Former cricketer Wasim Akram shared his thoughts on the current state of the hip-hop music scene in Pakistan during a lighthearted discussion on singer Fakhar-e-Alam’s talk show, The Pavilion. During the performance, Wasim even tried his hand at rapping, albeit in a way that reflected his skepticism about the direction the genre is taking.
The conversation started when Wasim said, “Everybody’s rapping these days, right? You hear it on the radio all the time,” hinting at the ubiquity of hip-hop in modern music. Fakhar took the opportunity to promote the legendary cricketer’s hidden talent, exclaiming, “Actually this is really good, I want you all to listen to Wasim, there is a fantastic rap song!”
Surprised, Wasim questioned, “But you’re a rapper, why should I rap?” Fahar replied, “You start, I will finish.” Despite his initial hesitation, Wasim eventually agreed, asking, “Today’s rap?” Fakhar responded in the affirmative, prompting him to emulate the style of contemporary rappers.
As he delivered a few lines, his effort seemed to be a playful take on the redundancy in modern songwriting, subtly poking fun at the minimal effort some artists put into creating songs that cover a mood without substance. “These are today’s songs!” sneers.
While Wasim’s on-air performance was meant to be lighthearted, it also highlighted a larger conversation surrounding the hip-hop scene in Pakistan. The emergence of hip-hop has transformed the country’s musical landscape, providing a new platform for artists and bringing about a cultural shift. It is a genre that is inherently inclusive, adaptable and accessible to local artists and audiences.
Wasim Akram’s dig into modern hip-hop, albeit in jest, highlights the persistent stigma and misconceptions attached to the genre. Rap is often seen as notorious, rebellious and equally revolutionary, questioning social norms and speaking to a generation yearning for a voice.
It is important to recognize that the expansion of hip-hop in Pakistan is a testament to the genre’s power to empower and connect with audiences on a personal level. Many young artists have used hip-hop to express their experiences, thoughts and feelings in a way that resonates with listeners.
While Wasim and Fakhar’s banter was not offensive, it serves as a reminder of the importance of recognizing diversity within the genre. As the hip-hop scene in Pakistan continues to evolve, it is important to respect the creative efforts of artists and recognize the genre’s ability to bring about change.
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