In 1992 whilst attending weddings you have to understand they could either go one way or the other, once you had got to the Gurdwara and spoke to your cousins, the hype would be, who is the band, now this was a delicate question, it could either be a live band, or, International Band of (add the town of the wedding). Now, if it was International Band of said town, then a collective sigh could be heard by all at the milni, but if it was a band of note then, damn the rush to the reception would be similar to that to put har on the bride and groom before leaving the Gurdwara.
Remember certain bands would only play songs that they had released, so when it was confirmed that it would be Apna Sangeet at said wedding, then boom, mans were buzzing, they had already had an arsenal of hits, and they were where everywhere, no flyer was complete without seeing the faces of Sardara Gill and KS Bhamra smiling at you.
So in 1992, it was quite a surprise when the news broke via Ajj Kal’s BBC Radio Derby show that Sardara Gill would be releasing a solo album, has the band split? why has this happened? so many questions, young Nandeep was almost in a flood of tears, but also at the same time I felt excited that another Bhangra album was being released, and the image of Sardara’s flowing locks had me wiping away my tears. Then it was confirmed that Amarjit Sidhu (Chirag Pehchan,and The Kamlee franchise fame, he deserves his own Friday Flashback) was going to be producing it, all thoughts of a split were gone and Nandeep was happy, after weeks and weeks of trips to Bombay Stores I managed to get a hold of it, I have the album, now let’s share it together.
Kamlee Yaar Di, this track says so much about the time that this was released, the production is very innovative and yet still has that live band feel, the build up to the track is almost 90 seconds, which kept me waiting to hear the vocals of Sardara Gill covering a Gurdass Maan classic, and let me tell you this, he did not disappoint, this song, had everything, great production and Sardara really made this track sound like his own and not just another cover of a classic. What a song!
Apna Sangeet Vaje Apna Sangeet, now this was totally for the live scene, weddings today still have this banger on repeat, and why would you not? It is Sardara and Amarjit at their best, how does it go again? Apna Sangeet Sangeet Vaje Apna Sanget Hoy.
Do not let the start of the track fool you Akhiyan Udeek Diyan is not no light hearted ballad, It is Sardara paying his respects once again to two legends Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and Gurdass maan, and like track 1, Sardara really made this own, yet whilst doing this he was selling us the vision that he and Amarjit were creating, great track, oh and Bobby from Death Jamm made a very welcome appearance for reasons only he knows lol.
Mankah, the album was selling us a great sound, and Mankeh carried that on, it was a slower paced tune, but it was still well worth a place on the album, the slowing down of the album was needed, as I was beginning to ware my Dunlops out, and once again a Death Jamm connection with Happy doing the backing vox.
Sajna Ve Sajna, Gurdass Maan, I bet he loved the royalty cheque from this album, in addition to the royalty cheque, I’m sure he was impressed by the range that Sardara was displaying, the song continues the laid back feel of the previous track and really had us all sticking this on repeat, well rewinding it after it had finished on the cassette. A slight reggae feel to this was very consistent with the time and feel of when this was released.
Considering Sardara lived in Handsworth, he waited a few years before returning to Soho Rd lol. This track was a huge risk, as you was playing with a track that had been massive, and in a time when some cover versions were really falling flat, this was risky. Amarjit Sidhu and Sardara did what they had done all the way through this album, they made this very much a part of the Jam To The Bhangra album, a different flavor, a different angle, and this finished off the album perfectly, oh and here is one for you all reading this….. what is the name of the female singer?
Hope you enjoyed the snippets of the album, for the full version check out the spotify link below: