The resulting video has gone viral, not only garnering more than 430,000 views its first four days but also impressing Khan, whotweeted the link to the YouTube video to his 13 million-plus followers.
“Chaiyya Chaiyya” was composed by Oscar- and Grammy-winning composer A. R. Rahman(Slumdog Millionaire). The track was featured in a sequence in Dil Se featuring Khan and a troupe led by actress Malaika Arora Khan dancing atop a moving train. “Chaiyya Chaiyya” also crossed over to Hollywood when it was used in the opening and closing credits of Spike Lee‘s 2006 filmInside Man with Denzel Washington.
The Jackson mashup project came about after American artists Kurt Hugo-Schneider, Sam Tsui,Shankar Tucker and Indian vocalist Vidya Iyer met up at the second YouTube Fan Fest in Mumbai in March.
Hugo-Schneider’s popular YouTube channel features his productions for various artists, including vocalist Tsui. One of their earlier popular videos features a medley of Jackson songs rendered by Tsui, whose vocal style is similar to the King of Pop. Tucker is a clarinetist and music composer known for his online music series The Shruti Box, which fuses jazz with Indian music. His collaborations with various artists include Iyer.
The “Chaiyya Chaiyya/Don’t Stop Mashup” video begins with Iyer’s upbeat rendition of “Chaiyya Chaiyya” followed by Tsui’s take on “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough.” The video shows the artists at various Mumbai locations, including the city’s latest landmark, the Bandra-Worli sealink.
Last year, another Jackson track was given an Indian twist. Timed with the Indian release of Jackson’s posthumous album Xscape, the first track of the album, the Jackson-Justin Timberlakecollaboration “Love Never Felt So Good,” was reworked by the Bombay Flip Project, an ensemble of four young artists. The cover version included English lyrics interspersed with Hindi vocals, peppered with the sounds of the traditional Indian tabla.
Watch the “Chaiyya Chaiyya/Don’t Stop Mashup” video below: