By Nova Bleq
MY (SUPER LONG) ASSESSMENT OF PATATI PATATATA by ROKI ft. Koffi Olomide & Rayvanny. Took a moment to listen to Rhumba because I’ve been a fan of Roki for the longest, so I wanted to hear kuti Wagwaan.
His vocals in this song are similar to the range in Chidzoka. A lot of falsetto (if I’m not mistaken – Not too familiar with the technical terms). Only difference for me is that back then, it sounded super clean, whereas in Patati Patata – he has me wishing he showed more range as he did in the chorus for one of his recent drops, Zviriko even Uchandifunga (his voice sounded more smooth).
In Patati Patata, his voice sounds constricted. One could argue it is a stylistic choice, but subjectively speaking, as this is a song that will reach a wider audience in Africa, I think it would have been best for him to go all out and show the perfect range of his voice, to new listeners from across the continent & beyond.
The name drop is just super random to me😂. I’m still trying to discover the purpose of that, because from the verses I can understand that are in Shona, it has nothing to tie it to the lyrics.
• Is it a bid to get the attention of the person he mentioned?
• Is he paying homage?
• He probably doesn’t know the (true, unbiased) relationship between the person he mentioned and the masses, that is why he mentioned it, or maybe he does, and that is why he did so. (This can be interpreted whichever way considering your political biases)
• Maybe Java made him do it. We recently saw him decked out in his floral gear, visiting the oan mentioned.
It could be anything, but my point is, given the political climate in Zim, Roki had to know that the name drop would evoke a massive reaction from the audience. Therefore, it may be intentional and having Koffi do it may somewhat be intended to reduce the heat on Roki himself, even though it is his song.
Or maybe it was Koffi’s idea and Roki found it hard to say no to a legend. Who knows? As long as Roki understands the consequences of such, he’ll be good. Majority of the Zim crowd online will probably not let it go, but if live shows were up, I’m certain a lot of people would still attend. So he just has to know how to manoeuvre this political turf that he has stepped on. Such is the reality of being an artist in Zim; even a minor political hint in a song, will cause reactions. (Though I dount such a name can be considered to be minor, more of the epitome of it all, summed up in just a name).
The rest of Koffi’s verse, I mean he’s a legend. It wasn’t anything different from what Koffi does – he shows up for the video, says a bunch of things, wears his Koffi clothes and heads out. I think it’s great that he agreed to come through for a collaboration. I hope that his name will make the song reach a wider audience.
I enjoyed his part the most. He killed it in every way possible. His vocals were great; one would also assume that he speaks Shona fluently. I loved the energy he brought. He owned the song for me.
Considering how Tanzanians pull up in numbers on YouTube for their artists, I truly hope that they do so and help the song to gain more traction. Maybe it’ll have a million views in 24 hours this time.
THE VIDEO ITSELF
I like it – the different colours for the dancers and the aesthetics developed thereof. They had various sets and it is flamboyant as expected in Rhumba videos. The extravagance ties well with Koffi’s pace because I believe that he is one of the artists who set the bar for videos in that genre. So visually, I think they did great; sonically – not so much for me. It is the names that will carry this song, not the song carrying itself (I don’t know if that makes sense).
OVERALLY, apart from Rayvanny’s part as I already mentioned, the song is a bit underwhelming for me considering the big names associated with it. You know how Loi is a classic, or any of Awilo Longomba’s songs, or Yondo Sister, Kanda Bongo Man – these are legends of course, but each song was unique & had it’s own distinct feel to it, sonically. Patati Patata is somewhat generic to me, typical rhumba song. It doesn’t stand out, apart from the names on it.
Roki – Patati Patata feat Koffi Olomide & Rayvanny (Official Video)