Daler Mehndi, the pint-sized Sikh songster who rode the charts in the 90s with such peppy bhangra pop numbers as Bolo ta ra ra or Dardi rab rab, is slowing down and changing gears. No, he hasnt stopped singing. Its just that Mehndis rocking to a different beat now a spiritual one.
Mehndis latest album, Mere Raam the Moksh Dwar, which was launched this week, has 24 sets of devotional verses hailing the virtues of leading a spiritual existence. It is my tribute to the Almighty whom I always remember before the beginning and end of every recording, says the singer who once set discos around the country on fire with his hugely popular Punjabi tunes. But fear not, fans of bhangra pop. Mehndi has promised that come September, he will be back to Ta ra ra mode and will launch an out and out pop album. Now thats whats called a man for all seasons.
Devdan Chaudhuri is a man on a mission. The owner of the art gallery Bodhi Tree Monastery of Art in Calcutta is determined to scout for talent in the remotest corners of Bengal. Hence, he is organising a talent hunt Journey of Art to pick 10 artists from Bengal who will participate in a sponsored art camp in Jodhpur, Rajasthan. The camp will bring together leading art collectors of India. So winners will have an opportunity to sell their works to them. This is a unique opportunity for young and up and coming artists from Bengal, who require exposure and support, says Chaudhuri. An exhibition of the works of the 10 selected artists will also be held in August. A laudable initiative, no doubt.
Remember that delightful movie called Loins of Punjab Presents? Well, anybody who wanted a second look, or anyone who had missed the film altogether, was surprised to note that its DVD was nowhere to be found. Well, thats been set right recently as director Manish Acharya announced the launch of the films disc version. Thats all very well, Mr Acharya, but how about coming out with another satire on the follies of Indians non resident or otherwise?
It seems Bollywoods favourite bad boy has found a new muse. The grapevine has it that Salman Khan is so impressed with the beauty and grace of his Dabanng co-star Sonakshi Sinha that he wants to paint her. Khan, as is well known, has quite a way with the palette and easel one of his paintings sold for as much as Rs 2.5 crore at an auction. And now he would like to turn his formidable skills to capture the debutante Sonakshi on canvas. So is Khan really going ga ga over Shatrughan Sinhas lovely daughter and braving the wrath of a certain Ms Kaif in the bargain? Or is this all a publicity stunt to fuel interest in the heroine ahead of the movies release? Whatever. We would still like a peek at that painting.
Where would out-of-work stars be without social networking sites? Koena Mitra, the Bengali model-turned-actress who featured in duds like Musafir, Apna Sapna Money Money and Ek Khiladi Ek Haseena, would have been all but forgotten had it not been for Facebook where she keeps updating her status (single) and sharing her thoughts (deep).
Anybody who chances upon her fan page will find her trilling about how much she is enjoying her singlehood after being in love several times. In between sharing tips on pet care, sexy Koena, who is an animal lover to boot, also scribbles her profound Art of Living-led observations. A recent post reads like this: Worries are like Moon. One day will increase, one day will decrease, other day may not be seen. So Dont Worry for Anything. Now thats sound advice the wonky grammar notwithstanding.