Nothing like my city

Times of India releases funky local raps that urge you to go out and explore your city

The capital city stands for more than its historical connect — it’s everybody’s Dilli. As for our Indian Silicon Valley, its sprawling architecture and artists’ hub will convince you why Bengaluru is more than its start-up culture. For that matter, the ‘City of Dreams’ is equal parts Bollywood allure and ordinary Mumbai life; onto Chennai which packs a modern punch with its beaches, bharatnatyam and superstar Rajnikanth; and Kolkata which houses old and new, baul to rock and roll. If you were to sum up the best things about your city in less than two minutes, you could rattle off quite a few of these. It is these nuances, quirks and hidden gems that truly make a city. Times of India’s (TOI) has launched an elaborate campaign to not only celebrate these traits but also create buzz to explore the unexplored with its metro supplements.

Titled ‘Flirt with your city’, each of the five films in the series represents a metro edition: Delhi, Bombay, Calcutta, Chennai and Bangalore Times. In less than two minutes, the ad films depict a quirky montage narrated through raps, or as TOI calls it ‘city anthems.’ Sanjeev Bhargava, director, brand TOI, says, “People who live in the city develop a relationship with only a part city — the rest is a stranger to you. Through our metro supplements we want to bring back that city spark to the reader. We’re saying, flirt with those parts of your city that you’re unfamiliar with.”

Back in 2012, TOI had launched a similar campaign called ‘Born Glamorous’ for Bombay Times’ 18th birthday that emphasised how the supplement adds a dose of glamour to the everyday life. This time, the creative teams went above and beyond to collaborate with local artists to bring that much-needed local flavour to the campaign. “Our brief was to capture everything that the city dweller is passionate about. Besides, the local artists have brought out their opinions and passion for their city in a rap, and that’s what the TOI supplements do on a daily basis.”

What better way to get the cities talking than to pitch one anthem against another?