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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Pakistani Integrity and Self-respect Omelette:

I don’t think much about music. I enjoy it for what it is. A collection of pleasant sounding notes with some meaningful, decent lyrics usually does the trick. Music, like any other activity in human life should be meaningful and for the betterment of human condition.

Among this huge, ever growing, heap of rubbish that we call modern Pop/Rock music, sometimes you can spot real gems. A new Pakistani band called Begayrat Brigade, have released a new song, Aalu Anday. There is some guitar, a catchy tune, and three kids dancing like idiots in the video. My first impression after watching such videos is that rich kids in Lahore have nothing better to do. But then I hear the words “Mullah”, “Qadri”, and “Ajmal Kasab”.

There are many placards with various statements shown during the video. Most of them are humorous and liberal observations on Pakistani political scene. But these boys are challenging the very core of Pakistani reigio-fascist right-wing through a stupid song and dance. They are not happy that Qadri has been made a celebrity, Ajmal Kasab a hero. They also remind the listener that Mullah is an opportunist creature. A blasphemy of sorts. And on top of that, they mention the name of Abdus Salam, the Pakistani Ahmadi Nobel Laureate. And how fitting it was that his name was placed opposite the symbols of bigotry and hatred in modern day Pakistan.

Right.. Why would you invite the wrath of a very influential segment of Pakistani society while in pursuit of your showbiz dreams? The video ends with the lead singer holding up a placard displaying the words ”if you want a bullet through my head, like this video”. I admire their courage and hope that this song is only the start of a new wave of popular liberal expression in Pakistan.

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