SOCIAL ENTREPRENEUR ABHAEY SINGH ‘TALKS IT OUT’ WITH NEW VIRAL RAP VIDEO SENSATION
The video, however, has become a sensation outside India as much as within the country, having received over a million views on YouTube shortly after being uploaded, with a higher ‘like ratio’ than the global viral megahit ‘Gangnam Style’. Remarkably, Abhaey has arranged, written, composed, conceptualised and directed the video at his first attempt, and that too without any formal training in any of the above disciplines.
This social media phenomenon, in addition to being a showcase for the refreshing style of entertainment that Kauzala, Abhaey’s day job and new social enterprise company leads with, also doubles up as a promotional video for the Indian Debating Union (IDU), a unique concept delivered by the firm’s not-for-profit organisation, Kauzala Foundation.
The IDU was set up by Abhaey to encourage the wider adoption of organised debate, and to inspire the youth and broader public of India to become more involved in addressing the country’s pressing social issues. Kauzala is the Sanskrit word for ‘respectful present’ and reflects Abhaey’s and the firm’s approach to adding meaningful value for its customers, and having ‘social output at the core of all of our activities’. Kauzala has interests in real estate and education, and uniquely Abhaey views the firm’s new entertainment business, Kauzala Entertainment, as a social enterprise in its own right. Music and films have long been used as a medium to carry social messages to audiences and some have become cultural reference points for entire generations. In the same vein, Talk It Out – Debaters’ Rhapsody has instantly struck a chord with a global audience with its pertinent and universal message, evoking praise from viewers as diverse as a member of the Oxford Union to a post-revolution Tunisian youth leader, and a prominent writer in India to teenagers from America’s Justin Bieber generation.
Despite being set entirely in India, the track has effortlessly crossed international – especially Western – cultural and age boundaries as few efforts from India’s entertainment sector have been able to in the past. Abhaey has used spoken word to address social issues in his debut song, but where Talk It Out – Debaters’ Rhapsody is unique is that it is rap in its true form – it literally is ‘rhythm and poetry’. The track has already sparked comparisons between Abhaey and some of India’s greatest composers, and his lyrics, or poetry, has been universally lauded for its originality and depth. The composition is the first to be released as part of Abhaey’s debut music album Salvo!, produced by his independent music label, Kauzala Music. Other songs in the album, which is to be released in its entirety later this year, are sung by some of India’s most respected and prominent singers including Guinness Record holding legend Asha Bhosle, Richa Sharma, Sukhwinder Singh and Neeti Mohan.
Abhaey has received hundreds of comments from all over the world, complimenting him on the video and message contained within it, from a diverse range of viewers and public personalities. “I am honoured and grateful to have received this level of support. It gives me confidence that we are on the right path, and I am buoyed to do much more. I have always believed that entertainment is a powerful medium through which one can sensitise large numbers of people, and that this power must be used responsibly – especially during difficult times such as those we are facing in India and for that matter throughout the world. ‘Talk It Out’ is just our first baby step in this industry and with our socially-focussed entertainment model, and I am now focussed on scaling up this endeavour.’ With ambition, energy and creativity in abundance, Abhaey plans to take his Kauzala brand and IDU to new heights with a long-term development plan to gather momentum for both his social enterprises and his Foundation through a host of integrated sponsors and strategic partners, who, like Abhaey, share a desire to make a collective difference. ‘We are all going to leave this world one day. I have no plans to leave large amounts of money lying in my bank unused, nor to just hand out all of my earnings to my future progeny. There is a big world out there, with a lot of problems: I want to make a difference in my lifetime and business and my Foundation are my chosen vehicles to do so.’