Priyanka Chopra’s highly-publicized musical debut has been in the news for over a year now.
*** DISCLAIMER :: My references to certain “famous” personalities in the span of this article are in pure jest. I do not wish to invoke a rebellion ***
IT’S FINALLY HERE!
After an antagonizing wait, our very own PC has finally released her first single In My City from her forthcoming album.
Priyanka Chopra will supposedly launch the album in December 2012. Apparently, she has collaborated with artists such as Will.I.Am, Sam Watters, Matthew Koma, Jay Sean and producer RedOne.
First and foremost, I want to pass a message to her naysayers. Despite what you think, do keep in mind that Priyanka is the first Indian artiste to venture into International Pop music. Coming from an acting background with no prior musical experience, one must acknowledge & applaud this brave step. Being a national icon and a role model to gazillions, it isn’t easy being in the spotlight where EVERY move of hers is judged 24 X 7.
Jumping directly into the song, Priyanka (who is also the lyricist) croons the lines in her accented voice with élan. Apparently, the song stemmed from the fact that Priyanka, who used to frequently move from one city to another because of her father’s job (an Army Doctor), could never label any of those places as her home UNTIL she settled in the hometown of Bollywood – Mumbai. Keeping this thought in mind, you can’t help but admire her efforts. At times, it comes across as an extended jingle to promote tourism in Mumbai. Will Shiv Sena adopt it as their official local anthem? (I am kidding!)
Check out the track for yourself:
Now that you have heard the song and formed your own opinion, why don’t we scrutinize four major accusations made against this track?
ACCUSATION 1 :: Her voice sounds way too perfect
All humor aside, Priyanka sounds like a dream. Now we know that dreams aren’t real. Similarly, at times, you can’t help but wonder how much Priyanka credits auto-tune for her amazing-sounding & immaculate vocals. Hey, I swear I am not amongst those naysayers but people talk and you cannot help but ponder over such thoughts. At the same time, it is barely a hidden secret that the usage of auto-tune is rampant throughout the world, let alone India. If she has made use of it (and I am not saying so), why should that be frowned upon? Think of all the live concerts you have been to and compare the sound of a live performer to his/her recorded track and voila! it doesn’t seem to be a big deal any longer.
ACCUSATION 2 :: The song, in its entirety, is mediocre.
To an extent, yes! I agree with this ONLY when comparisons are made with the other zillion International singers. People worship Justin Beiber despite a mediocre “Baby, Baby, Baby Ooooo!” so why not Priyanka? This is her musical debut, folks, and not everyone is bound to like it. Yes, I did expect something immensely phenomenal, but when I think about it, I cannot cite specific expectations. The song is extremely peppy, addictive and her emotions seem to reflect in the track. As an Indian (and a Mumbaikar), this song makes me feel proud of my city. If I had to compose a tribute to Mumbai, it would be on the similar lines.
At the same time, there isn’t a single shred of doubt that the primary tune seems to be rehashed version of those of Katy Perry (especially Firework), Lady Gaga, Taylor Swift and many more.
ACCUSATION 3 :: The lyrics are puke-worthy & she sounds desperate to make a mark.
Really? Personally, I think they are apt.
I know you got your own town, I know you got your own ways,
I know you got your own life, I’m just sayin’ C’mon down to my place.
(This affirms that she is not trying to make you an illegal immigrant and respects the fact that you have your own world in your own comfort zone.)
C’mon make some new friends, and tell me what you drinkin’,
I know there a place like home, but I know you gonna like it in my city
(A bit corny – true but with our ever-evolving life, our friends evolve too and that is how newer experiences & memories are formed.)
Everybody’s welcome here, Everybody’s welcome to my city,
We ain’t got no worries here, I know you gonna like it in my city,
Know you gotta a friend in me, You ain’t gonna wanna leave,
C’mon… You ain’t never had a party, Till you come to party in my city
(Mumbai welcomes one and all and once people come here, they fall in love with it. Saying that no one has worries here is oh-so-not-true, but understand the emotions, peoples! And of course – Mumbai’s parties are incomparable to those of any other city – especially, the rowdiness.)
I assure you, I have not been paid to say all this. If that was true, would I agree with the latter part of the accusation? Priyanka’s voice does sound forced throughout the track. The extra emphasis at the start of each sentence is a bit jarring but I am going to attribute it to the accent.
Also, Will.I.Am is utterly wasted (pun unintended!) in this track. His contribution seems irrelevant and more of a publicity gimmick.
ACCUSATION 4 :: Priyanka just wants to one up her contemporaries in Bollywood
Maybe so. I do not know her so I cannot defend this completely. BUT, take our very own Indian film-maker Farhan Akhtar as an example. The man started off his career as a director. Once he established himself as a good filmmaker, he moved on to the role of a producer and after backing a volley of hits, he explored his interest in acting. Finally, he moved onto singing and song-writing.
What I cannot understand is why every move of a celebrity is labeled as a gimmick. Sure, it partly might be one – I do not deny that. I aspire to be a film-maker, music composer, as well as, a producer someday. If, God willing, my dreams turn into reality, I would consider myself to have fulfilled my aspirations. Maybe, it is the same with Priyanka. Don’t judge!
Check out the making of this track:
All in all, I like Priyanka’s super-energetic track. It made me want to get up & dance. It made me want to scream the lyrics from my terrace. It made me proud of Mumbai and that is all that matters to me.
P.S. One person who might have major issues with this track might be the currently most-hated Mumbai cop, Vasant Dhoble. What is the bet that he will raid Priyanka Chopra’s house (with a hockey stick) insinuating that her song will result in more people coming to Mumbai and indulging in highly-immoral activities (read: holding hands) under the pretext of partying?
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