2008’s Oddest Moment: T.I. & Rihanna Adopt Numa Numa

Words can’t express the shock I felt when I heard Numa Numa come on the radio, and Rihanna’s voice basically karaoking over the chorus.

Okay, fair enough, anything that is popular is fair game for adaptation- now more than ever. In these lean and meager times, the media only looks to success to breed success. The percentage of movies that are adapted has skyrocketed, and the properties that they’re adapting (Monopoly the Movie?!?) look blindly towards past successes to form the foundation for a new success.

Still, this one is hard for me to swallow, because in essence, this:

begat this:

(after the jump)

and for the first time I can remember, two of the most successful artists of our times borrowed an otherwise obscure Romanian pop song because a random dude who lip syncs brilliantly taped himself doing it at his computer.

What’s more, the video makes it all the more ridiculous, as T.I. is trying to look hard as hell, walking bloodied through the streets of LA (?) as the chorus kicks in– and who, of the 700 million people who saw the fat kid video, aren’t picturing his face alongside T.I. at this very moment?!?

To add to the surrealness, let’s examine the lyrics: the chorus that Rihanna sings in this new version says this:

You’re gonna be a shining star,
With fancy clothes and fancy ca-ars,
And then you’ll see, your gonna go far,
Cause everyone knows who you a-are.

The Numa Numa song, O-zone’s song “Dragostea Din Tei”, has some slightly different lyrics:

Hello [on a cellphone], greetings, it’s me, an outlaw,
I ask you, my love, to accept happiness.
Hello, hello, it’s me, Picasso,
I sent you a beep [cellphone signal], and I’m brave,
But you should know that I’m not asking for anything from you.
Sheer Euro brilliance. I was hoping T.I. and Rihanna at least read the original lyrics, and had some sort of Easter Egg in the music video (like Picasso shooting T.I. or something).

The stark contrast of the album covers bring it home.


As opposed to:


If this isn’t 2008’s Oddest Moment (beside’s McCain choosing Palin, which eclipses it, undoubtedly) please let me know what’s weirder.

Now back to watching the amazing T.I. video- it’s high production values make the entire phenomenon far more surreal and bizarre…

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