When one thinks of popular desi music in the West, only a handful of names pop up and among them, UK band RDB (Rhythm Dhol Bass) leads the line. Their unique fusion of bhangra music mixed with electronic has made them one of the most sought after musicians around the world.
Currently, the band — comprising three Punjabi Sikh brothers Kuly, Manj and Surj Singh — has been working on their latest album titled Worldwide. The album will feature many artists and major collaborations from across the world including musicians from countries like the US, UK, India, Pakistan and UAE.
However what they are most excited about are their ventures in Bollywood. “Bollywood is one of the biggest markets for our type of music. The platform helps us get our music out to places we would not expect it to reach,” Surj told The Express Tribune. He admits that the band would eventually like to work on a score for a Bollywood film.
In the past, RDB has done some famous tracks for Bollywood films including Tanu Weds Manu, Namaste London and Yamla Pagla Deewana.
East meets West
The band seems to have struck a chord with music lovers across borders, in the East and West alike.
Having collaborated with some of the biggest international names in hip-hop, RDB have a diverse portfolio to boast. Five years ago they worked with Snoop Dogg on their track “Singh is Kinng”. The British-based brothers have also worked with American hip-hop outfit Public Enemy, David Guetta and rapper Christopher Bridges, who goes with the stage name Ludacris.
“We met Snoop Dogg in 2007,” says Surj. “We flew over to Los Angeles; sat down with him and told him about our track. He immediately agreed to collaborate. While he recorded from LA, we did our part and filmed a video in Chicago.” Having been completely star-struck after meeting the “What’s My Name” singer, Surj recalls, “When we met Snoop Dogg, I was expecting him to be accompanied by a barrage of security guards, but he was extremely down-to-earth. He was great to work with.”
About meeting American hip-hop band Public Enemy, he recalls, “We met Public Enemy when we both played a show at the Millennium Dome. We ended up on stage together, which was a great experience.”
Currently, RDB is revelling in the success of their latest single “Shera Di Kaum”, for which they have teamed up with Grammy-winning American rapper Ludacris. Regarding this collaboration, Surj told Hindustan Times, “Just like how enthusiastic Snoop Dogg was when we approached him for ‘Singh is Kinng’, Ludacris too, was very excited to collaborate with us.”
Some of RDB’s most popular songs
“Singh Is Kinng”
“Yamla Pagla Deewana”
“Shera Di Kaum”
Published in The Express Tribune, April 28th, 2012.
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