This morning, I woke up and was happy.
And then I heard ‘Ocean to Ocean’ by Pitbull featuring Rhea and now I don’t think I will ever be happy again.
Part of me blames myself: how did we not see this coming? Of course it was inevitable that, as the biggest song on the internet and one of the greatest songs of all time, that someone would cover ‘Africa’ by Toto. And of course, it was inevitable that that someone, who would risk the wrath and the opprobrium of the entire civilized world would be Pitbull.
Oh we can kid ourselves, we can look for someone to blame: the Hollywood execs who commissioned this for Aquaman; the studio engineers who physically pressed the buttons in order for this to be committed to a hard drive; the many record executives who waved this through; the label distributors who could have said ‘no’, but didn’t - they’ve all taken their thirty pieces of silver and will have to live with the shame and regret for the rest of their lives.
But really, like the betrayal of Jesus, this was inevitable, there was nothing anyone could do to stop it. Pitbull is human nature itself: if there’s a buck to be made, there’s nothing too sacred that we won’t destroy. And now ‘Africa’ is up there on its YouTube cross: being crucified.
Am I being unfair, am I being overly harsh? Judging a new cover purely because I’m an old stick-in-the-mud who resents new artists from making old songs relevant to a new audience?
No I am not. Because this is shit:
And this is brilliant and is already enjoyed by people of every generation everywhere all around the world:
Critics have had their say:
Other critics also had their say:
This one was bloody awful too while we’re at it:
JUST LISTEN TO TOTO, EVEN THOUGH, AS A SPECIES, WE DON’T DESERVE THEM.