Berdymukhamedov totally coopts a Turkmen singer -- and his song.
Remember when Bruce Pannier of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty blogged about how shamefully Turkmen President Berdymukhamedov plagiarized a tune and sung it as his own during his birthday celebrations on TV?
It turned out the song that Berdy said he had penned himself, "For You, My White Flower," was in fact visible on Youtube back in 2009, sung by a Turkmen crooner named Dovlet Amanlykov, and called "On My Wedding Day".
I remember listening to both of the videos and thinking, wow, not only is the song exactly alike, the voice sounds exactly alike! How does he do it?
Well, it turns out that the reason they sound so alike is that the Turkmen leader may have actually had the same guy on stage while he was singing. Can you imagine?! This is what is revealed from another video uploaded in December from another time the president played "his" song.
Here's a clip from the 2009 video of Dovlet singing:
And here's a screenshot from the 2011 video where he is shown signing again, on stage, with Berdymukhamedov, apparently for a New Year's concert (there's a tree on stage):
Someone named ramzayi1 posted this video of Berdymukhamedov's concert on Youtube (see above) in December 2011 that has much more close-up footage, filmed right near the stage.
In the June version of the song, uploaded by the same user, ramzayi1 and published by RFE/RL, you see a lot of lights and smoke and a large screen of Berdy playing, but you never see what else is on stage. In fact, right when Dovlet in fact seems to come on (if you listen closely), the camera pans over the adoring fans in the crowd practically swooning to Berdy's song. This is all for state TV.
In ramzayi1's later version above, which he calls Turkmen president singing ver 2.0, you see the drummer playing a long "Drums and Space" type of Grateful Dead lead-in, then you see a paunchy Berdy in his chartreuse golfing sweater appear and strum along, and then you see him stand up at the end of the drum solo, and walk out on stage with his guitar, but his mouth isn't moving. Yet singing is coming out!
The camera then pans to a plump-faced fellow in a red bow-tie -- that's Dovlet! It has to be -- not only does it look like him, it's clear that it's his voice (when you compare to the 2009 video).
Then what the Turkmen president does is lamely sing along in a duet. That seemed like dubbing when you couldn't see how it was put together; now you see what it actually is.
Much of rahayi1's footage even blocks out Dovlet -- there's a large New Year's tree and other decorations in the way.
Now why did the Turkmen president bring Dovlet on stage for the New Year's concert, after stealing his song? (And did he even have him on stage in June?!)
Probably because it got to be such a meme among Turkmen music-lovers, who manage to see Youtube at least in small numbers despite it being blocked entirely in their country, that he had to think up something to account for himself!
So Dovlet is doubly coopted -- his song is taken, and then he is brought on stage to sing an unacknowledged duet with the president -- that he may have also sang in June. The lamer, older voice of the president can be heard in the forced duet. So sad!