Angrej Ali ‘Diamond Ring’ behind the scenes interviews
2. How are you finding today? Being at the shoot of Angrej Ali’s new video ‘Diamond Ring’.
Yeah its great, the atmosphere is buzzing, everyone’s here so the amount of support we have is fantastic. Everyone’s anticipating this album so we’ll have to make it a good one.
3. Did you produce this song?
Yes I produced this song and composed the music, however it was ‘Jitt Salala’ that wrote the song, who is an incredible writer from Birmingham.
4. What should your fans expect from you in the near future?
I’m working with all the boys in ‘Entourage´, as both Dev Dhillion and Raju Dinehwala have their albums coming out soon; we have been working hard promoting these. But look out for more collaborations in the future.
5. What inspires you?
Well I love to travel and this is where I get hold of most of my inspiration for songs and albums, but everything to be honest, life in general gives you ideas.
6. What has been your favourite song?
I would have to say ‘Dil Nai Lagda’ as I really like the latin/ Spanish feel that the song has. Hopefully create something with a similar feel soon, so watch this space.
Sai Smith – Producer/ Director, ‘Ballistic productions’. (Danny Uppal- other half)
1. How long have ‘Ballistic productions’ been around?
We started producing music videos back in 2003. Our first video was for ‘J Skillz’ and our most recent is for Sukshinder Shinda ‘One in a million’ which was filmed in San Francisco.
2. How many videos have you produced?
We have been behind the production of around 200 videos and that’s always increasing. So our portfolio is massive, with clients ranging from Jazzy B to Jagz Klimax. This has meant we now have the best resources and contacts in the industry.
3. You must travel a lot then, where is your favourite place to produce videos?
I would definitely have to say India, as everybody is so energetic and involved. You have hundreds of people all rallying round, prepared to help in any way possible, which is very effective in terms of getting the video produced quickly with a great amount of support. Another favourite location of mine was the Lake District area, which was the location of ‘Mehsopuria’s video ‘Punoo Haniya’, this was a great experience with stunning views. Any location is fun, as long as there is a professional approach and lots of energy.
4. What do you enjoy most about making videos?
The creative process which we go through is very important and also working as a team is a highlight of these productions. As this is my full time job, I put absolutely everything into these videos so watching the final product is a great sense of achievement. Working alongside these talented artists is brilliant as the range of material we produce is so diverse and cultured.
5. What has your biggest achievement been?
We filmed the largest group video in history, which was the ‘The Military Wives Choir – Wherever You Are’. There were a total of 600 military wives, girlfriends, mothers, sisters and daughters. It was such an incredible performance. This actually broke a world record.
Iconic Makeup (Sonia & Kam & Jasroop)
1. How did you guys find out about this event?
We were contacted through friends, and thought it would be a fantastic opportunity to network and also illustrate our skills and talents.
2. Where are you guys based?
We are an East London based company; however we do not mind travelling around what so ever. As a matter of fact we enjoy travelling, as this means we can meet new people, increase our clientele, and showcase our expertises which are not limited to the surrounds of London. It’s always fun to go to different towns and try out new makeup techniques as all our clients are different and unique and we strongly value this.
3. Who have your previous clients included?
Well we have provided make up application for many years now, we specialise in party and runway makeup, however our portfolio also includes celebrity clientele such as ‘Shahrukh Khan’ and ‘Adnan Sami’ as well as cricket players and models.
4. How have you found today’s video shoot?
Today has been very overwhelming with all these high profile celebrities in our presence, but regardless of their status and wealth they have been so down to earth and warm in welcoming us. We have enjoyed every minute from selecting the various make up looks to applying the makeup for the male actors. We have carried out some similar work to this previously, however today was a great experience and we definitely want to try more projects like this in the near future. It’s fantastic being able to work so closely with the singers themselves yet also providing our knowledge in order to equal the best possible outcome.
Jagjeet Singh Dhaliwal (Male Lead- Birmingham)
1. Congratulations on this huge role that you have in Angrej Ali’s new video.
Thank-You very much! It’s been a great honour to work alongside such a talented and humble person like Mr Angrej. This has been a dream of mine for a very long time now, however I had never been given the opportunity before, especially due to the fact that I was residing in India and my family were against me doing so out of wedlock.
2. How did you land yourself this role?
My best friend is Jitt Salala, the song writer, and he works very closely with Aman Hayer and the other members of ‘Entourage’ so therefore I had previously mentioned to him how I would like it very much to be a part of a music video. This opportunity came about and Jitt suggested me to the boys and they accepted. I felt very proud to represent the band/ road show in such a huge portrayal. It’s definitely a substantial achievement for me.
3. Has today lived up to your expectations?
I was extremely nervous in taking up this role, but nonetheless very excited. It lived up to and beyond my expectations, as I didn’t know what to expect, everything happened so fast but I had a great time. It felt weird at times to have all eyes on me, but I felt confident and happy. It was a bit intimidating; especially when working with the main girl as sometimes we had to pretend to over exaggerate and laugh which was a bit awkward, but we used this as our common ground to feel better about ourselves and have a joke.
4. Have you done anything similar to this in past?
I have been approached to take part in music videos however I did not seize these opportunities. Nevertheless I have taken part in the 2010 Punjabi movie ‘Khushiyan’ by ‘Jasbir Jassi’. This was a totally different experience but gave me a good inital understanding to acting.
