What a night! Thank you, viagra medical Bay Area, generic viagra for coming out and celebrating with us. In our last post, we shared some wonderful NSB memories from our regulars; this time, we’re sharing some great NSB members from some of the DJs and performers who were there to help us commemorate ten years of throwing this event. All of them have been with us and supported us all throughout this journey. They’re also part of what has made the NSB community the vibrant entity that it is. We’re delighted to share their stories:
Amar’s one of a handful of peeps who has always been there for us from day one! He’s the “all hands on” helper anyone would be lucky to have. You’ll find him in the background helping with everything the night of. He’s usually upstairs in the visual booth when he’s not running around. Next time you are at NSB, go up and say hi!
“Who knew when I walked into my first Non Stop Bhangra, which was the first one ever, that I would not only be attending almost every one thereafter, but as a member of the crew. I remember that very first NSB at Punch Gallery. I was fortunate to connect with this amazing crew shortly after as guest DJ and eventually resident VJ and DJ. It has been an amazing experience watching the event, the audience and crew change and grow over the years – while remaining true to its roots. Being a part of that growth and ever-diversifying community has made the years fly by. I can’t believe we’re at 10 years. Happy Anniversary to us!”
One of our favorites and most regular guest DJ’s! J’s First Non Stop Bhangra was #5 wayyyy back when! Thanks Boogie, Biggups!!!
“One of the best parties I’ve played at in San Francisco, where the people respond to the music in such an energetic way, they get their dance on and go crazy. My first time at NSB, I didn’t even realize there was a place to learn the dance steps. I saw a diverse group of people of all ages, color and gender all learning! DJing NSB for the past 10 years has opened my mind and ears to the amazing cultural mashup of Bhangra. I love hearing the drums play over the DJ as we blend hip hop, reggae and Bollywood over the Punjabi beat”
Chatman brought his reggae riddims into the mix back in the days of the NSB Collective live performances. It was so great having him back for our ten year celebration. Biggups Chatman, we’ve got some memories in the books with ya!
“I first heard of the Non Stop Bhangra night back in 2006. While living in Seattle, I was searching online for DJs to send out a copy of a Reggae/Bhangra/Hip-Hop song I had just recorded. I came across the NSB night online and thought to myself ‘Wow, that would be a fun party to go to SF and perform in’. So, I sent a copy of the song to NSB co- founder Vicki Virk and she told me that she enjoyed it and to keep up the good work. A year later, I was invited to come down to SF to perform at a night with a DJ friend of mine, Soulsalaam. The night he was playing at was the Non Stop Bhangra night that I had heard about online!!
And after finally making it to NSB night I immediately felt a connection to the open minded cultural expression and to everyone involved. And they felt a connection to me as well because after that night they invited me to come back to SF to join them onsatge as their MC during their Stern Grove festival debut. Shortly after that performance they invited me to become a regular part of the NSB party at The Rickshaw Stop and I started traveling monthly from Seattle to SF to perform at the energetic nights alongside fellow emcee Mandeep Sethi . Dubbed “The Non Stop Bhangra Collective” we eventually took the party on the road and began performing in festivals & special events in places like Reno, Los Angeles, Canada, New York, Virginia & New Mexico.
And for me, what I appreciate most about the night & the collective is that although we are from different backgrounds, we are able to come together and contribute our own individual expression all under the vibration of the Bhangra beat. And as being a longtime fan of the Reggae/Punjabi vibe from artists like Apache Indian, I am honored to be a part of a collective where I can contribute my style of Reggae Dancehall to the genre. So Big Up & Nuff Respects to DJ Jimmy Love, Vicki, Suman, Dholrhythms, Rav-E, Mandeep for inviting me along to be a part of the colorful ride!!”
Mandeep also brought his rhymes to the NSB Collective. We’ve been through a lot with this brother and we were happy to welcome him home for this celebration! Back to Front Hands up!!!
“Non Stop Bhangra is where it all began in SF for me. I was a student at SF State, and when I went to check out the party at the Rickshaw, I couldn’t believe it. It was a beautiful mix of people from all around the world, enjoying a pure and joyous vibe based strictly off the music and energy. To me, Non Stop Bhangra will always be a place where people can enjoy Bhangra music and be free in their spirit and who they are. This anniversary is a celebration of all the hard work put down by DJ Jimmy Love, Dholrhythms, and the rest of the beautiful crew!!”
We are so proud of him! DJ (he debuted at NSB 21, February 2007), Dholi, and now a wicked producer! In whatever role he’s in, he makes the NSB dance floor bounce!
