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‘Baby I Can Drive My Car’: A Beatles classic in Arabic celebrates Saudi women’s driving rights

‘...And maybe I’ll love you...maybe later I will think about these things, but at the moment I just want to drive this car.’


The women of Saudi Arabia have been celebrating the lifting of the ban on their driving in many ways. First there was this joyous rapper, and now there’s an Arabic version of The Beatles classic Drive My Car (video above).

Public Radio International (PRI) of the USA partnered with the renowned Berklee College of Music to celebrate the change in policy for Saudi women by having the lyrics rewritten in Arabic from a different point of view – that of a Saudi woman – and theb recording a performance.

A group of students from nations, including Palestine, Jordan and the US, replaced the original instruments with those from the Arab world, with Nano Raies from Syria playing the roles of singer, composer and songwriter. The Arabic translation is titled Rahsoul Say-arah, which means, “I will drive the car.”

“[And] the main idea is that this female was singing, just got the ability to drive, she’s really excited and at this moment of her life she really doesn’t care about anything else. She’s getting all these proposals from men. They are promising her all these things. But, she’s like, at the moment, I just want to drive. Maybe later I will love you, maybe later I will think about these things, but at the moment I just want to drive this car,” Naseem Alatrash, the cellist, co-composer and arranger of the song told PRI.

PS: Here’s the original song.

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