You cannot stay still when you hear Punjabi music! Bet you! You will want to break out in bhangra, and why not! It’s definitely good exercise. Want to see a video that I made when I was in the UK? This video was made at a pre-wedding party, but I just called it Punjabi Dance Party.
I love the songs on the video, here’s a playlist. The timings are listed so that you can go forward and see certain songs without seeing the entire video – but why you would want to do that – I don’t know – you shouldn’t! The whole video is good!
At 19 seconds into the video: Aaja Soniyeh from Foji ft Gurlej Akhtar – Mentah. I just called it Aaja Soniyeh as these words are in it, but not sure what the name of the song is (one of my favorites);
At 1:01 minutes into the video: Aaj Blue Hai Pani Pani from Yo Yo Honey Singh
At 1:55 minutes into the video: I love the song, but don’t know what it’s called or who is the singer, but the dance to it in this video that I made is rather wonderful. This is when the men get together and dance like crazy! The song refers to Jallandarh, a big city in the Punjab – where I have been just once when I was 14 years old.
At 3:30 minutes into the video: There is a ritual dance that is in honor of the groom who will be married the next day (yes this is the party that the boy’s side held). The girl’s side held their own party the same day at a different venue. We were invited to the boy’s side.
At 4:25 minutes into the video: There’s a song that I like to refer to as the “Snake Song”. It is the same music that there was a fabulous dance to in Bride and Prejudice, the “Cobra Dance” that had one of the sisters entertaining the guest Darcy as well as Mr. Khan who was visiting from Los Angeles. Aishwarya Rai was in this movie and played one of the sisters. This was a truly fabulous movie!
At 5:57 mintues into the video, it’s the women’s turn to dance! Again, I don’t know the name of the song, or the singer – but you should tune into to see how Punjabi women dance – they do a dance traditionally known as “giddah” – a traditional folk dance.
At 6:40 minutes into the video, there’s Moorni from Panjabi MC (one of my favorites);
At 6:59 minutes into the video, watch out for the men’s turn again as they dance to the Dhol, and do my favorite – bhangra!
At 8:43 minutes into the video, tune in for nightclub/disco like bhangra!
At 9:04 minutes into the video, tune in for Spanish Bhangra! That’s all I can call it as there is a song that I should know the name to, but don’t and it is Spanish I believe, also popular, and the men love dancing to it bhangra style!
At 9:45 minutes into the video, tune in for the Bhangra finale!
If you love the songs you hear in my video, and want to hear the full version, and see the corresponding video from the artist click on the song links below
Aaja Soniyeh from Foji ft Gurlej Akhtar – Mentah.
Aaj Blue Hai Pani Pani from Yo Yo Honey Singh
Moorni from Panjabi MC
Cobra Dance from Bride and Prejudice, and I know this is part of another Bollywood movie too
Don’t forget with a good Punjabi Dance Party, you need a nice cup of tea, and some Indian sweets, so here you go – just for you! I took the first two pictures below in the USA, but the rest are taken at the Punjabi Dance Party in the UK at Walsall Football Stadium.
My daughter Niki took a selfie of us when we were in the car on the way to Walsall from Northern England.
Here I am at the party before it got started.
I hope you liked my video, and the pictures. Don’t forget to watch some of the other videos of the songs that I really like – they are some of the best, but mostly don’t forget to watch my video. Remember, there’s nothing like good Punjabi music, and especially bhangra!
I have many memories of London, but it all began when I arrived here age 18 (many years ago now) not knowing where I would stay. I actually arrived at Victoria Station, with one big suitcase, and asked the taxi driver to take me somewhere that is affordable, and he drove me to a bed and breakfast on Fitzroy Street.
On my recent trip last July, I had to go seek it out. When I first arrived here at age 18, all alone – I was somehow mesmerized by this area.
On first glance when you look at the picture above, you may think this is not a really spectacular street, but look what is around the corner! Such beauty, such historical elegance and exquisite architecture! Such a magnificent sight of the most wonderful homes – oh, how I wish I could live in one of them right there
Do you see how many famous people have lived here in these homes (look at some of my pictures below and you will see that Prime Ministers have lived here, so have writers, artists and architects.
