Global News Inc had exclusive access to the filming of the brand new Aron B video co-starring Chinese star Ayi Jihu. Watching the action behind the scenes of this ambitious music video it became clear that the dynamics of the world music scene are drastically changing and at the forefront of the revolution are artists like Aron B and Ayi Jihu.
Initially, what one may see is a straightforward music video featuring collaboration between two young stars; nothing more, nothing less. However, the reality is that the power of this pair; one from India, the other from China, is atomic. Both have opted not go the traditional route or play traditional games, rather, remain independent. Both have forged a massive following – leading a new, much overdue, wave in this industry. This strength of independence and diversity is genius. Independently they have great strength, but in combination, they will command the attention and interest of billions of people … before even arriving West.
At a greater depth one then realises, the entire project has virtually negated the middleman. All direction, film/crew production, and marketing are all in house. Aron B carefully controls and directs the operation and has chosen another capable maverick artist to play at his side bringing all that she [Ayi Jihu] has to offer. It is a merging of ambitious, open hearts and minds; two individuals who can empathize with each other about the dedication and passion necessary for “going it alone.” This melding of all it takes to succeed professionally is apparent in the chemistry that is exuded between them on set. No “Divas” or “Egos” are present; rather, two trailblazers sweating side by side; cutting a path through the cartel that is referred to as today’s music industry.
Aron B, working with Shlepp Entertainment Ltd, put a young dynamic team together including new vibrant players like: Its Branded and Insignia Media Productions. Aron B is also well supported by his own people, most notably his family, assisting him in his own vision. For those who are not familiar, when Indian people get together an infinite amount of man and girl power is on the periphery.
Aron B’s vision and direction are by no means small either. Shooting with the highest quality equipment, as well as using the top professionals available, he has approached this more like a film than a music video. While most artists are content to stand in front of a green screen and move about a bit, this shoot takes on the look of a potential blockbuster. Whatever the outcome one can do little but admire his swagga and investment in himself and the project.
And Jihu partnering in this video adds to Aron B’s vision. A “true born” Chinese artist, she is unique as compared to most Canto artists who are introduced in multitude and never go beyond their own territory. Urban, sexy, beautiful, and extremely talented, Jihu, consumes the camera too – and there is no effort. It’s a natural vibe that draws even Western eyes an ears, and in doing so, provides no other reaction than the pulsing beat and complete pleasure.
And what about the track itself? Those in this profession can appreciate the fact that while on a video shoot they have no choice but to hear it over and over again. Usually after a few hours, one is looking for the nearest bullet or axe to put into the sound system. However, in this case, it gets. Aron B is an undeniable R&B singer; no playing around here. He has stayed away from dance infected R&B and planted himself in the roots of his craft with a track that is sure be a hit with the purists and perhaps the public too. While not able to speak about the Indian market, this song would easily knock many of the so-called R&B tracks currently infesting the charts right off their mark. It is infectious, catchy, radio friendly; it is performed with heart and style, and it just kicks in a club; making one want to bump his or her head “old school style” after listening a few times – unable to stop singing along. This track is also noticeably aimed at the West more than any other Aron B track that has come before. There is nothing obvious to tell you this is an Indian Singer in its music, vocals or approach.
As good as this is, it takes a lot more than having a great track to have a hit or success; even radio play for that matter these days. As much as the West likes to communicate that it is a level playing ground for everyone around the world, it is not. Let’s face it, how many Indian or Chinese artists do you hear on your radio or see perform via the airwaves? Speaking from inside the industry, it is evident how difficult it is to get things beyond the “gatekeepers.” Everyone is willing to take an artist’s money and do very little for it and what is replied by them when nothing happens is some excuse about the audience not taking to its look or vibe.
Basically, if an artist, even at the highest caliber is not white or black; which are what music consumers are accustomed to, no one really cares or really takes notice. If this level of artist brings the flavour an audience will get with, the “gatekeepers” are still present to work harder to stop diversity from breaking through rather than see it for what it is – quality at its best with the potential to reach the world rather than one or two continents. Mostly it is about control and the East and Far East scare the western music machine because they do not have control over it.
Aron B and Ayi Jihu realise completely what they are up against, however, playing it safe is not how an authentic artist creates something larger than life. This collaboration is without question a compelling case for everyone in the world to take notice. The numbers (following in their perspective countries) are already there. With the fan base growing steadily in India and China, the West has no alternative but to pay attention. Additionally, the differences and distances between the East and the West are tightening daily.