Rehman does not replicate Waka Waka

Monday could have been a positive day for the Organising Committee, as a press conference held by them promised the unveiling of the Commonwealth Games anthem composed by Oscar winner A R Rahman. But the management suddenly decided against releasing the song, though Rahman was flown in especially for the event. On Sunday night, the Group of Ministers (GoM) had approved Rahman’s theme song after a three-hour emergency meeting convened by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Rahman had initially asked for Rs 150 million to compose the song, but settled for Rs 50 million after the management bargained with him.

 “It was a privilege and honour to compose this anthem. It is more special than anything I have ever done. I have cancelled all my prior engagements to prepare it and am extremely happy with the song that has taken almost six months to take shape. It is simple, calls out to a young India with all the fervour. I hope everybody likes it,” said Rahman. After being urged by the media present, he sang one line from the anthem — O Yaron Yeh India Bula Liya, which Rahman added “is a call to the nation”.
But the rest of the anthem still remains a mystery. People will have to wait 10 more days before the song gets airtime on radio and television. He said, “I can’t reveal the entire song since I still have to tweak some lyrics and include some more sound elements. But the song is about India, its energy, winning and not giving up in the face of defeat.”
Meanwhile, Rahman said he had read a lot of negative stories by Indian media about the Games. “I am sure this is not true. We are definitely doing a lot of positive things here. I hope those are also noticed,” he said.
Asked if the song would be anything like Shakira’s Waka Waka, Rahman said, “No. I am not trying to replicate Waka Waka here. It is a complex song with complex rhythm structures. I wanted to go beyond what already exists. It is a little difficult to explain, but I am sure you will like it once you hear it.” Rahman is also planning an ode to Mahatma Gandhi and the country’s rich cultural heritage at the opening ceremony.
Creative Core Committee members, including filmmakers Shyam Benegal and Bharat Bala and Kathak exponent Shovana Narayan, were also present.
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