I’m certainly not famous, but I can say I lived in one of the homes – well, it’s actually a bed and breakfast – for about 3 weeks! This place gave me such fond memories of London, that a few years later, I stayed here again, but this time sadly, I remember it for other reasons. I was staying on the very top floor, about two or three flights of stairs up. I opened the window, and unfortunately, it dropped down onto my finger that had a ring on it, and squashed my finger somewhat – the window also squashed my ring! I had to scream until some passers by heard my screams and alerted the hotel staff who finally came to my rescue, as I could not get the window back up or off my finger. I was in such pain, and had to then go to the hospital, where they cut my ring off in order to save my finger. What a horror story! But, true! You have to be really careful of windows I’ve learnt – please take note of this also, as some of London’s hotels are quite old, and you don’t want the same thing happening to you.
Still, I have good memories of my first visit there at 41 Fitzroy St Hotel, and nothing can take that away. That is when I first fell in love with London. I was a stranger to this place and showed up without knowing where I would stay or what I would do. I remember thinking this area in particular reminded me of the Oliver Twist movie in the good part of the movie, (I say the good part of the movie, as I categorize it into two parts – the good part is when Oliver was happy and well looked after, and the bad part is when he was taught to pickpocket to line the pockets of Bill Sikes, and Fagin). In the good part of the movie, where he lived with the kind elderly gentleman in London, Oliver would look out of his bedroom window onto the streets below, and he saw Nancy in one of the songs (the movie is a musical, and the song I refer to is “Who Will Buy These Wonderful Roses” and Nancy is Bill Sikes’ girlfriend). I remember the London I saw in the movie, looks just like the London I know in the Fitzroy Square/Fitzroy Street area.
The hotel is not at all fancy, it is simple, but very central – in a great location! Who would not want to be in an Oliver Twist like setting?!! This is a bed and breakfast, and I’m sure they have fixed up the windows since that time. I remember they served a wonderful hot English breakfast, complete with bacon, eggs, sausage, toast and jam, as well as coffee and tea. Needless to say, I went in to the hotel on my visit to London last year, and took a few pictures. After all, this place is part of my history! This hotel used to be only something like £30 or £40 (pounds) per night for a single room, now I’m sure it’s more like £80 per night, and you may have to share a bathroom. I believe I shared a bathroom back when I first stayed there, probably even during my second visit.
It is quite notable to see that High Commissions, and Embassies also are in this very same area. If the signs weren’t on the buildings in such a visible way, you would never imagine that it could be a High Commission or an Embassy.
This is Telecom Tower, as you head towards Tottenham Court Road tube station, which is also only a few minutes walk away.
The picture below reminds me of the scene from the song where Oliver looks out from his balcony. It probably was not this very street, but to me – this is what I remember or imagine it to be. I must watch the movie again – what a fantastic movie it was, and so memorable – just like London is to me. “Please sir, can I have some more porridge?” Then we all know what happened to Oliver, and how he was thrown out of the orphanage just for asking for more food!
George Bernard Shaw and Virginia Woolf both lived here.
Robert Adam, the architect, lived here.
Of course, i had to take a picture of the Indian YMCA – also very close to Fitzroy Street, and I remember this being here years ago too.
Just in case you are curious, “To Let” means to rent, and I’m sure you know that a flat is an apartment.
This is also nearby, but it is Bedford Square, just as pretty, but not quite as spectacular as Fitzroy Square. Bedford Square is shown in the next four pictures.
Back to Fitzroy Square again.
Well, hopefully, you got a feel for one of my favorite areas of London – the Fitzroy Street, Fitzroy Square area – near the Warren Street tube station. It is also walking distance to Tottenham Court Road tube station. I hope you enjoyed my little trip down memory lane, plus the pictures that show the surrounding area. Also, did you get to see the clip from the Oliver Twist movie – to compare it to my pictures, click here – so what you do think? Is it the same place? Here’s to good memories of where ever your travels take you to. Happy summer!