Image courtesy of Warner

Watch the video for Priya Ragu’s new single about the beauty in diversity

“Chicken Lemon Rice” fuses African rhythms with Indian talas and a Tamil twang.

by Frankie Dunn
05 February 2021, 10:00am

Image courtesy of Warner

Priya Ragu is about to make you move. One of i-D’s ones to watch for 2021, the Tamil-Swiss singer has been teasing something special all week. You see, it might surprise you -- given just how collectively obsessed we all are -- to discover that Priya has only released one song, the brilliant “Good Love 2.0”. But today, her long-awaited second single has arrived. The joyful and very delicious-sounding “Chicken Lemon Rice” was produced by Priya’s brother, Japhna Gold, and is all about finding the beauty in our differences. 

“Some cooks follow recipes very precisely,” Priya tells us. “And then there are others that like to cook by heart, put their own spin into it and come up with a new creation. That’s what we have done with this song by fusing African rhythms together with Indian talas, and then sprinkling that Tamil twang on it.” And through blending these influences musically, Priya proves just how special it can be when the cultures collide. “The song is about celebrating unity and diversity,” she continues. “It’s here to commemorate all the beautiful cultures of the world. The world is not black and white, it’s colourful. We can come together and still be ourselves whilst celebrating different heritages and learning from each other.”

In the song’s Dumas Haddad-directed music video, which we’re premiering below, we find Priya and her horde of “archangels” -- Ananya Jaidev, Anthony Pius, Ash Appadu, Faz, Mukeni Nel, Suren Seneviratne and Zorawar Waraich -- dancing around an abandoned building laden with colourful treasures. “Representation and certain elements from my culture were important to me and Dumas captured it in a really unique way,” Priya explains. “Creatively, I was involved down to the smallest detail — from props to scouting talents and styling.” And damn, that styling! “I truly love all the looks created by Neesha Tulsi Champaneria,” she adds. “The funny thing is, we only got to know each other a few days before the shoot, but it looks like we’ve been working together for the longest time.” 

Priya’s brother Japhna Gold also appears alongside her in the video, performing a verse to camera. “Broskie is not only a producer but also a rapper and songwriter,” Priya says. “This project brings the best of me and the best of him together -- he appears here and there and is basically that extra voice on my album. Stan Lee in Marvel movies, so to speak!” 

Experience “Chicken Lemon Rice” in all its glory below, and join us in holding tight for the album Priya just casually mentioned was on its way. 

Follow i-D on Instagram and TikTok for more music.

Priya Ragu