Published: 01st May 2019
Rapper RcR just did an Odia rap song with transgenders. Here's why you need to watch it ASAP!
Rapper RcR feels that, "Collectively, one of the major concerns of India, in general, is unemployment." And this song addresses this issue
Empty election rallies, people tired of politicians' hollow promises — don't worry, these are not scenes from the recent elections (or are they?). Rather, it forms the setting of India's first rap song sung by transgenders. Madhu, Sarita and Nandini from Odisha collaborated with Amritsari rapper RcR aka Rohit Choudhary to create HattSalaa, a Hindi and Sambalpuri rap song that dropped just last month. Directed by award-winning director Shankhajeet De, the lyrics talk about the crisis of unemployability which concerns both transgenders and the youth of today. This cause is particularly close to the rapper's heart as well because he has seen it happen to many friends around him. "Parents take loans and invest so much in their child's higher education and later, when the child is unable to get a job, due to no fault of their own, the parents and society taunt them," says RcR who is currently based in Mumbai. Which is why when he received the invitation to collaborate, he took it up in a heartbeat. "The government really needs to ponder over this," he implores.
Quoting Eminem, “I don't care if you're black, white, straight, bisexual, gay, lesbian, short, tall, fat, skinny, rich or poor. If you're nice to me, I'll be nice to you. Simple as that!" RcR says that we should all be nice to each other
The close to four-minute-long video blends Odia music with hip hop beats seamlessly. While the trio from Balangir — Madhu, Sarita and Nandini — own the Sambalpuri rapparts, RcR's Hindi rap will resonate with every youngster. "There's a certain anger and frustration in the youth regarding this issue, which I have tried to voice through my lyrics," says the rapper who shot to fame after featuring on Dil Hai Hindustani 2, a singing reality show. He travelled to Odisha for two days to nail the video and made several memories while shooting it, especially with the three musketeers. "I got to understand them better and empathise with them. Transgenders face double the problems and I had the chance to understand this. The atmosphere was light as they would tease me with nicknames like chikne," recalls the rapper and laughs. The 22-year-old goes on to say that, "They are also our people, we shouldn't think of them as others, though it is not exactly our fault we have been conditioned to think that way. But we at least can put a stop to it."
Striking a pose: RcR with his collaborators in Odisha | (Pic: RcR)
RcR may have several exciting collaborations coming up, but his journey has not been easy either. With a strong will and determination to do something in music, he was in a Qawwali group in school, learnt the guitar and then finally, he found his calling in rap while listening to American rappers Eminem and Tupac. Defining what rap means to him, RcR says, "Rap is not talking about intoxication or women, it's talking about who you are and where are you from."