It's Bhangra Party!

December 5, 2007 3:14:14 PM PST
There is a unique dance party like you've probably never seen. It's mixes catchy beats and lyrics from different songs. And a woman moved by the music is bringing it to New Yorkers.

Eyewitness News reporter Lauren Glassberg spoke to her.

When Rekha Malhotra hits the turn tables, she plays both the music of her heritage and the hip hop she loves. It's called Bhangra -- music that originates in the Punjab region along the border of India and Pakistan.

The indigenous sound gets laced with more modern day beats.

"With globalization everything is cross pollinated," said Malhotra. "People in UK, states and India are hearing it and vice versa."

And one of the places people are hearing this mix of cultures is at SOB's, where once a month for 10 years DJ Rekha has held the basement Bhangra party.

"Here, you have this fantastic mix. It's so fun and so catchy," said a woman. "It's western but it's so Indian."

The night usually kicks off with a dance lesson. The party continues late into the night with people lining up to get in. The crowd is mixed both in age and ethnicity. And the rhythm is the unifying factor.

Sometimes DJ Rekha invites other performers to the stage and now after a decade DJ Rekha is out with her first CD with songs that call on other genres including reggae, hip hop, and R and B.

Rekha hopes her CD keeps you dancing in the days between her basement Bhangra parties.

"It comes from the heart," said Rekha Malhotra. "I'll play the music as long as they keep coming, I'll keep doing it." The next basement Bhangra part is tomorrow, Thursday night.

She was just nominated for a Plug award for the DJ album of the year -- Plug honors the independent music community.


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