The Many Problems With Badshah’s New Song ‘Genda Phool’
Why is Badshah being so lazy?
If you thought Badshah just remixed A R Rahman’s ‘Genda Phool’, let me tell you, this one is nothing like it.
Badshah’s song ‘Genda Phool’, trending on YouTube on number 3, which features the very beautiful and elegant Jacqueline Fernandez, presented itself with a whole lot to write about. Now before I go on and ramble about all those points, please watch the song and contribute to the millions of views this song has already garnered in just five days of its release.
If your feeling after watching this is, ‘Damn it’s catchy, I like it’ - you might not want to read any further. If your feeling is, ‘What the hell... my eyes and ears are bleeding,’ you are my audience and I know you are hooked. I know there might be some of you who like it but are still curious to find out what I have to say, then I have you hooked too.
Poo Poo Plagiarism...
Honestly, I am not someone who listens to a lot of folk music. But a dummy’s search through the internet will show you how music composers and popular artists of the world rely on amnesia of the general public to forget folk music and just lift tunes, melodies, songs and throw in some *dhinchak dhinchak* to get you to groove on that dance floor and fill their pockets to repeat the same. No, this is not an allegation. And yes, you are in full right to be inspired and remix the song. But there’s something called - credit.
According to the video link below, Ratan Kahar’s song was adapted by Swapna Chakaraborty back in 1976, post which, it made to a lot of Bengali films and music but credit always went to Swapna Chakraborty and not Ratan Kahar. A simple search on YouTube for Boro Loker Biti will take you to the original folk song, which can be heard in Badshah’s ‘Genda Phool’.
The comments section has quite a significant number of people pointing out the absurdity of not giving the credit for the lyrics to Ratan Kahar. Some even went on to point out how Badshah said that he will never make a remix, but managed to pull this off instead.
In 2019, when his song from Ayushmann Khurrana’s Bala made headlines for allegedly remaking the song without the rights being bought, Badshah clarified to a news portal:
“We made a song called Don’t Be Shy in Bala. And thank god I got this platform to clarify. Dr Zeus who is the original maker of ‘Don’t Be Shy’ was pissed. But I, as a musician would never touch a song. I was under the perception that everything (the rights) has been taken care of. Because this has happened to me. My song Wakhra Swag was remade without my knowledge. I was hurt.”Badshah
Now, Kahar is hurt, but he doesn’t have the money to take it up with Swapna or Badshah. He’s used to credit being stolen.
Yahan Se Male Gaze, Wahan Se Bhi Male Gaze
This is my contention with a lot of Hindi songs and not just Badshah’s song. However, right now because I am talking about this song, in particular, I would like to bring to your notice that in a general situation I would blame only the cinematographer for such filmography of the song, however, in this case, it’s a joint venture by Badshah and Tuhin Mukherjee.
When you have lyrics in - what’s supposed to be your definition of ‘rap’ (I would call it the *slowest* rap ever) - the song talking about the butterfly tattoo on a woman’s waist, no power in the world can stop a cinematographer from searching for that visual cue for eyeballs.
If I may, I would like to turn the attention of you ladies and men of the world to an English song that could have possibly gone SO wrong if not filmed right. I am sure all of you have heard Girls Like You. I love that song but I still remember when I first saw the name of the song in 2018, I told myself that lyrics of this song *could* be off. And to this day, I believe that the video of the song made it for me.
Now, all I hope for is that we can break from the shackles of male gaze when it comes to filming our songs and films.
Apart From the Stolen Lyrics...What are Those Lyrics?
Ek mahaan shayar ne kaha hai...
Chale jab tu latak matak
Laundo ke dil patak patak
Saansein jaaye atak atak
Aata maajhi satak satak
Bum tera gotay khaaye
Kamar pe teri butterfly
Body teri makkhan jaise
Khaane mein bas tu butter khaaye
I am sorry, “Bum tera gotay khaaye”? What? This is worse than Badshah’s song ‘Mercy’ which says, “Jaise hilti hai vaise mat hila kar.” And all of this in the name of rap. Time to log at those solid rap artists and if you don’t know what I am talking about, think about Murad from Gully Boy.
Honestly, Badshah should pay a hefty amount to Aditya Dev who helped him mix the song and beats for ‘Genda Phool’ and ‘Mercy’. There’s nothing more to ‘Genda Phool’ than the music and Jacqueline Fernandez bend in positions average human body can’t.
But is the onus on us? Wonder why we, the audiences, are still watching this in 2020?
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