Worldwide pop star Jay Chou dropped his latest single, “Mojito,” on June 12. Launched alongside a vibrant music video during which he wanders by way of Cuban streets along with his band, it was a much-anticipated launch for ardent followers of Chou, whose final album Jay Chou’s Bedtime Tales got here out in 2016. He has solely launched 4 singles since, together with “Mojito.” 

“Mojito” was well-received by most people from the worldwide group; Cuban sunshine, tropical shirts, vintage vehicles and full of life beats make the tune not solely a catchy earworm but in addition an amazing visible delight.

Happiness exudes from the lyrics and melody of “Mojito.” Along with the piano, trumpet and trombone, there may be additionally a transparent percussion accompanying the primary jumpy beat. The lyrics take a mojito as a place to begin, zooming out to the elegant, ethereal hostess. Then the purpose of focus modifications from close-up to wide-angle, from a selected cup, to a selected girl, to the vibrance of all the metropolis. In the long run, the lyrics lead the main target once more to a zoomed-in, blurry contour of two lovers dancing collectively. The mojito montages the recollections of a lover, portraying a tranquil but effervescent, chaotic but succinct, affectionate but delicate Cuban metropolis.

One vital purpose for the joyful theme is that Chou in the present day, completely different from his youthful rebellious self who was offended about society, paparazzi and haters, appears to be genuinely joyful. The singer was well-known for his heartfelt and heartbreaking love songs like “Twister,” “Black Humor,” “Silence,” “Nocturne” and “Rainbow.” However in latest albums, particularly since he began a relationship with actress and mannequin Hannah Quinlivan, whom he married in 2015, his unhappy songs have truly felt extra compelled, like his latest single “Gained’t Cry.”

Subsequently, “Mojito,” with its cheerful, jubilant tune, Latin-inspired beats and affectionate circulate within the rap verse, is barely a pure outlet for Chou’s nice private life. As an alternative of the no person who struggled by way of turned-down alternatives, break-ups and clashes with paparazzi, Chou writes and produces songs just like the profitable famous person and playful performer that he’s. 

Placing the tune on repeat places an involuntary smile on my face, despite the fact that it feels flawed to be joyful in such a tumultuous time.

Amidst a world pandemic, political turmoil, worldwide stress and a rising consciousness of racial inequality, I really feel a necessity to remain offended, as if that’s essential to impact any actual change. Particularly when these round me are all the time talking up on social media and criticizing those that keep silent, it looks like I have to do extra, beginning with an lively dissatisfaction towards the established order. 

Perhaps it’s the so-called compassion fatigue, “the emotional residue or pressure of publicity to working with these affected by the implications of traumatic occasions.” Or possibly it’s simply the peer stress from the continually passionate fighters round me.

However one factor I discovered from “Mojito” is that you just don’t should be offended to do the best factor. Chou has addressed many societal points in his songs. “Finish of the World” admonishes in opposition to exploitation of the pure world; “Wounds of Battle” and “The Final Battle” painting the atrocities of warfare; “Dad, I’m Residence” tells the story of how home violence damages the kid concerned in addition to the romantic companions.

Nevertheless, “Mojito” is aggressively joyful in an aggressively tough time. As an alternative of declaring what’s flawed, it envisions a world of what’s proper, and people visions deliver unambiguous pleasure.

Cuba is a rustic identified for its turbulent historical past, from searching for independence from Spain to searching for independence from U.S. affect, from one dictator to a different dictator. 

Nevertheless, “Mojito” portrays a model of Cuba of music, basic vehicles, historic streets and dancing crowds the place folks have a good time life regardless of the turmoil, which is a psychological power all of us want in 2020.

That’s what I discovered from “Mojito”: It is okay to really feel pleasure, even when life suggests it’s crucial to remain offended to make a change. Psychological power and look after oneself are additionally important, as one must safe their very own oxygen masks earlier than serving to others. 

“Mojito,” certainly, is my oxygen masks.

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