(Disclaimer: this is a work of fiction. Learn to take a joke; you’ll live longer.)
The nation’s cultural ecosystem was thrown into a veritable tempest when Saleem Hassan, a renaissance man the likes of which the country hasn’t seen, said that he preferred the original version of the song over the Coke Studio version.
Hassan, a towering intellect with little or no taste for the mainstream music that ‘sheep’ listen to, said on Thursday that the original version was more ‘soulful’ and ‘true to itself.’
The newer version, feels the connoisseur of the arts, has ‘ruined a classic.’
Hassan, a humble accountant by day, and a demigod of a critic by the evening (and sometimes, yes, during day office hours) is revered by many for his scathing and incisive insight.
“I really love the Coke Studio version and I think they’re done a great job, barring a couple that were sort of okay,” said Fahimeh Zaidi. “But when I heard this intellectual giant say that Coke Studio version is trash, I was enthralled.”
“When I asked him why he thought so, he gave a very articulate and thoughtful answer,” she continued, recalling her time with one of the 21st century’s leading cultural critics. “He said, and Lord forgive me if I can reproduce Saleem’s facility for words: buss faarigh sa tha naya wala. Original wali baat nahi thi.”
“This brilliant insight has overawed not just the music listener in me, but also the woman in me, who is still trembling and weak in the knees by her recent proximity with a man whose raw intellect lends him a sophisticated sexual energy,” she said. “Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to catch my breath.”
“I want to be like him,” said Asher Butt, looking at Saleem from across the office. “Oh God, I want to be like this man.”
“Yes, the original Nusrat version was quite something,” said Saleem Hassan, with a slight smile on his face while leaning back on his chair at the office.
Doesn’t he mean the Muzaffar Warsi version, which was the actual original, asked The Dependent’s correspondent. “Yes, yes, the Muzaffar Warsi version,” he said. “I said Muzaffar Warsi; you thought I said Nusrat because the names Nusrat and Muzaffar Warsi sound so alike.”