Manjeet Ral and Gippy Grewal Introduce Their Latest Dance Anthem
Former member of RDB (Rhythm Dhol Bass) Manjeet Ral releases his electrifying Punjabi anthem of the year ‘Party Like a Punjabi’. Following the split from RDB Manjeet went on to form MANJmusik and has a slew of exciting new projects in the pipeline. From a new clothing line, plans with Bollywood and exciting new tracks in production MANJmusik is set to take entertainment industry by storm. In collaboration with Punjabi actor and singer Gippy Grewal Manjeet presents his latest hit ‘Party Like a Punjabi’, an adrenaline pumped dance anthem that bridges the gap between cultures with its mix of Eastern and Western musical styles. Speaking to DesiXpress Manjeet discusses his new single, life after RDB and why he believes it is important to reach out to a global audience.
Tell us about the background to this single such as musical style and concept.
I wanted to create a party anthem, the whole idea was to make a track that not only Punjabi people can dance to but everybody can dance to. I wanted it to have an international feel, the hook line is in English but is still orientated to those who are Punjabi so everybody can technically sing it. Even when we were shooting the video we had non-Indian people all singing along with the hook line.
Why is it important to you that this song reaches out to people of different cultures?
Everybody is making Punjabi folk music which I am a big fan of, I listen to artists such as Jazzy B, Sukshinder Shinda and many other singers. They are making some amazing songs but what happens is it becomes targeted to just those audiences who love folk. What I wanted to do was merge the Punjabi with that international feel, it is really important to capture a bigger audience. I love the Punjabis and the Folk fans who listen to hardcore Desi songs, but I wanted to reach out to a bigger audience throughout the world.
How did Gippy Grewal get involved in collaborating on this track and how did you both meet?
Gippy is a close friend of mine and we have bumped into each other many times at different awards ceremonies, studio sessions and so on. When I made the track as a sort of draft I said to Gippy, ‘What do you think of this track called Party Like a Punjabi? If you’re feeling it I would love to have you on the track because you are doing so well in the Punjabi industry.’ As he is a Punjabi pushing real Punjabi movies to the next level I thought it would be a great opportunity to have him on the song. After agreeing to listen to it he loved the track as soon as he heard it. He said we should sing it together and make it the Punjabi anthem of the year.
The video features Canadian Youtube star Jusreign who performs a funny skit, how did he become involved in the music video?
I am a big fan of Jusreign, as a comedian I think he is one of the funniest guys on Youtube, also my son is also a massive fan of him. I just reached out to him as I live in Toronto and he is out in Toronto as well, so I asked him would you mind doing something in the video? He said he would be honoured to jump in a do a little skit so he came down for the video shoot on the day and honestly, nothing was really rehearsed! We made it up on the spot and it came out great.
What was it like shooting the video?
This was the first video we shot downtown where we had permits and streets blocked off by police so it was an interesting video shoot! We had a lot of dancers and I wanted to make sure the video was not hardcore Desi, the only Desi elements in the video are the Dhol players and Bhangra dancers. If you see the dancers they are a very good mix because I wanted to keep that international theme.
Can you tell us any details about the new song ‘Desi hip-hop’ that you are releasing in January?
‘Desi hip-hop’ is completely different to ‘Party Like a Punjabi’ as it is very hip hop, I wanted to create something that was different from the last release I had. ‘Desi hip- hop’ is a collaboration of the best of the best Desi hip-hop artists from all around the world such as Humble the poet from Canada, Raxtar from the UK and Roach Killa who is Canadian and British. We also have Badshah from India and Sarb Smooth, so I have tried to capture everyone into one song. The song is about the subject of ego where people have big egos but I have a bigger heart than your ego, each rapper is doing their flavour throughout the whole song and it gives a good Desi hip- hop feel. With hip-hop, rapping in Hindi or Punjabi is a growing trend and going on throughout the whole world and getting bigger and bigger. It’s just my little contribution to push Desi hip-hop onto the next level and try to make this a genre on its own. Just like we have Reggaeton, when that first came out it had the Spanish language but people still understood it. We can make Desi hip-hop a genre in itself where even non-Desi people can listen to it.
Are the rumours true that you will contribute to the soundtrack for the Fast and Furious 7 movie?
No, we were going to do something on that but we didn’t bother following through because of legal and contractual issues. So unfortunately that didn’t happen. At the time there was a lot of hype and I was hoping it would happen. But where you lose one you gain another as I ended up becoming the ambassador for 50 Cent’s ‘SMS Audio’ headphone line, which was a big thing for me as well.
Do you feel you have left the troubles of RDB behind with this new single? Is this a step in a new direction?
Yes, at the end of the day the Manj Musik brand is growing, it does take time and when anybody starts a new brand it is very hard at first. I was just blessed to have had the team that was originally behind RDB still behind me today. The whole industry and other artists are still supporting me so I have been blessed to push on this brand to make it bigger. My main focus now is to release the best music I possibly can for the fans, I don’t want to let them down and I am going to do what I can with all my power to make cracking tracks and anthems.
Finally, what does the future hold for MANJmusik?
There is a lot more coming, I am still working with the Bollywood industry and big production houses so there are still some Bollywood songs coming through. I am also releasing independent music such as a song coming out after ‘Desi hip-hop’. We also have Nindy Kaur coming out with a new single and I have a clothing line called SOS (Swagged Out Sardars) clothing which will be launching next year and we will be starting it off with ‘Party Like a Punjabi’ T-shirts. It is just non-stop, I want to continue to deliver and hopefully the fans and public will give me as much love as they did with RDB.