Friday, 26 September 2003

Another Mehndi Goes Balle Balle

Walking into big brother Daler Mehndi's shoes might be a daunting proposition but Bhangrapopper.

Harjeet is pretty optimistic. San Francisco-based Harjeet 31, has been a live wire on stage and been performing for the last decade in the US and Canada. After belting out pelvic-friendly numbers for ten years, Harjeet pens his thoughts together in an eight-track album, Nach Punjaban Nach (DM Entertainment) which has hit the stores recently. Harjeet admits that he had been toying with the idea of cutting an album for a while now but " you also have to wait for the right time. I have been doing shows for almost 11 years and most the them have been quite successful. But Dalerji was keen that my album should be released under his label, DM and he took an active interest in the making of the album."

Nach Punjaban Nach is a peppy mix of folk, traditional (tappa and boliyan), Bhangra, hip-hop and pop numbers, composed by Daler Mehndi, and written by S. Mukhtiar Shahab and the music has been arranged by Kuldip Sandhu. The music video shot on the title track is a typical racy dance number and surprisingly Harjeet seems "unaware" about "the models - I left the nitty gritties to Dalerji anyway he understands the pulse of the audience in India better than I do. My job ended with singing, I leave the marketing, recording details to him and his able associates. I just know they'll do a better job at it than me anyway."

Harjeet migrated to the US when he was all of 15 and worked his way through high school.

After working at McDonald's and Jack In The Box at the junior level, he ended up managing their San Francisco outlets for a few years before moving on to a medical science laboratory. His music journey started of when he was a toddler: "music was a family legacy. Everyone at home, were musically inclined. I used to play tabla with Dalerji. Initially music was a part-time occupation for me but it is my life now."

Harjeet takes music seriously now. He has let Daler create a new image makeover in keeping with his music. So you have Harjeet flaunting a designer jacket embelished with gold buttons, a Swiss green sapphire bracelet set in white gold and spiked hair to complete the rockstar look. But beyond all that Harjeet is keeping his fingers crossed: " It's going to be tough surviving the inevitable comparison with Dalerji, That's the worst part being compared to your siblings: both Dalerji and Mika, our youngest brother are very talented but we all have our distinct styles." Let hope the audience understand that.