Pakistani, Indian artists team up to celebrate South Asia heritage
Pakistani singer-songwriter Rataba Yaqub (L) and Indian artist Abhilasha Sinha. – Instagram, Roots and Lasers
Born in Saudi Arabia and based in Pakistan, singer-songwriter Rataba Yaqoob is one of the most talented artists of this decade. She went national with her selection at Nescafé Basement followed by Pepsi Battle of the Bands. Rutaba and his music group, the Roots, didn’t win the top prize at the competitive PBOTB but found a loyal audience.
It seems that 2022 is the year that Rotaba will take the lead. A sign of this can be seen in the number of their songs. These include a collaboration with Indian artist Abhilasha Sinha for a song called “Nazar/Soorma”.
The song was intentionally released last month as part of celebrating South Asian Heritage Month. The two artists had never met but were well aware that music transcends borders and harnesses technology. The music video is surprisingly strong with a clear idea driving it. The sonic side fits well into Rutaba’s growing discography and is full of synth, electro, and dancehall vibes.
She seems open to trying new things as evidenced by releases like “Annawala Kal/Ghabare”, “Deer-Afuk”, and “Nazar/Soorma”.
Talking to Instep todayRutaba explains her Indo-Pak collaboration song ‘Nazar/Soorma’ and how it came about.
“The story behind ‘Nazar/Soorma’ is a discussion of how we would be or how we would behave and live our lives if we knew that no one was watching us, no one was judging us. is or no one is expecting.”
Many, many social media platforms, biometrics, metadata, drone sightings/attacks from above, space militarization and CCTV cameras define the basics of the modern age.
Big brother is always watching.
Rank is not just talking about elder brother. As she explains, our behavior, our surroundings, and the people around us affect us in subtle and obvious ways.
“Everything we do is reactionary and sometimes it involves losing yourself and realizing that you are not who you really are. If there were no external factors, you would be completely different.
The story Rutbah is talking about can be found in the lyrics of this song.
Urdu lines that start with a song can be overwhelming for those who suffer from weak Urdu. But according to Rutbah its meaning is based on a similar thought process.
“For no reason, without asking us, it’s so regular for people to give us their opinion or their criticism.” He is there. As for the collaboration with Indian artiste Abhilasha Sinha for ‘Nazar/Soorma’, Rotaba explained how the two artists are fans of each other’s music.
“She really understood the narrative of the song (‘Nazar/Soorma’) and wrote her verse for it repeating the same question(s) but in a different way. But she was also crafting a story to say that.” That we will break free and find the freedom to be ourselves. We are fast and we will thrive.”
The narrative of the music video is split-screen as it begins with childhood videos of both artists respectively. “We were sharing our home videos with each other and realized the similarities in each other’s childhoods. Even though we are borders apart, there are many similarities.
We are South Asian so birthdays and holidays were the same. And, because of South Asian Heritage Month, in August, we feel we should try to share those similarities instead of focusing on the differences.” Rataba, through his music, challenges the stereotypical aspect of music. has been and is deliberately taking risks, but in its own way.
“Honestly, I’m fine with being an artist who has a specific sound and doesn’t experiment all the time and do different things with every song.”
Rataba Yaqub describes herself as a collaborative artist and ‘Nazar/Soorma’ is the latest example of this. The music video reflects the ideology of the song and although experimental and risqué, it is introspective and therefore sounds great. With a debut music album in the pipeline titled Kiryana Store @nostalgia, Rataba has the confidence and potential to reach greater heights. This is his third release from this album. He previously released an EP titled S**t I’ll Never Finish (2020).
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