Episodes of the RDBtv show, an online music TV programme made by producers RDB, are once again available to watch. Today about 20 episodes were uploaded to the Three Records channel on youtube. They were made in 2004 - 2005 and include an episode which showed the making of the video for Dil Mera.
75 episodes of the RDBtv show of around 30 minutes each were made between 2004 and 2007. They contained interviews with musicians, a top ten chart and news. Presented by RDB, the shows give an insight into the industry and took bhangra fans backstage at events such as the Asian Ball in Manchester and the Zee Mela. There were interviews with big name artists including Jassi Sidhu, Raghav and Juggy D.
The shows look unpolished and slightly dated in places, but the energy and enthusiasm still comes across. The power of hindsight makes the shows even more interesting to watch and it is a great record of bhangra in the mid naughties. In one episode Manj mentions that Tigerstyle are doing production work for Gunjan and Bikram Singh, American artists that "are going to be massive". Kuly featured heavily in RDBtv and the shows are a sad reminder that he is no longer with us.
In today's world where music stars are in constant contact with their fans through facebook and twitter, the concept of RDBtv seems quaint. But back in 2004 the show was revolutionary in a way that younger music fans might not understand. Youtube and social networking barely existed and most artists hardly bothered with personal websites. TV interviews with bhangra stars were rare and the interviews that appeared in magazines were often too basic. RDBtv was the closest some people had ever been to their musical heroes and they could watch the show at anytime as often as they wanted for free.
These shows still make great viewing and I spent most of my evening watching them getting nostalgic. When they were orginially removed from the internet, RDB were just beginning to break into India. Now that some episodes are online again they act as a history of bhangra at that time. I hope that the rest of the episodes will be uploaded soon.