Updated: May 7, 2020
MUMBAI: The ongoing lockdown in India due to coronavirus has seen a lot of musicians releasing their songs. One such song is Habibi, made by a bunch of youngsters from different parts of the country and world. A brainchild of Bengaluru based music producer, Saahil Karmally aka Melli, the song is sung by international rapper Jay Kila, London’s Ritvika Sunku, and Dubai based engineer and rapper Hatem Mukattash.
Speaking about the song in an exclusive interview with Music Beat, Jay Kila said, “Habibi is a trilingual dance track, sung in Arabic, Hindi, and English. The goal was to promote unity through music. The idea was created by this music producer Saahil Karmally from Bengaluru. He composed the track and got me on board to rap in English, Hatem Mukattash has sung in Arabic and another singer Ritvika has crooned in Hindi.”
The song was in the making for the last six months but saw the light of the day at the time when the world needs more love and joy! “Melli had traveled to Dubai before the lockdown to record Hatem’s part. I recorded my part in Mumbai, and Ritika recorded hers in Bengaluru. Everything was coordinated online, and all four of us never met in person,” the singer further told.
On being asked, how they managed to match the beat of the song, the rapper who has a unique style shared, “It was a lot of back and forth. Karmally was sending us tracks and he is the one who has put everything together. I had recorded my part and sent it to him. He then told me some changes and asked me to fix them. Once the drafts were getting close to being ready, we would meet on a group chat on WhatsApp and discuss, and that’s how Habibi came about."
The New York rapper, who moved to India two years ago, is happy with the response received.
“The response has been great! People are loving Habibi, and the song has been getting a lot of press coverage globally. It has been doing good so far,” he exclaimed. The team of Habibi is planning to make a music video by compiling footage of ordinary people, showing their homestay during the lockdown. Jay Kila revealed, “We are working on its music video for which we are asking our friends, followers, and fans on Instagram to film and send their videos of being at home. We are, thus, compiling a quarantine music video of everybody.” The music video of Habibi might release within the next two weeks, informed the musician who is having a qualitative lockdown time. “Now, I don’t have an excuse for not working on music since I am at home a lot! Besides my music, I do a part-time job for a streetwear clothing company here. So, without having to go to the office, I have time to serve my purpose and record music,” shared Kila about his lockdown routine. He further added, “My routine has been a combination of trying to be productive and staying healthy and surviving indoor. I am trying to make use of the time and work on my music in this situation. It’s also generating a lot of thoughts about life and things, we take for granted, especially the small things.”
Lastly, Jay Kila gave a message to the people on the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
“Stay strong, don’t lose hope and download my mixtape,” he concluded.