5. What do you do in your spare time?
When I was back in India, I was an International Kabaddi player however this has been put on hold for a slight time whilst I’ve been in the UK, due to work and family commitments. We took part and were successful in coming 2nd position in the Pearl World Kabaddi Cup. I would like to pursue this in the future as I believe I have the talenst and energy for this sport. I also own a wine business and run this full time, so I am very busy at the moment. I have also just had a baby boy, who is my priority at this time, so very happy.
6. Would you want to carry out similar work like today in the future?
Yes I definitely would as I have really enjoyed today, I also write my own songs so I would also like to push these and see how I go from there really.
PJD CHAN (Producer/ DJ/ General Assistance)
1. What role do you play?
I work alongside ‘Entourage’ as their DJ and producer.
2. Do you make any songs yourself?
Yes I don’t sing however I have been behind the production of music since 2005, when I worked with Lehmber Hussainpuri on the album ‘Rumours’. This was so successful worldwide and it was received amazingly by all our fans.
3. What have you been involved in recently?
I DJ on the entire ‘Entourage’ album. This was such a fantastic opportunity, to work with all the boys and finally being able to showcase my talents on a larger scale.
4. Do you work alone?
We have another DJ and a trainee DJ at the moment; they are working alongside me and ‘Entourage’. DJ Pavz and DJ Hariom. They are very aspiring and upcoming in the Asian music industry, so keep an eye out for them!
5. What qualifications are required in order to do your job?
I don’t have any qualifications in particular; I would say my experience has been my qualifications. I started off working alongside other DJ’s in bars around Leicester when I was in my late teens. This was a vital step in order to reach the point at which I am today.
Sunny Hayre (Singer – part of ‘Entourage’ band)
1. At the Brit Asia Awards, you guys took the award for ‘Best Live Band’. How did this feel?
This was the best feeling ever! I haven’t been doing this for long and still do a regular office job during the week which is a total world away. Singing and working with everyone else in the group is such an amazing way to release all the stress and emotions of work and life. Our hard work has definitely paid off and were so thankful for our fans and their constant support.
2. Did you always know that you wanted to sing?
It all started when I was younger and I used to do boliyan with family and friends, however I didn’t think that one day I would be sitting here doing it professionally.
3. Who are your inspirations?
I listen to everything and anything, but my actual favourites have to be Jazzy B, Kuldeep Manak and Angrej Ali. I like to listen to their songs, as they have so much depth and meaning involved in every chord.
4. Who would you most like to collaborate with in the band?
Everybody is so talented in their own ways, and it’s been such an incredible experience; being able to gain everybody’s expertise and flair for this work. I have had my moments working with all the boys so I really couldn’t pick as they’re all so unique in their own ways.
5. What projects have you worked on?
Well my first second was released this year called ‘Kaalja’. This was a surreal experience, but such a fun filled day, this was filmed at the Malmasion hotel in Birmingham. Watch out for the second single which is dropping real soon!
Angrej Ali (Singer of Diamond Ring– part of ‘Entourage’ band)
– 1st album: 1993: Koke De Lishkara
– 2nd album: 1997
– 3rd album: 2001
– 4th album: 2002
– 2005: Tharthi Hildi (working with Aman Hayer)
– 2006: Naal Nachdi Thu
– 2008: Ik Din
– 2008: Phattey Chak
– 2009: Nachdi De
– 2010: Ajj Nachna
– 2012: Ajja Ajja
1. Welcome and Thank-You for your time today. How have you found the video shoot?
Today has been so energetic and exciting to finally film the video for ‘Diamond Ring’ because I have been working on this for a long time. Everyone has worked extremely hard and made it such a wonderful day.
2. How did your musical career emerge?
I have been singing as long as I can possibly remember, from the age of around five or six I would say. My grandfather was a singer and possibly my strongest influence as I loved every aspect of what he did. Being in India up until 2003, I released four albums there and these were very successful. Then I was recognised by Aman Hayer and brought to the UK by Rana Johal. He is a very good friend of mine, and also a promoter in the UK. This was my big break as I could reach out to a huge bhangra audience in the UK and worldwide. I feel that I belong to music, and everything I achieve is in music.
3. What does your family think about this profession?
My parents, my wife and my kids are my backbone and have supported my throughout my entire life. They know exactly how much music means to me, ‘It’s my life, my wife’. To know that they are behind every decision I make is very comforting and gives me confidence in everything that I do. My younger brother ‘Tarsem Ali’ also now sings and this is a great feeling to know how this musical streak is running through my family.
4. How does it feel to be a part of ‘Entourage’?
It’s an un-explainable feeling to be working with so much talent; we all support each other and help one another which is a great perk of the job. We have great fans that are committed to our music, this is a strong factor. Being in this band allows us to be recognised individually and also as part of a massively talented group.
5. Who are you’re musical influences?
I have many favourites but growing up and throughout my career Charnjit Ahuja, Kuldeep Manak and Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan have been the biggest teachers to me about what music really is. I have so much respect for these men.
6. What is your favourite song in your new album ‘Diamond Ring’?
I would have to say that its ‘Jaan Meriye’. It’s such a meaningful song in my eyes.
7. What do you hope to achieve in the near future?
I plan on making lots more music, lots of collaborations with Entourage and other artists and definitely achieving some more awards. Most of al I just want to give my fans what they want and deserve, as music is so special and emotional.
All the team here at Punjab2000 wish you all the best with your up and coming album and hope that the future is bright for you in everything that you do.
By Gurpreet Kaur