Monday, June 28, 2010

Behind The Scenes at Coke Studio

Here's our behind-the-scenes footage from our performance on Coke Studio

Only a week left till our performance airs. I have to say looking at this footage I instantly went back to how amazing and wonderful the entire experience was. I'm so grateful that they had cameras rolling the entire time, because the whole thing went by in such a fantastic flash I was afraid I would forget how it felt. I'm not so worried about how the actual performance will turn out or what people will say. I know that the boys and I were part of a truly magical experience and in the end, thats the best anyone can hope for :)

You can check out the other behind-the scenes promos from the episode here

Also, I wanted to add that you guys have been really supportive and gracious in your comments. It means a lot. Thank you all.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

The Countdown to Coke Studio Begins....

Finally...after months of waiting....we're...gonna have to wait a little more...but we will be appearing on the next episode of Coke Studio that airs Sunday July 4th, 2010 at 10pm Pakistan time. Here's the promo!

Pretty exciting isn't it! We seem to be the only male artists on a girls night out...(with the exception of Arieb Azhar of course). It's pretty thrilling to be on the same program as Abida Parveen, Tina Sani, Sanam Marvi and Arieb. I'm really looking forward to Meesha's next performance, she seems to be the breakout star of this season's Coke Studio and rightly so, the few seconds of "Chori Chori" in the promo are spine-tingling...

The lead up has been excruciatingly nerve-wracking. I've been obsessively trolling comments on the Coke Studio facebook page and on youtube and twitter. I know it's bad for me but I can't help it. People have already started commenting on ADP without hearing a note we've played.

How are we going to do?

Honestly, it could go either way. Not a lot of people know who we are, so the good thing is there aren't too many pre-conceived opinions about us. People don't expect much from us. I think the extremely high expectations people had of the other artists featured in the previous two episodes led to some dissappointment and heavy critiquing. I ,for one, thought some of the reactions were pretty extreme. People expect to be wowed immediately upon viewing a song from Coke Studio, but these are the kind of songs that grow on you slowly. you have to download them and listen to them a couple of times before you get what they're all about. And of course you don't HAVE to like them. Everyone's got their own taste and opinions but the kind of fanatical comments I've been seeing on the internet are more than stupid. At the end of the day, it's really just music.

On the other hand, it's kind of touching to see how much Coke Studio means to so many people for them to be so extreme in their emotional reactions. I never really realized how massive the whole thing is. In many ways, its good that we Pakistanis can enjoy the luxury of debating on a musical program that has such mass appeal. It's the one thing everyone talks about the day after an episode airs. It's like cricket. It's bringing the nation together, invoking strong emotions and getting an opinion from almost everybody.

Which is why, it's slightly terrifying waiting for our episode to air. I've been advised to stay away from all media the day after it airs. But I know I won't be able to. I think our performance on the show was solid and had a lot of excitement, so at the very least I don't think it'll be boring. But I know it won't be for everyone. So far, the bands on Coke Studio, Karavan and EP have gotten the most criticism and so following that trend, we're next in line to get trashed. I'm bracing myself for that.

But for us and our fans, I think it's going to be something really special. We've put our heart and soul into this performance and I think it'll show. We've tried to be original and energetic and hopefully people will appreciate it.

So sit tight, there's only 10 days left......

Tuesday, June 15, 2010


As some of you know, I've been writing Op-Ed columns for The Express Tribune. Most of my articles have been, well pretty shitty by my standards. I feel like I've been playing it too safe, and a lot of the humor I'm trying to put across didn't get conveyed properly.My fellow writer Sami Shah feels that since I can't use the word "choot" in any of the articles, I've lost my writing ability. He may be on to something. Which is why I return to my choot blog.

So recently I wrote what I thought was a fairly innocuous article regarding "burgers". If you aren't familiar with the term, a "burger" is a mildly derogatory term for a person who is Pakistani but acts Western, i.e. listens to only western music, wears only western clothes, watches only English movies and speaks only in English, usually with a heavy American accent. Anything labelled "burger" in Pakistan is deemed to lack credibility because it/he/she is "out of touch' with the "masses" and "elitist". With the growth of the Internet and greater exposure average Pakistanis have to the world, this culture gap seems to be closing.

I realize that I would be a poster child for the so called "burger" section of society, and I have embraced this label. I thought it would be pretty funny to write an article from the point of view as a burger being part of a persecuted minority. Now as most of you smart people know, this is an obviously ridiculous premise. So I decided to have some fun with it mostly poking fun at myself and people I know.

Here's the article

As of the time of this writing, it now has 83 comments

Holy fucking shit. What is wrong with people?

You mean to tell me that my dumbass article about BURGERS AND MAILAS got 8 times more comments than Talat Hussain's FIRST HAND ACCOUNT OF BEING ON THE FLOTILLA where he GOT SHOT AT BY ISRAELI FUCKING COMMANDOS (I hereby will refer to Talat Hussain as "Flot-Zilla" from now on).

I sincerely thought I would get a couple of chuckles and the usual stupid comments from the readers who didn't get the joke. And sure it's the internet, people are born to be mean on it. But 83 comments? Its a tsunami of stupidity. Go ahead and read them, it'll make your head explode.

Sure I get some comments from people who appreciated the article for what it was, a light, brainless bit of fun. Sure some people just thought it was plain boring and stupid. Fair enough.
But MOST people decided it was the fucking coming of the Antichrist, accusing me of trying to incite class divide, being elitist, hating Pakistan, trying to keep the common man down, starting a war against Urdu etc.

Then there's people who claim to know me...."I used to think you were an OK guy OBA...until I read this article.....". What?? How did you think I was an OK guy? Because you read a bunch of dick jokes on my blog?

Then there's this gem

"the differenciation your trying to create is really making people like you not fit for this country,you are living in a bubble playing guitar in a studio or writing a blog sitting in your little box where you are unaware of the reality of 99.9999 percent"

Yes. Because real, patriotic musicians record music in a fucking wheat field using a water buffalo to do backing vocals. And yes, I stupidly write a blog in my little box, when I should be out, on the streets of Karachi with THE REAL PEOPLE dancing in my dhoti singing "Mein Bhi Pakistan Hoon" with my londa friends as we put our dicks in a plate of biryani.

I suppose I shouldn't complain because the article got a lot of traffic. But it's insane to see how people are getting so worked up over something as trivial as this. Yes I realize I'm a lightning rod for criticism (What?? A musician? Who thinks he's a writer? Well fuck him!!) but dude....?? People need to chill the fuck out.