In a recent development in the music industry the famous youth icon of Assamese music Zubeen da unveiled the string of copies that his songs have spawned over the last few years.

Zubeen Garg ofcourse needs no introduction in the Assamese music industry. Since the release of his debut album Anamika in 1992, Zubeen da- to his fans- has serenaded audience with his singing as well as his lyrical and music composition skills. His popularity is surpasses that of most of his contemporaries and anyone who listens to his songs will agree this is deservedly so.

Infact, Zubeen da’s popularity is not only confined to the Assamese music industry. He has sung and composed songs for several other regional music industries among which the Bengali music industry is prominent. His songs for mainstream Bollywood like Ya Ali from the 2006 Anurag Basu movie Gangster and Dil Tu Hi Bata from Krissh 3 (2013) are also huge hits. Apart from this, he has also sung in many other languages including Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam,Marathi, Odia, Bodo, Karbi, Nepali, Bishnupriya Manipuri, Goalparia and English.

It comes as a rather rude surprise when the work of an artiste of Zubeen da’s stature is openly copied without his permission. The matter came to mainstream light when he posted an update on his Facebook page citing a case of plagiarism by the Odia music industry in a song sung by a senior Bollywood singer Udit Narayan.

Post dated 2nd March 2017 (credit: Zubeen Garg official page)

This however, was not the only instance of gross misappropriation of the singer’s work. He has posted several other such instances of blatant copying of not only the melody but also lyrics of the song.

Another copied Oriya song (credit: Zubeen Garg official page)
A copy by the Bengali music industry (credit: Zubeen Garg official page)
A copy closer home- by the Manipuri industry (credit: Zubeen Garg official page)

In a bizarrely funny move (pun intended) the following music video not only copies the song and melody of the singer’s song but also the choreography of the original Assamese music video.

Yet another copy by the Odia music industry (credit: Zubeen Garg official page)

In case you’re in any doubt of the degree of undeniable resemblance of the songs to their original versions, here is a video by the BapaoGiri channel in their Plagiarism series on 7th March 2017 which features a side-by-side comparisons of the above-mentioned songs.

They say “Imitation is the highest form of Flattery”. However, copying an artiste’s work without granting him due credit for the same is an extremely disrespectful way of disgracing his art. As Zubeen da has confirmed on his Facebook page- he has no beef with the singers of the song but rather, the music directors and the producers who have created and helped spread plagiarism. One can only hope that with time, such acts no longer take place.

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