Every four years, sports enthusiasts prepare for the FIFA World Cup, which unites international soccer players and fans around the globe. During this time, artists of all calibers do the same with music – highlighting diversity and unity. One of this year’s official World Cup tracks is Danna Paola’s reimagined cover of Queen’s “A Kind of Magic,” alongside the soulful Saudi Arabian singer-songwriter Tamtam and the Egyptian neo-soul and rap artist Felukah.
On covering a Queen song, the Mexican pop star tells Remezcla that the British rock band is one of the artists that has inspired her the most in her career — “Bohemian Rhapsody” is her favorite track — due to the band not setting limits when creating art. We see this “limitless” component in 1986’s “A Kind of Magic,” which Danna refers to as a song that transcends generations. “I love bringing back an icon to newer generations with ‘A Kind of Magic.’ It has a little bit of Spanish – putting in a little bit of Latin too – it’s a song that the newer generations will [now] also know,” she shares. Danna also notes how she believes that music is magic, connection, and about unity. “It’s really the opportunity to be able to unite everyone,” she adds. “Language has no barriers; music has no barriers.”
The classic song was reworked by producer Stelios Phili, who was in charge of putting together this global project for Coca-Cola’s official FIFA World Cup campaign. Undoubtedly, the powerhouse campaign impacted the artists: Felukah called it a “pivotal turning point” in her career; Tamtam referred to it as “a dream.” As far as representation goes, while Danna added Spanish lyrics to represent Latine culture, Felukah also added Arabic to the global mix. “I knew I had to rap in my mother tongue. So it’s all Arabic,” Felukah tells Remezcla. “For the most part, it is Arabic, because this is my moment – it’s my people’s moment. We got to make it in Arabic.”
Furthermore, each artist detail how empowering and important it was to collaborate with other women on this track. “There are always opportunities for all women, and we must empower ourselves and support each other,” Danna says. “I think something I’ve learned in recent years that’s very important is to not only [focus on oneself], but to come together [with others] and support each other. Women can do anything and female empowerment also comes from talking, supporting, and collaborating with each other.”
Felukah agrees on the importance of collaborating with each other: “Just like the beauty of it being an all-women’s project, I think that’s really where the future is headed. Of course, it [goes] beyond any kind of genre, beyond gender – we are all one,” she says. Tamtam echoes a similar sentiment, noting, “It’s so incredible that three different women from different parts of the world collaborated together on this song that is just so powerful and it represents the divine feminine.”
Before wrapping up the conversation, Tamtam also shares that it’s an honor to represent women from Saudi Arabia: “Things are opening up, the country is encouraging people from Saudi to do more of the arts in terms of art, music, [and] acting. I’m really happy with these changes, and I’m honored that I get to be able to represent Saudi in this way.”
As far as each artist’s favorite past World Cup songs go, Danna and Felukah’s is Shakira’s “Waka Waka (This Time for Africa).” Tamtam’s favorite is K’NAAN’s “Wavin’ Flag,” which was also part of the 2010 edition.
Watch the music video for “A Kind of Magic” below.