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Bobby Friction
The only stand-out guy in the non-descript hotel lobby we find ourselves in is wearing a camouflage jacket. Having seen a fallen orange tiger-tooth earring en route to the table where Bobby Friction (famed DJ/musician/radio host/the man in the camouflage jacket) is seated, we also meet rapper Hard Kaur (the female rhyme-slinger on Glassy) and figure out that the fallen jewellery belongs to her. All the elements indicate that this is going to be an interesting evening.

Back in Bobbyís room after a quick photoshoot, we begin our interview while Beckís mellow Sea Change plays in the background. By the end of the evening, weíre rocking out to the Middle Eastern grooves of Turkish popstar (and all-round hottie) Tarkan and checking out rapid fire all-girl rap battles online.
Itís a fun evening but we donít forget the real reason weíre there ~ to talk to Bobby about his brand new compilation album Friction 2 ~ the follow-up to the super successful Friction 1, released in 2004. It quickly becomes clear that Bobby is as much a music lover as the fans that buy the album. Here he is, telling The Record about Friction 2, the future of modern music, being a good DJ, and how the power of Friction ~ The Album travels far and wide.

The Record: What did you want to do differently this time around?
Bobby Friction: Other people will find a winning formula and repeat it. What I wanted to do differently was release an album and then release another album that was an evolution, a revolution, whatever you want to call it. So thatís what happened this time around. Itís not an exact copy of Friction 1. Since then thereís been millions of Friction 1ís out on other labels, other copies. But this is an evolution.
We were getting emails from people in Bangalore and Calcutta saying, ĎI love your musicí and Iím thinking, ĎGood because youíre not just listening to what the words are saying, youíre feeling what theyíre meaning.í That was the best feedback I got for Friction 1 which informed what I did for Friction 2 because it told me that people were ten times more open than other record companies and artists give them credit for.

TR: Do you think people in the West are now looking beyond Asian music to other styles?
BF: In all music we canít turn around and criticize people. We are consumers ourselves, we get sick and tired of certain music. It does happen in Bollywood, it happens in western music. If thatís whatís happening, which I donít think it is really, I just think they want something different and thatís what theyíre going to get with Friction 2.
But if youíre asking what the next step is, I would say, first of all, as evidenced on Friction 2, something more regional, where itís mixed up more. Youíve got southern Indian drums with Punjabi beats mixed up with house, where before you had just Punjabi bhangra with hip-hop. Now thereís three or four different elements coming in. Itís not two cultures clashing anymore, itís four cultures feeling their way around each other.
The future is an even bigger mix-up but an even more fluid sounding mix-up. When you hear that stuff you donít sit there going, ĎTheyíve done that on purpose. Weíve got to have more cultures, itís got to grow.í This is absolutely the new musical language.

ďFriction 2 is definitely a different album than Friction 1 but still exactly the same Ė itís showing you tomorrowís music now.Ē

Sexy Boy ~ Hard Kaur
ďIíve known Hard Kaur for 10 years, Iíve always supported her as an artist and seen her grow. About two or three years ago I just realised she had something that a lot of other rappers and musicians didnít. Theyíre great with their music but they donít have the personality and they donít have the real street hunger. Thatís what Hard Kaurís got. Sexy Boy is a really great track, to me itís one of her best and I think it just shows off her talents for what they are, which arenít just looking good, rapping good and being an icon. Itís also good lyrical skills.Ē

Rang De Basanti (House Mix) ~ DJ Anoop
ďRang De Basanti as a film I thought was great. What DJ Anoop has done to the track is, heís taken the ethos of the film about the new young India and applied that to the remix. Itís a remix dictated to by the themes of the movie. The spirit of the movie, to me, informed his remix and I love that. Itís young, fresh, vibrant and in your face.Ē

Keep It Undercover ~ Sunit and Rakstar
ďOne of the most different songs on the album. Itís done out of love for British rap ~ quoting and modelling yourself round Shakespearean themes of love and romance. It sounds like an amazing hit. The best music thatís timeless is always two things ~ itís unique and deals with the big themes, and on the other side still hummable and instant. Sunit and Rakstar have done that. Iím not sure if the scene is ready for them to be massive yet, but itís a good introduction to where music is going in a couple of years.Ē

You can read the rest of our exclusive with Bobby Friction in the May 2006 issue of The Record Music Magazine available at your local newsagent.


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