Rajeev B is back with his upcoming single ‘Beat It Boliyan’, a tribute to musical legend Michael Jackson. Featuring Saini Surinder and written by Jassi Singh, the song will be released under the label E3UK.
‘Beat It Boliyan’ is already creating a buzz ahead of its launch on 25 June – the 3rd death anniversary of the King of Pop. Bhangra.org catches up with the man behind the music, Rajeev B, for the story behind ‘Beat It Boliyan’.
Tell us more about your upcoming single ‘Beat it Boliyan’?
‘Beat It Boliyan’ is a tribute to Michael Jackson and uses guitar riffs from his famous song ‘Beat It’. It came about as I was saddened by his death and wanted to create something in his memory. He has been a great inspiration both in my musical career and as a lad. He might not be anymore but his legend lives on. I wanted to pay him tribute through ‘Beat It Boliyan’ and prove that his musical influence carries on not just in his genre of music but in any genre. I wanted to give Indians and Asians something to remember Michael Jackson by as well as others who are his fans. Meeting Michael Jackson would’ve been a great dream of mine but since that’s not possible, I wanted to do something to remember his contribution to music. ‘Beat It’ is a personal favourite of mine and its guitar riff is the most notably recognised one. I wanted to build a track around it.
What’s the story behind the video?
The video has subtle references to Michael Jackson. It tries to capture his talent, charisma and personality. So we got Michael Jackson impersonators in the video.
How was it working with Saini Surinder?
Saini Surinder is a new artist who is already making a big name for himself through the way he sings and his talent. He has a powerful voice and I wanted to give him the opportunity to work with us. He came up with an interesting hook like. I produced the beat first and had to fit the vocals around it. I wanted to make sure the beat was perfect so when people heard it they would instantly recognise the ‘Beat It’ influence. I have worked with Saini on some other songs as well and it has been inspirational to see an Indian singer, born and raised in India, to have the same love for Michael Jackson and to see that even he has been saddened by his death.
What’s the story behind Kudos Music?
I have been a DJ for 14 years now. Initially, I was working on Calibar Roadshow with some other DJs like DJ H, DJ Jas Johal, and DJ Unkar also known as DJ Unkz (who sadly recently passed away) and we all wanted to do something of our own. So we started Kudos Music. I have been with Kudos Music from the beginning and we have been running the company together since.
Who are your musical inspirations?
As the youngest in the family, I was predisposed to older genres of music. Bally Sagoo, Apache Indian, Malkit Singh – all have been great influences. I was inspired by Bally Sagoo’s music with its east-west fusion. In the West, I’ve been inspired by Michael Jackson, Maxi Priest and newer artists like Lil Wayne. I take inspiration from all artists as they all have their unique talents.
Why a DJ?
Surprisingly, I come from a family of scientists. I have completed two degrees in Human Biology and Psychology myself. From a young age, I would be tapping away trying to create beats. I would try and create new beats on top of songs to make them more interesting and energetic. The first musical instrument that my parents bought for me was a dholki. As I grew up, I started to learn more about music. I saved up to buy a turntable, records and started remixing beats to make them more interesting. As I grew older, my musical interests progressed. What was initially a hobby slowly turned into a career. I started playing at school proms, Diwali, and other events. I joined Calibar Roadshow when I was 18 and then went onto create Kudos.
So what can we expect from you in the future?
My debut album ‘The Takeover’ will release later in 2012. It will feature 10-12 tracks with a variety of artists such as Jelly Manjitpuri, Nirmal Sidhu, Nav Sidhu, Surinder Saini, Late Kaka Bhaniawala and Saini Surinder. I haven’t picked a definitive playlist yet.
Then there’s my remixes. I am always putting remixed stuff out there as free downloads which have had a huge response. It’s very convenient to have a studio in house which means you can walk in with an idea and directly transform it.
‘Beat it Boliyan’ will be available via iTunes from 25 June 2012.