For the last couple of weeks, there has been a discernible change in college lingo.
When a friend of mine came up to me and mourned he needed a girlfriend (Ennaku orru girlfriend venumada), I was surprised. Not because he wanted one. He had never stopped wanting one (or more than one, for that matter) since the age of ten. But because he was actually singing it!
Only a couple of days later, I was initiated into the world of boys. To be more precise, the music of the Tamil film Boys.
The next day, I steeled myself to sit through the 30-minute bus journey to college listening to Radio Mirchi's radio jockeys mouthing inanities. I was in for a pleasant surprise when the bus driver started playing Boys.
I realised what my friend meant by his remark the previous day. But Ennaku oru girlfriend venumada sounded much better when sung by Tippu, Kartik and Timmy. I could see the song's popularity because in spite of our driver playing the song loud enough to rock the bus, nobody complained.
The songs of Boys, like the film, are made for boys. And, yeah, girls too. It is also designed to make older people hate it at the first listen. Maybe that's the secret behind its success! Even the cover of the cassette/CD looks hip.
A R Rahman has composed the music. Like all his previous offerings, these songs are good enough to drive youngsters into a frenzy.
The next track is called Dating. The song is about a guy who loves a girl and how the girl wants to continue to be friends. (Is it ever the other way around?) The track has a heady mix of rap by Blaaze and Carnatic-style music in English by Vasundhara Das. The manner in which Vasundhara Das mouths "Poda (Get lost)" in this song has changed the way hundreds of college-going girls say Poda. This song makes Poda fashionable.
However, the third song, Ale ale sung by Chitra Sivaraman and Karthik is rather ordinary. Lucky Ali sings the next track, Secret of success. He enchants with his voice. However, parts of this song sound suspiciously like rapster Eminem's Without me.
Boom Boom is by far the most hummable song. Adnan Sami's voice has a quality that eclipses almost every other singer who has sung in this film.
Maaro Maaro is partly in Hindi and has the rebellious spirit that was the hallmark of Western music of the 1960s and the 1970s.
The lyrics by Vaali, Pa Vijay and Kabilan, are like a breath of fresh air, written very much for us boys. Blaaze's raps (he has also written the English lyrics) are a refreshing departure from the mediocre rappers that contemporary remixes employ.
So, if you are young or just young at heart, Boys should surely be right on top of your must-buy list.