Hip hop bhangra band RDB’s (Rhythm Dhol Bass) Kuly Ral passed away on Wednesday morning, leaving fans and other musicians shell-shocked, reports Times of India.
Kuly, stated to be in his late 30s, died of unspecified illness amid reports that he was suffering from cancer, reports mid-day.com. Just moments after the news broke, condolences poured in from the Bollywood fraternity. “Just heard about Kuly’s sudden demise. Still reeling from the shock of the news. RIP,” said Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar.
British Indian actor-singer Sophie Chaudhry tweeted, “Such tragic news to wake up to. Can’t believe Kuly from RDB is no more! So many great songs! Heartfelt condolences to the family. RIP.”
Comprising of brothers Kuly, Manj and Surj, RDB is best known for blending western genres with traditional Punjabi beats and vocals. They have been widely credited with modernising bhangra music. In the past, RDB has given hits like “Yamla Pagla Deewana”, “Singh is Kinng”, “Shera Di Kaum Punjabi”, “Sadi Gali” and more. They also contributed to Kumar’s Indo-Canadian production Speedy Singhs.
Kuly’s death comes in the wake of recent plans by RDB to open a studio in India. The band had earlier expressed their desire to be more involved in making music for Bollywood.
In an official statement, RDB and the family asked that their privacy be respected at this very difficult time and thanked fans and well-wishers for their continued support and condolences.
RDB’s Facebook page is open for those who wish to pay their respects to Kuly and his family.
(With additional information from digitalspy.co.uk)
Published in The Express Tribune, May 25th, 2012.
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