A 2012 song and video by the Bosnian rapper Haris Rahmanović AKA Priki, 31, imagined what Yugoslavia may have looked like had it never disintegrated.

“Yustalgia” Video

Posted by music video film director/artist Filip Filković Philatz, credited “Director,” “Camera,” “Editing/Post/Sound/Design,” and “Story/Idea” on the video. In the video description, he writes, “What would she look like if the wars of the 1990s never happened? A speculative video “Yustalgia” fictitiously shows a possible alternative history.”

“Yustalgia” Lyrics

Original English
Gledam u nebo da vidim sta me ceka I look at the sky to see what’s ahead
al’ nema znakova samo tragovi Star Treka but there are no signs except traces of Star Trek
nema lijeka za ljude sto šire mržnju there is no cure for people who spread hate
jer takvi iza sebe ostave priču tužnu because they leave sad stories behind.
Izlazim napolje, želim istinu I go outside, I wish for certainty
prije nego sto vanzemaljci me prstom dodirnu before aliens touch me with their fingers
za koju godinu bit će sve drugačije when is anything going to be different
drug, uništit će nas ovaj prokleti Facebook, Youtube i Twitter, care comrade, goddamn social media will destroy us
Šaljem brdo ljubavi za sve Yugonostalgičare I send a mountain of love to all Yugonostalgics
za sve uplakane majke i za oceve sa žuljevima to all mothers in tears and fathers with blisters
za svu djecu koja su na krivim putevima to all kids who are on the wrong path
Zagreb, Sarajevo i Beograd Zagreb, Sarajevo, and Belgrade
za neki budući pametan korak for some future memorable step
koji neće biti gorak kao pelin which will not be as bitter as wormwood
nadam se da neću morati da se selim odavde jer I hope I will not have to move away from here
Želim da je sve OK sa nama I wish everything will be ok with us
želim da prodje prokleta tama I wish the damn darkness will pass
Brz tempo života kolje nas Fast is the pace of life around us
brza hrana kojoj ne odoljevaš fast is the food that you cannot resist
i proljevaš krv kao vodu za slobodu and you shed blood like water for freedom
i ne možes dobiti posao and you cannot get a job
jer nisi u rodu sa vlasnikom firme because you are not related to the company owner
Odjednom pogrešno je ime Suddenly the name is wrong
koje dala ti je mater iz ljubavne idile the one your mother gave you in an amorous idyll
u gradu prodaju se kile in town they sell hernias
gdje gorile rješavaju sve probleme uz pomoc sile where gorillas solve their problems with force
A ja se pitam gdje tu pripadam And I ask where I belong
jer naveće sanjam slobodu kao da je Amsterdam because I mostly dream about freedom like in Amsterdam
i nije da se žalim kad znam da može bolje and not that I regret knowing things can be better
nadam se da nas nekad čuje onaj gore I hope the one above hears us sometime
Dočekujem zore kad skupe se problemi I await dawn when problems amass
oni znaju bolje šta ima Remi they know better what Remi has (?)
znam da bit će bolje, je l’ tako Marko I know things will be better, and so does Marko (?)
vjerujem u ljubav sve dok sunce je žarko, i zato I believe in love as long as the sun is burning, and therefore

Media Coverage

“”Yustalgija” podigla prašinu: Srbe razljutilo fiktivno odvajanje Vojvodine,” Index.hr, 12/26/2012

Philatz: “The whole story should be seen as a fiction that has given us the ability to imagine an alternative reality. This is not about trying to change or influence the current reality. That is why we returned to the beginning, to the dissolution in the 1990s. But in our video, that time is the fictitious beginning of Yugoslavia’s growth, whose direction is different from today. That is why that window of opportunity gave us the freedom to break away from today’s reality.”

“”Yustalgija”: Kako bi izgledala Jugoslavija da nije bilo ratova,” Blic, 12/24/2012 (cached)

Priki:

  • “I don’t care about politics because it is too complicated for me and my brain. I am the voice of the young generation who is thinking about love and affiliation. “Yustalgia” could serve as a reminder of the golden age when everyone had the same thing, everyone went to the sea, had a job, and, most importantly, we all loved one another. Today is the opposite, unfortunately. I did not experience Yugoslavia in the way my parents did, but I definitely feel that country, I feel that love, genius, sport, culture…”
  • “I will never leave the Balkans because it is not the solution to leave my home. Young people should stay where they are and fight for a better tomorrow, because only that can be better for us. Going to another country is not a way to make us better, it only weakens us in every respect. We’re all hypnotized by America. I know they can take everything from us but our soul, the Balkans have a soul.”
“Pogledajte kontroverzni spot o Jugoslaviji,” tPortal.hr, 12/21/2012

Filkovic Philatz: “This idea has been in my mind for a while. I’m not a Yugonostalgic, I’m just interested in what it would be like to have gone in another direction. Creativity and historical intrigue come to light here. Through speculative alternative history, we tried to create a world that is not only possible but is possible in parallel. (…) As in the real world, the video gives viewers a chance to discern what is good or bad, right or wrong. There are different motifs around the video and the question is whether to believe everything in the media, because the reality of the video looks bad.”

Priki: “”Yustalgija” was originally a simple song about love and the joining of people who once loved one another. Philatz’s music video added another dimension to it. He created a fictitious story of what it would have been like if there had been no war, where Yugoslavia would go and where would we live today. I was honored to be working with Philip because he was the artist first and then everything else.”

 

Notes

In 2016, Rahmanović retired Priki and shifted from hip hop to house music.