“The first time I attended Non Stop Bhangra I was 19 and accompanied by a group of friends from college who had heard about a fun Bhangra night in the city. I had no idea what to expect because I was under the impression that all Bhangra party’s in the bay were college desi events. Boy was I in for a surprise! My first night attending Non Stop Bhangra as a guest shattered any stereotypes and expectations I had regarding what a fun Bhangra event is like. I remember being amazed at watching people of all ages, and ethnicities getting down to the same kind of music I had grown up listening to. Being raised in the Central Valley, a place where many first generation Punjabis settle, I grew up thinking that this music was limited to the Punjabi community and it was a ‘thing’ that only other Punjabi kids knew about. But as I stood on the balcony at the Rickshaw Stop looking down towards the sea of dancing attendees, I remember feeling proud and excited at the sight of so many people enjoying Bhangra music. At the end of the night, I felt that I had to speak with the people hosting this event. I approached DJ Jimmy Love and told him about how I am a DJ as well and how I had such a great time. Following that night, Jimmy and I kept in touch and he eventually offered me an opening slot 4 months later.
Being a fresh new DJ in SF was not easy. The opportunity to spin at NSB was my big break! Thinking back to the first time I DJ’ed at NSB feels like a blur! It was in February of 2007. I remember feeling a bit nervous before getting on the decks. But once the music started pumping and I got into my element, I had a blast. The crowd was very receptive and occasionally cheered when the bass would drop in a song. A few months down the line Jimmy welcomed me to the NSB family and I became a resident DJ and Dhol Player. For the next 7 years of my life, I became a part of something bigger than myself. Every time I got behind the decks or on stage at NSB, I felt that I was doing a selfless service for the music and culture by sharing the energy of Bhangra with so many people. The raw energy from the music and the crowd is addicting.
Being a part of NSB has changed my life. Not only has this event allowed me to connect to my culture, it made me part of something genuine that brings people together. I can’t imagine my life without Bhangra!”
Part of what makes the NSB sound special is bringing on DJs who aren’t “bhangra DJs”, who bring their own special perspective to playing Punjabi music. Santero has been part of the NSB family for years, and we were excited to have him celebrate our anniversary with us!
“The first time I had the pleasure of deejaying at NSB was back at The Rickshaw Stop in San Francisco. I was so nervous about playing my first ever all Bhangra set, so I spent the whole month before practicing! I arrived early and the club was already packed as usual. About ten minutes into my set I looked up and saw my name and face being projected onto the big screen all giant sized. I totally lost it for a minute right then!
About twenty minutes into my set the balcony started bouncing up and down from all the people that rushed the DJ booth to dance with me. My records started skipping from all the dancers and I even had to ask DJ Jimmy Love to please tell the dancers to chill a little bit! I’ll never forget that night & every night I’ve played at NSB since then. Thank you Non Stop Bhangra for always making me feel like a super star every time!”
And of course, we can’t finish without some words from our fearless leaders! Thanks, Jimmy, Vicki, and Suman for persevering in your vision, and bringing San Francisco the wonderful phenomenon that is Non Stop Bhangra!
Jimmy Love: “Having started at NSB #1, I can safely say I never thought we would be a 10 year event in the Bay Area. I remember everything from helping name the event to finding our first space. 10 years on, and we have turned thousands of people onto the Punjabi vibes I fell in love with. I have always been someone drawn to bringing people together, and it is really personally satisfying in this day and age to know we are doing all we can to provide a platform which brings cultures together. The world needs more positive melting pots to see how alike we all are at the core. Music and dancing together in the community being a catalyst, and I hope in some way we have inspired more people to go for it and create something. I have grown beyond years with this experience, gained life long friends & family, all while getting to feel a part of this beautiful cities culture that I am so happy to call home.”
Suman: “The one time I am completely free of all things negative and am in the moment is when I am dancing. Having Bhangra in my life had given me not only an outlet but also true blissfullness which I call “Soul Therapy”. Non Stop Bhangra has become such a normal part of our lives over the last decade that I sometimes forget what it has become and how it has impacted so may lives. As I look at the frenzy of dancing and the big smiles at every NSB, I am reminded why we do this. My hope is that NSB provides a little bit of “Soul Therapy” for everyone that walks through that door once a month to get their groove on. Thanks to all the die hards and all who come to try it for the first time and to all who put in the hard work all month long to create the experience that is Non Stop Bhangra. Here is to another decade!”
Vicki: “Words can’t quite summarize what a journey this has been. Never in a million years did i think NSB would become what it has. There isn’t a day that goes by that i am not grateful for being able to do what we do. The most amazing thing about NSB is that we’ve been able to share something joyful with countless number of people from all walks of life. Its grown me immensely as a person and reminds me every time how small the world really is and that we are all connected in some way. It makes me so happy to see smiling faces in the crowd, letting go, and just being carefree, even if for a few moments. I hope we can continue to spread the infectious joy to as many people as possible. NSB, you are a gem! As suman said, here’s to another decade!”
Happy Anniversary to us! Here’s to ten more years!
Graphics by Jimmy Love
Most images in graphics by Odell Hussey
Photo of Chatman and Mandeep by Ashima Yadiva
Photo of Chatman by Pamela S. Eaton-Ford
All other photos by Odell Hussey or Shalu Kumar-Narayan