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Rohail Hyatt: King of Coke or King of Stock?

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Why reliance on Rohail Hyatt was a bad idea?

The new decade is here, and we are all hoping that it would bring a positive change in the field of music in Pakistan. However, the chances of that happening anytime soon are not that bright, because of our reliance on Coke Studio, Pepsi Battle of The Bands and other non-original platforms. Yes, Coke Studio did produce original music when Strings were there but not anymore, especially since the return of the King of Stock. We are talking about the one and only Rohail Hyatt who was fond of copying songs back in the late 80s and early 90s and is still making a living of doing the same, thirty years down the line. Junaid Jamshed finally decided to go solo so that he could do original work, and a good one too for that matter. Let’s take a look at Rohail Hyatt inspirations that he localized for Vital Signs’ benefit, but damaged original compositions and music in the longer run.

Rohail Hyatt’s version: Goray Rang Ka Zamana
Original Version: Kalay Rang Da Paranda

The first place Coke Studio looks for inspirations is folk music, and Rohail Hyatt is an expert in that kind of music. An expert of the wrong kind who got away because there was no YouTube in the days of Vital Signs. Gori was an inspired version of age-old Kalay Rang Da Paranda and went onto become a huge hit in Vital Signs’ first album. If you listen to the original, you will realize that the Vital Signs’ song was a ripped-off version than an inspiration. And all those who played the song without knowing its background back in the era can now reflect on it and smile.

Rohail Hyatt’s version: Ajnabi
Original Version: Girl On The Moon – Foreigner

Be ready for a shocker…  Ajnabi was as big a rip-off of Foreigner’s Girl On The Moon as possible. From the moment the song begins … till it ends. Thankfully, this number from Vital Signs’ second album wasn’t that popular. And we now know why!

Rohail Hyatt’s version: Naraaz
Original Version: Feels Like Heaven – Fiction Factory

After successfully copying songs in the first Vital Signs album, Rohail Hyatt was back. Here, he tried to use his experience to copy a popular song and make an original out of it. He did succeed in making a fool out of youngsters who had no clue about Western music but the rest knew. And now even those who missed it, know!

Rohail Hyatt’s version: Samjhana
Original Version: Red Red Wine – UB40

Another song, another copy. UB40’s song was around long before Vital Signs came up with Samjhana. It seems no one made them understand that whatever they were doing was wrong and the effects of their damage to local music would be long-lasting. It also encouraged youngsters to copy/paste before Microsoft Windows made it an option.

Rohail Hyatt’s version: Aitebaar
Original Version: A groovy kind of love – Phil Collins

This groovy kind of plagiarism broke my heart and took off my Aitebaar off original compositions. Junaid Jamshed was on top of his game in this Pakistani rendition that rocked the charts. But it would have been great had it been original and not something inspired by the West.

Rohail Hyatt’s version: Tum Door Thay
Original Version: The More You Live – A Flock of Seagulls

And when you were about to believe that filmi pop was one genre in which Vital Signs excel, you were proved wrong once again. By copying The More You Live, The More You Love, Rohail Hyatt shattered all such notions and came up with a song that was immortalized through Geetar ’93. It does make one wonder whether that show’s name was original or inspired?

Rohail Hyatt’s version: Yeh Shaam
Original Version: Terminal Frost – Pink Floyd

Yes. Yeh Shaam was not a tribute to Pakistan’s classical music but an update of Pink Floyd’s Terminal Frost. Disguised as a local song, it won our hearts and mind when in fact it was numbing them down. I can forgive the mischievous mind behind all the above-mentioned songs for anything and everything but not for Yeh Shaam. It was supposed to be our thing!

Also read: Coldplay ‘s 8th Studio Album Titled ‘Everyday Life’ Features Late Pakistani Qawwali Legend Amjad Sabri

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Staff Reporter

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