Nicki Minaj, Maluma, and Lebanese singer Myriam Fares have officially dropped their 2022 FIFA World Cup song, titled “Tukoh Taka”. The song is groundbreaking and marks the first trilingual official World Cup tune, as Nicki, 39, raps in English and Spanish, Maluma, 28, sings in Spanish, and Myriam, 39, sings in Arabic. The music video, which also dropped on Friday, Nov. 18, shows all three artists singing their parts in dreamy desert scenes.
Myriam is the first musician to be seen and kicks off the song by singing the chorus and shaking her hips in a nighttime desert scene with six backup dancers dressed in white behind her. Maluma makes his appearance next and dances in front of a giant metal soccer ball in a similar desert scene. Nicki’s part comes in with the first verse, and she can be seen showing off her rapping skills on the inside of a moving bus. The mother of one sparkled in a bedazzled black bodysuit paired with an attention-demanding black jacket that featured black tassels.
“Tukoh Taka” serves as the official anthem for the FIFA Fan Festival in Doha, which gives fans views of the soccer matches via large screens as they enjoy food and live music. Maluma and Fares are slated to debut the song for the first time live at the festival in Doha, Qatar on Saturday, Nov. 18.
“I am so happy to be part of this FIFA World Cup anthem! I always dreamt of an opportunity like this,” Maluma gushed in a statement to the press, per Billboard. “Representing Latin music on this global track alongside amazing artists that sing in English and Arabic, takes our culture to another level.”
Myriam also expressed her excitement about the collaboration. “‘Tukoh Taka’, the song that I was honored to participate in its composition, arrangement, and choreography, made me more passionate about it, in addition to working alongside two of my favorite international artists, Nicki Minaj and Maluma,” she noted. “I truly wish that ‘Tukoh Taka’ will be transmitting the Eastern culture and Arabian music to the whole world.”
Every year, some of the world’s biggest artists are tasked with creating a song for the FIFA World Cup, the most prestigious soccer tournament in the world. Some notable past tunes include Ricky Martin’s “The Cup of Life” from 1998 and Shakira’s world-renown 2011 hit, “Waka Waka (This Time For Africa)”.
The historic “Tukoh Taka” collaboration is sadly not without some drama, as FIFA has endured strong backlash for holding the competition in Qatar, a country known to openly discriminate against women and the LGBTQ+ community. Former soccer pro, David Beckham, 47, was sharply criticized for being an ambassador for the Qatar World Cup and finally addressed the matter in a Nov. 17 interview. “Qatar dreamed of bringing the World Cup to a place that it had never been before, but that it wouldn’t be enough just to achieve things on the pitch. The pitch would be a platform for progress,” he told The Guardian.
“Dreams can come true,” he continued. “That is why you are here. You share Generation Amazing’s twin passions for the game of football and for making the world a more tolerant and inclusive place.”
Meanwhile, musician Rod Stewart, 77, claimed he turned down an impressive paycheck to perform at the 2022 World Cup due to Qatar’s systemic oppression. “I was actually offered a lot of money, over $1 million, to play there 15 months ago,” he told The Sunday Times. “I turned it down. It’s not right to go. And the Iranians should be out too for supplying arms.”
The 2022 FIFA World Cup debuts on Nov. 20 with Qatar playing against Ecuador.