British Columbia

'Bhangra King' brings hit songs to Vancouver streets

India Live is a festival celebrating the culture of India. Bhangra superstar, Malkit Singh, will perform hit Bollywood songs on the main stage. The festival showcases music, dance, art and sport from South Asia.

Malkit Singh will perform free on Saturday as part of the India Live festival on Granville Street

Malkit Singh, the King of Bhangra, is headlining Live India 2016, a festival celebrating South Asian culture in downtown Vancouver Saturday. (Malkit Singh)

The King of Bhangra is coming to the streets of Vancouver and he can't wait to get people dancing and chanting to his hit Bollywood beats.

Malkit Singh has been recognized by the Guiness Book of World Records as the best-selling Bhangra solo artist in the world.

He will headline the India Live 2016 festival taking place Saturday in the 700 and 800 blocks of Granville Street.

The festival, organized by the South Asian Family Association, celebrates the art and culture of India. Singh will perform on the main stage at 1:30 p.m.PT.

Neesha Nothi, the event's manager, said the festival is geared towards families. Not only will festival goers be treated to award-winning bhangra beats, they will also the chance to learn some of the moves and lyrics themselves. 

Singh gets people singing

For Singh, getting the audience involved is rarely a challenge. Even if they don't know what the words mean, Singh can get them singing.

"Even if [people] don't understand our language, they still love our music," Singh told Gloria Macarenko, host of CBC's On The Coast.

"I really enjoy when it is a different community. When they hear the song and when I perform on the stage, they start chanting."

Singh will perform his super hits for free. The song line up includes Chair Hun and Jind Mahi, both of which are from the soundtrack to the popular film, Bend it Like Beckham.

The Bhangra King explained that his music is accessible for everyone.

It's all about the beat

"The main thing is the beat," he said.

"So even if they don't understand...they can still enjoy the beat."

In addition to Singh on the main stage, the event will highlight Canadian dance and music talent, including vocalists Nishant Sharma and Kirti Arneja.

Festival goers can also expect yoga classes, cricket lessons, henna tattoos and opportunities to dress up in traditional South Asian clothing.

India Live begins at noon on Saturday, Aug. 27. 

With files from On The Coast.

To hear the complete interview with Malkit Singh and Neesha Nothi click on the audio labelled Banghra King comes to Vancouver.