Did you just hear an Indian classic track?

Desi ears must have perked up, when they caught the iPhone 13 launch video on Tuesday. While no one would flutter an eardrum if an Indian company (legally) used, say, a Beatles track or a Vivaldi tune in their ad campaign, catching the classic Rahul Dev Burman opening guitar riff of ‘Dum Maro Dum’, from the 1971 Dev Anand-directed, Zeenat Aman-starring hit, Hare Rama Hare Krishna, has got many iNdians squealing. Apart from a nice reach-out to potential Indian customers in a market where Apple has a 2% share – and buoyed by the company’s over-140% growth in India in Q2 2021 – iPhone 13’s ‘music video’ has British musician Footsie’s 2014 track ‘Work All Day’ playing. The East London grime artist – with grime’s potent mix of Jamaican dancehall and American rap with a dollop of British rave – indeed uses a sample from ‘DMD’. Footsie may have picked the RD tune up from music producer DJ Sukh (Sukhwinder) Knight’s catalogue of favourite mixing tunes.

So, the iPhone video pitch may not be the global evangelistic mission for classic filmi gaana that many of us think it is. Instead, it’s Apple selling their latest remix, with Footsie, not RD, getting a nice leg-up in the process. For the world to recognise and hum an RD number, we’ll have to wait for a global made-in-India product and its global marketing campaign.


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