‘DJ Ritu, the godmother of Brit-Asian music..’ – The Rough Guides.
Favourite activity: Playing and being inspired by her Rottwelier, ‘Dizee Rascal’ and her cat ‘Buba’.
DJ Ritu has been dubbed the ‘John Peel’ of British-Asian music. With a history spanning nearly three decades, and across the world, there is a lot to sing and dance about! She co-founded the Outcaste record label, signing Nitin Sawhney in his embryonic artist years. She has devised and broadcast her own regular radio shows on BBC 3 Counties Radio, BBC World Service, Kiss 100, The Asian Network, and a frequent contributor to Radio 1, 2, and 3.
A true pioneer, DJ Ritu put the first Bollywood show on air for BBC 3 Counties Radio in the early 90’s, which was soon syndicated in Germany, Turkey, and Sweden. She also compiled albums for The Rough Guide, Rough Guide to Bollywood, Rough Guide to Bhangra, using her knowledge and extensive experience of Asian Underground, Arabic, Turkish, Greek, Rai, and western dance music stretching back to the 60’s. No wonder DJ Ritu is a renowned writer, producer, DJ, and expert on the ‘world music’ circuit and beyond. Her travels have taken her from WOMAD to a standing ovation in the The Royal Festival Hall, and from Cairo to Cape Town playing to exclusive private diplomat parties to festivals and crowds of over 100,000.
Currently, as the successor to the late world music ‘don’, Charlie Gillett, she has widened her repertoire through her weekly BBC show, A World In London, incorporating sounds from Africa, Asia, The Americas, and the Middle East. Warm, down-to-earth, and genuine, her presentation style is similar to that of one of her heroes, Andy Kershaw, who returns to the BBC to host the Human Planet/Musical Planet series.
Even with such extensive experience, DJ Ritu managed an embarrassing on air moment when she tried to wish the artists B21 ‘continued success’ at the end of an interview but actually wished them ‘continued sex’.
DJ SAN-J SANJ
West London’s San-j Sanj was the chief protagonist behind the pioneering remix outfit X-Zecutive Sounds, who created the groundbreaking Xtra Hot series of compilations for Multitone Records in the 90s! He has been a much loved broadcaster at The Asian Network and Club Asia. His fantastic DJ skills have kept San-j Sanj in demand in the UK and he continues to command immense respect amongst younger Asian DJ’s. Key catalyst of the 80s bhangra daytime raves, and recipient of many awards, Sanj currently specialises in ‘bombass’ classic and new Bolly sounds, mixed up with funky house and tuff beats!!
Listen out at his own weekly club nights like Cafe Chai and other special appearances. Sanj also released his brilliant single featured in the latest Gurinder Chadha film, ‘It’s A Wonderful AfterLife’. Sampling the classic tune ‘Dum Maro Dum’, Sanj’s track ‘So Real So Right’ heralds his much welcomed return to the production studio & a forthcoming album, available from iTunes!