians) without being assaulted by the song. Notice, I said "walk past" because the song puts me off so much now I don't even want to go into the stores! Plus I was listening to the radio and the commercial channels down here play it a little too much, so I switched to online radio and I couldn't get away from ‘Jai Ho’ online either.


I know many Indians in India have a problem with Slumdog Millionaire, I'm not one of them. But I wonder, is ‘Jai Ho’ even half as popular in India? I think a sudden increase in the popularity of ‘Jai Ho’ could also be because the Pussycat Dolls were touring down under. But seriously, I think the world can do without their plans for “Doll Domination”.

The song isn't really that bad but when any song is played a million times, it loses its charm don't you think? I don't know what it was like in other parts of the world, but this reminds me of Celine Dion's ‘My Heart Will Go On’ from Titanic. It isn't a bad song but when the whole world and its cousin wants to request it on the radio and on TV, play it at home, in the car, at parties, at nightclubs.... it gets a bit much. That’s how it was in India circa '97. Some people tell me that they can finally like the song again, now that the hype is dead. But the charm of the song died for me the day I heard the taxi drivers and auto wallahs obsessing over it.*

*Disclaimer: No offence to taxi drivers or auto wallahs a.k.a. drivers. Its just that, in India, these are not the sort of people who wouldn normally listen to an English song (because they don't understand/speak the language) but when they did too, it just meant the song had been really, really overdone.


Blue Floppy Hat said...

The original song was nice indeed, the opening hook is really catchy....but AR Rahman's done much better work for other films, ESPECIALLY his Tam ones (I have a copy of Oorvasi Oorvasi on tape somewhere...known in Hindi as Urvashi Urvashi). I personally thought O..Saya was a cooler song, but I suppose Jai Ho sounded more 'Indian'/Bollywood and ended up getting the Oscar.

But WTF, AR Rahman and the PUSSYCAT DOLLS? That's like throwing overripe fruit pulp into a martini. Wrong, just so wrong. And I listened to it on Youtube a couple of days ago, it really is awful. It just hasn't caught on here though, and I'm thankful for that.

Anonymous said...

I'm so with you! I can't stand the Pussycat Dolls. However, I do think they've done worse than 'Jai Ho'. ('When I grow up' being the song that I find most appalling given that my client base looks up to these idiots!)

And I had a few friends who did think 'Jai ho' meant 'you're my destiny' and were surprised when I told them the actual meaning!

Rahman's Roja and Bombay were sooooooo much better!!!

Oh...and if you want to get away from PCD, Triple M is the best station! Since they only play rock songs, it's not on their playlist. :P

Anonymous said...

@Blue: How could I forget Oorvasi. Thats one of my fav songs. Really glad the PCD Jai Ho isn't popular in India.
@Psych: Your clients look up to PCD huh? Yeh.. some role models they are! Thanks for the advice re: radio station. I usually listen to Triple J but will def hav a listen to Triple M as well. :)

Grishma said...

And here I thought I was the only one mentally scarred by PCD's rendition of Jai Ho. I know it's unfair, but I nearly had a stroke when I saw A R Rahman, the man I've revered and still do for years, actually appear in their music video. I can barely listen to the hindi version now without cringing.

Anonymous said...

Grishma: hahahaha. Trust me, there's plenty of us who hate this version just as much! ;)