Inspirational Music Video

The message to Sikh men of the latest Punjabi music video by artist, Taranampreet: "Don’t come around without unsho...

Sikh women prefer Sikh men with kesh and dastaar. That is the message of the latest Punjabi music video by artist, Taranampreet.

Donned in keskis and armed with guitars, Taranampreet and her group, the Spice Girls of Punjab, sing the song ‘Teri Meri Bas’ while perched high on an ornate platform. Below is a courtyard filled with Sikh women dressed in white. Their warning to Sikh men: "Don’t come around without unshorn hair and turban."

“These days Sikhs are forgetting what our Gurus did for us,” Taranampreet said in Punjabi, by phone from Jalandhar.

Born in Butala, Taranampreet was a college graduate with two older sisters and three younger brothers when she got her lucky break about seven years ago. She auditioned for music mogul, Inderjit Singh Bains. Both had the same ideas of creating positive music for Sikhi.

With Inderjit Singh as the songwriter and Zakir Husain as the music arranger, Taranampreet released three albums: Heer Saleti, Sahiban Jati and Nagni. Her music videos are produced in Punjab, but have also aired on Indian and Punjabi channels in Canada and the United States.

Inderjit Singh has launched many bhangra stars such as Jazzy B of Surrey, Madan Maddi of India, Bhinda Jatt of California and Sukhshinder Shinda of England.

I introduced fresh new artists, made them stars and let them go,” he said by phone from Surrey, Canada.

But after 20 years in the business, he said he had had enough of artists that only cared about making money. And he had enough of the bhangra industry, which has gone by way of the rap industry, he said."They send negative messages and promote drinking, drugs and fighting."

“(Our) Gurus have done a lot for us,” he said. “It’s our duty to do something for the community.” Sikhs, especially the youth, look at these stars and begin to think that if they don’t wear a dastaar and they don’t keep their kesh, that is okay, he said. He found his calling to make inspiring videos in Taranampreet.

 


Six of Taranampreet’s music videos are on YouTube. Two of them have inspirational messages and others tackle social ills.‘Naa Dole Khalsa’ impresses upon Sikhs to honor the sacrifices of the Gurus and martyrs by staying true to Sikhi. ‘Dheeaan’ asks Punjabis to stop killing unborn baby girls. And ‘Jalandar Lahor’ is a love story that shows the destructiveness of honor killings.

‘Teri Meri Bas’ has received the most views and the most comments. In one of the many approving posts, ‘sangajaspreet’ commented in Punjabi, “…looks like boys will have to live alone if they don’t have beard and kesh.” But in some other posts viewers had concerns, suggestions and criticism.

‘Pinkpeppypepper’ asked the artist to “please also write Kaur or Singh with your name.” ‘Meer86singh’ said "the biggest mistake in the video was that ordinary Sikh girls might think this message is only for those who have taken Amrit or wear keski."  And ‘Junta450’ said, “Sikhi has been lost to Sikhs, in the struggle for numbers - of dollars and converts.”

Making music videos has become a struggle for Inderjit Singh. He is spending his own money and making little in return. The ‘Teri Meri Bas’video cost Rs. 4 lakhs.

Inspirational songs should be distributed free, he said. But he also needs money to continue his work. It is difficult to make money in this “dying” industry where music and videos are regularly pirated and distributed without royalty to its artists or producers.

This only added to his frustration with the industry. So, seven years ago he gave it up as a full-time occupation and bought a telephone company with a partner. Music became his hobby. His greatest hope now is that Sikhs take a greater interest in the message of the music instead of the flaws of the artist.

“An artist is an artist,” he said. “She is doing something effective.”

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