17/06/2008

The Rough Guide to Bhangra (2001)

«The Rough Guide to Bhangra marks a milestone in the history of Bhangra by bringing together, for the first time ever, most of the key artists and labels onto one CD. Every track is a classic, no padding, no 'fillers', just hit after hit. You don't need to understand the words, just get the vibe.

From humble beginnings in the North Indian Punjab region, where Bhangra began as traditional folk music, the last half decade has seen it transported to Western Europe, a million miles away, to be missed with every music style non-Asian could throw at us: house, hip-hop, swing, reggae, drum'n'bass and UK garage. British Bhangra has merged with flying colours in its own styles. Bhangra music is now Britain's major Asian export, accounting for huge sales across the world notably in other parts of the scattered Asian diaspora.

What hasn't changed from the Punjabi villages, though, is that the music is still simply brilliant. Vibrant, colourful, entertaining and exhilarating, this music is built for dance with the dhol, the tumbi, the alagozi, the electric guitars and synths, the hook lines, catching lyrics, 'chak de pahtteys' and 'hoi hois' amid the dance moves – playful skipping, jubilant arm waving and expressive facial expressions.» (DJ Ritu, Red Hot Curry)

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