In The Age Of Gully Boy, Should We Tolerate Disgustingly Sexist Rap Like Yo Yo Honey Singh’s?

Posted: April 7, 2019
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When we have such wonderful rap like that from Gully Boy that we can groove to, why are we still letting the likes of Yo Yo Honey Singh’s Makhna get our eyeballs? Time we trash him.

Jumma Chumma de de…. Jumma Chumma de chumma…. chumma de …na a na a.

I was chatting with my sister on our usual round of weekend catchup, when we remembered our childhood days and this song came up. And as usual YouTube sensed I was missing my childhood days; it popped up the song immediately.

Listening to this after several years of knowing better, the song made me literally cringe! I had to hide it from my toddler who seemed to be warming up to the idea of the proposition Mr Bachchan was making to lady K.

Nostalgia is an overrated piece of crap!

It’s taken us years to realize that the song lyrics in our movies are not only questionable they are downright cheap and just condescending. And yet it’s not enough. Talking of bad lyrics, Yo Yo Honey Singh is back.

Disgusting stuff!

The famous rap star, after a long hiatus has now come up with a song on Youtube called Makhna, another ‘gem’ released from his factory of equally appalling songs and lyrics that he churns out regularly. The song is similar to some of his older songs that has a bunch of Punjabi pseudo cool men hanging out on a beach analyzing a woman, and the entitlement they enjoy in commenting on her body. Phrases like ‘silicon wali ladki’, ‘brown girls’ and the ridiculous lyrics that follow… and yet the song has 19mn views in about 24 hours of its release. (In protest, I will not link it in here – it doesn’t need more popularity!)

Really what are we smoking?

Honey Singh boasts of a career that is unabashedly a sum total of some really terrible content. It’s a template of Punjabi rap music videos shot in super cool locations either in Canada or US or Australia where all Punjabis now supposedly reside. These videos always have a stunning woman as a prop and Honey Singh with his band of boys churning out innovative ways to objectify her. Looks like it’s the 80s again. With the selling point of a catchy tune or a catchphrase in every song, everyone from Bollywood to big music studios have cashed into the super success of the singer.

Just when there is a ray of hope with independent artists and movies like Gully Boy that reinvent music in a big way, there’s also this shadow of superficial pseudo cool pop stars that are breeding a different hormonally charged generation by the side.

Gully Boy brought forth the story of very sensitive and angst ridden young musicians who used their words to express and made the audience really think. Why do we then fail to stand up to Honey Singh, and instead yo yo merrily to his songs in a highly charged environment? What is it about him and his brethren that continue to have the audience at their fingertips and make the humongous business that they do? Well, whatever the dream he sells to a million youngsters, clearly the impact is huge, and even if he re-releases all of his songs this time shooting in different locations, they would still make as much money!

Ugh!

Honey Singh’s success is considered legendary due to his increasing popularity, catchy music, glossy visuals that made headway into Bollywood and literally lead every song. But what is worrying for his hormonally charged young fans is the nonchalance towards the misogynistic lyrics.

Picture this:

Main aur mere kalakaar
Sab baithke karein chill
Par main hoon womanizer
Mujhe akele mein mat mil
Silicon wali ladki ko main pakadta nahi
Brown Girl se mere dil bharta nahi
Gori-gori skin ke liye main marta nahin
Kyonki main hoon sher
Ghaas charta nahi
Tu hai patlisi naari
Par mera weight ho gaya hai thoda bhaari
Tu hai jaanti main hoon shikari
Tujhe kha jaoonga sari ki sari
Kyon ghabaraati, baatein chupaati
Paas bulake, door kyun jaati
Din mein tu mil chaahe mil mainu raati

I am not sure where to begin with even correcting this song! The women in his videos clearly don’t have a say. They don’t even mouth a NO. I wonder what is it that seems fine to the 19 million viewers here.

Grow up, Mr Singh!

Female representation in any Hindi movie/ video is now a crucial aspect, considering the amount of trolling it receives. Everyone in the visual medium business have now made decent progress in having strong female characterization, but clearly Mr. Singh is oblivious.

In an era where we are rediscovering our love for music in the most unassuming manner, with independent artists from different corners and strata making headway into world music; where a boy from Kurla talks about caste politics, gender issues, poverty issues through his rap that is enchanting and inspiring, this is beyond tolerable!

We are at a crossroads to choose who our artists are. Should music be about this image of a beefy punk or a group of them looking down a woman’s body reminding us of our horrific culture, or should it be it about an ordinary guy weaving an extraordinary piece of art through his music of an amazing aspirational future?

Image source: YouTube

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I am the quintessential ya-ya girl, but also the silent rebel. I love fiction,

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