Well, for a while at least. The world’s premier Hindi a capella group, also known as Penn Masala topped the iTunes “World Music” chart. In other words, their new album Kaavish is basically going platinum.
If you haven’t gotten the chance yet, now that it’s summer and the “kaavish” (Urdu translation: struggle) of finals is over you can totally check it out on their website, SoundCloud, or of course iTunes.
And if you’re still looking for a belated Mother’s Day gift, send her this Mother’s Day music video. A YouTube video in Hindi is the perfect present for the mom who’s got everything.
How appropriate! Hi, peeps. How’ve ya been? We interrupt your busy, rowdy (Neflixy, gluttonous) winter break with glorious news. As they have in years past, Penn Masala is journeying to India for the first half of January for five-stop a cappella extravaganza! We’d expect nothing else of Penn’s beloved Masala, and we’re sure Obama is kvelling just as much.
According to this article in IndiaWest, College student and Penn Masala singer Ram Narayan is suing JetBlue Airlines after he was erroneously embarrassed and escorted off a plane from New York to Portland last summer—a mistake, which he claims, was based solely on his skin color.
Narayan is being represented in this suit by well-known lawyer, Brandon Mayfield, who became somewhat of a household name when he himself was mistakenly linked by the FBI to the 2004 train bombings in Madrid. The United States has since issued a formal apology and $2 million settlement to Mayfield, and has deemed parts of the PATRIOT Act unconstitutional.
Tsk tsk, JetBlue. We love extra legroom as much as the next guy, but why you gotta be so heartless?
The article discusses the presence, prevalence and popularity (as well as preeminence, potency, penetration and predominance, if you will) of Bollywood/Billboard-Top-40 mashups among today’s generation of Indian American performance groups. Penn Masala, formed in 1996, “is credited for pioneering the fusion music trend that largely reflects Indian American tastes in the pairing of Hindi and Western songs.”
Long story short, the main takeaway from the article is that you can hit up Penn Masala on Pandora, Spotify and Grooveshark. So this finals season, you can finally say, “No, I am not still listening” to your Vitamin String Quartet station.
Let’s not dwell too much on the obvious: Spring Break is over and classes are back in swing. Both of those do suck, don’t they? But you’ll tough it out, chap! Think about all the fun you’ll have going through the new Facebook albums of that kid whose notes you borrowed in intro psych who went to Puerto san Playa Rico! And 32 days until Fling? Not too bad. Anyway, let’s talk about what’s happening:
New York Times blog The Choice, created to “demystify the process of applying to American colleges and universities,” will now also have some of its content featured on India Ink. And perhaps the only thing better than The Choice‘s South Asian expansion is the fact that Dean Furda, who you know from this, this and/or this, is part of the inaugural post.
Furda, along with regional director of Admissions, Patrick Bredehoft, chats in a mini Q & A intended to answer any inquiries that prospective Indian students will likely have about the admissions process. The run down: Penn is impressed by many Indian applicants and is down to continue increasing diversity. Also worth noting is the shout out to Penn Masala.
Obama loves Penn performing artists. (Remember the Poetry Slam?) Last night Penn Masala performed at the White Houses’s Diwali celebration. Former stoner/Penn prof Kal Penn provided the hookup, and the group performed two songs for the prez and his guests.
After being endowed with the UTB‘s Spicy Curry Award, I felt it my duty to inform Penn about the goings-on of the South Asian Community.
This Saturday, come support Penn Dhamaka (Penn’s first and only all male dance troupe) at the Merriam Theater as they compete against 11 other South Asian dance teams from around the nation at the 4th Annual Phillyfest Competition. At intermission, watch Penn Masala, which apparently is “the nation’s number one a cappella group” (Sorry Off the Beat).
South Asian dance competitions are part of a cult-like subculture that includes rankings, competitions, and forum trash-talk, and Phillyfest is one of the best exhibitions of this fascinating phenomenon. At the very least, come out to see the Indian version of your Jersey “guido.”