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A song for you, Narendra Modi

The Ska Vengers release a new video for their politically charged NaMo song

By Sonam Savlani  April 6th, 2014

Which NaMo song will you chant during the general election? Option A: The Ska Vengers’ ‘Modi, A Message To You’ – the Delhi-based reggae band has just released an animated video for their political song.  

“We’ve been recording the follow up to our first album over the last year, and we thought we may as well record the Modi song. We didn’t intend to put it on the album, but we figured we’d put it out at the time of the election,” says Stefan Kaye, keyboardist and founder of the band. “It’s going get us some bad reactions, probably some death threats over the internet.”

The video is the result of a collaboration between The Ska Vengers, Delhi-based filmmaker Ayesha Sood of the Jamun collective, and Kolkata-based animators Kunal and Tisha (surnames withheld). “We developed the [graphic narrative] together and in some cases it’s a more literal depiction of the lyrics,” says Kaye.

The lyrics by Taru Dalmia don’t pull any punches. Sample: Time to straight you right out, you should’ve wound up in jail. And he’s happy to let it provoke people so long as it meets its purpose of fuelling debate and discussion. “Self-censorship exists among artists because there’s a sense of fear – and we’re afraid it’ll only grow if Modi comes to power,” says Dalmia.

Option B: And if Option A doesn’t do it for you, you can always rely on this old gem. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VhAcO1rfTiU