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For a Little Virality: 10 Coronavirus Compositions

In the midst of a global lockdown to fight the spread of a disease, music is helping people look on the brighter side of a pandemic

Rolling Stone India
Rolling Stone India Mar 14, 2020
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Hello Virus My Old Friend

Singaporean artist Alvin Oon is no stranger to writing about everyday issues, considering he’s shed light on the haze problem in his home, but with coronavirus, he flips Simon & Garfunkel’s “The Sound of Silence” to call for a fight against COVID-19. It’s got enough warmth and also possibly unintentional puns like “It’s in our hands/It’s up to you and me,” but props to Oon for putting it out as early as late January.

Corona in the Style of Camila Cabello’s “Havana”


Tumakuru, Karnataka pop singer Rashmi Shaarvi is all about awareness when she takes Camila Cabello’s “Havana” and talks about how “masks have become the fashion statement.” Understandably, she nearly cracks up in the clip she’s posted to Instagram, but it’s allowed if you’re trying pack in all that info.

The Bhajan Mandal for Health

Indian way to fight corona.

Posted by Aayushi Chaurasia on Saturday, March 7, 2020

“Corona bhag ja, bharat me tharo kain kam re, corona bhag ja” (Run away Corona, you have no place in India, run away Corona) sing a bunch of women gathered in the living room, location unknown. The soul is in the right place, but if you’re anything like us, you caught someone coughing and are now hoping they did a little more than just making a plea through song.

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Gloria Gaynor Levels Up on TikTok

If you never knew Gloria Gaynor was on TikTok, then you do now. Perfect for the bite-sized video content produced on the platform, the R&B star sang one of her most famous numbers “I Will Survive” while washing her hands, doing her bit to raise awareness.

Go Corona for the Dancefloor

If Maharashtra union minister Ramdas Athavale’s public demonstration against coronavirus didn’t enter in your newsfeed, then this electronic remix by Pune-based producer-rapper Vaibhav Londhe would have, considering it’s been circulated widely on Facebook. Considering the live music industry is adversely affected by advisories against public gatherings, it might be a while until you hear this in the club any time soon, though.

My Corona!

Again, it’s not exactly a good sign that Seattle hip-hop artist and singer-producer Eric Baker is touching his eyes at the very start of his parody of The Knack’s stomping hit “My Sharona,” but you get past it thanks to lyrics like “When you gonna give to me, that sweet fatigue/Body aches and loss of appetite, CORONA!” Full marks, even for the bat costume.

Balcony Seats to Italy’s New Opera Shows

Nessun Dorma a Gavinana #iorestoacasa #forzaitalia #quarantena #coronavirus Maurizio Marchinihttps://www.facebook.com/mauriziomarchinitenore/

Posted by Chiara Bagnoli on Friday, March 13, 2020

Even as it undergoes the worst health crises in recent memory, Italy’s musicians are clearly not too rankled. Florence opera singer Maurizio Marchini took to his balcony to poignantly sing “Nessun Dorma,” but we say the real applause should be for his ability to simultaneously hold up his son and hit a piercing high note and hold that too.

From another balcony somewhere in Turin, people gathered to watch a yet-to-be identified male and female opera pair perform with a violinist. Going by the applause they received, this is the kind of stuff that gives a new meaning to performances in public spaces.

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Vietnam’s Catchiest Yet

As made famous by late night TV satirist John Oliver on his show, Vietnam’s “Washing Hand Song” or “Corona Song” is tropical-flavored EDM that’s unshakeable in its composition. Sure it’s raising awareness about how to prevent sickness in Vietnamese, but it could be about anything in the world and still be a hit.

Corona Goes Full Cringe Pop

It was probably born out of a cellular network’s pre-call coronavirus advisory notice, but the cough is what pretty much drives Bhojpuri singers Khushboo Uttam and Pravin Uttam’s song (into the ground, we dare say). As cringey as it is with all its forced coughs and latent racism, there’s actually a love story here. Is it a better love story than Twilight? You be the judge.

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