The Bhojpuri Queen Kalpana was bestowed the Bhikhari Thakur Samman by the Union Minister of Tourism Mr. Sultan Ahmed in the 1st Bhikhari Thakur Festival hoisted jointly by WAJA – Writers and Journalist Association of India and Vishwa Bhojpuri U-Than Kalyan Samaj in the pious city of Kolkata on 15th March 2011.
This Assamese girl Kalpana is a breakthrough in Bhojpuri music and has carved herself a special niche in the Bhojpuri music world credited with reviving and promoting the Bhojpuri music industry all over the world and bringing back traditional forms of music to the International stage. Indian folk music particularly of Northern India has been showcased and revived by Kalpana in a big way.
Kalpana brings the original vibrancy and richness of the Bhikhari Thakur folk forms to the World wide so that people from the world over can experience the originality and richness of Bhojpuri music.
Says Kalpana, there is no recorded songs on Bhikhari Thakur till date and The Legacy of Bhikhari Thakur will be the first rare one releasing from TIMES MUSIC.
This album will give a chance to uncover the unique flavor of Bhikhari Thakur and listen to the unadulterated voice of Kalpana piercing right through to your soul.
Says Kalpana,how inspired I am by Bhikhari Thakur’s life, how the legend has shaped the future of Bhojpuri music.
Bhikhari Thakur songs are rich in imagery and heavy in Bhojpuri dialect.
This new album on Bhikhari Thakur will be a true benchmark in the annals of Bhojpuri Music Industry and will set new standards for Bhojpuri music. This album has something that’s not easily done; introducing a new genre of music to the people and having them accept it without hesitation.
As a singer, she has been recognized with Bhikhari Thakur Samman in Jamshedpur, Swar Kokila, Swar Samragee , Bhojpuri Swar Mallika, Bhojpuri Sewa Samman, Bhojpuri Sangam Samman, Panchamrit Samman, Atkrista Gayak Samman, The Bhojpuri Queen to name a few.
Recently Kalpana’s song Aila Re Aila from film Khatta Meetha has been nominated for the BEST ITEM SONG CATEGORY OF THE YEAR at Radio Mirchi’s 98.3 FM’s – 3rdUninor Mirchi Music Awards held on 27th of January 2011 at the Bandra Kurla Complex.
Her Chhath song “”Saiya Chali Aawa Karat Bani Chhath”” from Chhath album “Aage Bilaiyya Peechhe Chhati Maiya” is nominated for best song in folk category in BIG STAR IMA AWARDS held in 11th March 2011 in Mumbai.
Popular Bhojpuri singer Kalpana has got four nominations for awards in the biggest music award function “BIG I am a Star Award”. She has been nominated in four categories under Folk Music section for her Chhatha based music album “Aage Bilaiya Pichhe Chhathi Maiya”. The award function will be held on 11th March in Mumbai. The jury includes personalities like Javed Akhtar and to get four nominations to such a prestigious function is certainly something to be proud of. This is also a first time when a Bhojpuri album has been included in nomination for these awards. Kalpana has recently sang the songs of Hindi films like “Khatta Mitha” of Akshay Kumar, and “Aakrosh” by Ajay Devgan and her songs have become very popular.
In a country with over a billion people, countless languages and multitude of musical influences, it takes special talent to stand out from the crowd as an entertainer. Luckily talent is what Bhojpuri singer Kalpana has sacks full of.
One of the most popular Bhojpuri singers in India right now, Kalpana came to attention in 2002 with her breakout hit album, Gawan wa leja Rajaji. Since then she has become a household name having performed on over 150 Bhojpuri film soundtracks, 100 Hindi film songs sung ,recorded more than 400 radio and television jingles and presented Sur Sangram’s season 1 & 2 and other TV shows.
Kalpana has been finalized as the judge for the upcoming show NEHLE PE DEHLA “ Nan he Suron Ka Maha Sangraam” on Mahua Tv. The show will showcase the singing prowess of children from both UP & Bihar. In an age where talent coupled with great looks gives one the extra edge, the versatile singer is leaving no stone unturned as she gets ready to make a smashing appearance as one of the judges on Mahua Tv’s childrens music reality show NEHLE PE DEHLA. Apparently, Kalpana has been meticulously planning her looks as she wants to look young and contemporary. New hairdo, revamped wardrobe, a chiseled body… Kalpana can give even the Bollywood heroines a run for their money. Hai na?
‘Let’s get innocent hearts closer’ the show will bring together raw talented kids from all over UP & Bihar. The participants will be in the 8-13 years age group. NEHLE PE DEHLA is a musical forum and opportunity for budding talent for children from UP & Bihar. Says Kalpana, Mahua channel came up with this unique concept, something different – a show that will have kids from all over UP & Bihar teaming up in a singing reality show where boys competing with girls. The girl’s team is boosted by Kalpana whereas the boy’s team is goofed by Pawan Singh.
Kalpana says, of course all the children are same for me, whoever sings well, performs well, will win. But as for me on a personal note, I support the girls for being participants, because when I entered the Bhojpuri industry, girl singers were not seen with very good eyes. Achhe Ghar Ki Ladkiya Nahi Gati Hai –the so called society believed it. I entered the industry with bhajans, modern songs and even hot item numbers – but proved that it is only professional matter. Singing can also be a career for girls. The scenario has changed and I am the lucky one to set a trend.
Kalpana is an amazing mentors and she has personally handpicked every contestants by indoor and outdoor selection rounds in Patna, Lucknow, Banaras and other places. At present she is busy with her world music project THE LEGACY OF BHIKHARI THAKUR to be released from Times Music, trying to relive the country’s long-forgotten treasure of Bhojpuri folk music.
Bhojpurias are very egoistic and everyone thinks he is beyond criticism. At the same time the same person enjoys crticising others. Recently in the popular Bhojpuri reality show Sur-Sangram shown over Mahuaa TV channel had an exchange between two stalwarts of Bhojpuri Music. This lead to a chain of events ultimately casting a dark shadow on the channel and the society as well.
Bharat Sharma, a popular Bhojpuri singer of yore, was called as a special judge on the sets of Sur-Sangram, and was sitting between two permanent judges of the show – Malini Awasthi and Kalpana. Eight fresh contestants were introduced in that episode to challange the finalists, one each from U.P. and Bihar. To be honest, this was an immoral act on the part of the channel to take benefit of the increasing popularity of the show by extending the number of episodes. ANd ,naturally the permanent judges wanted to know from the contestants what special they have to challange the finalists. There was nothing wrong in it but Bharat Sharma opposed them and interrupted Kalpana not to do so. In reply Kalpana asked back, Is the contestant your relative? Every was stunned by her frank and fearless reply not falling in undue awe of a senior like Bharat Sharma, who is called Bhojpuri Samrat by his fans.
Matter should have been dropped by both the parties as the show ended but no. One of the party got so humiliated that his cronies took matter in their hands and started criticisng Kalpana branding her as a small time singer who does not know Bhojpuri culture and does not honour Bhojpuria stalwarts. Many things are being said against her. Many organisation are taking the benefit of this incident to come in the news. Even the parties involved seem to enjoy the cacophony saying it just a show business and any news is good news as long as it keeps them in the news. Bharat Sharma should haveebehaved like a senior but no, he appears in no mood to forgive Kalpana for her temerity to speak against him.
In the mean time another sequence was underway. The show was initailly planned for 35 episodes and so were the judges, the anchor, and the sponsor were contracted. Kalpana had other pre-arranged engagements, so she declined to extend her contract. So did the sponsor who refused to dole out more money and claimed to be the sponsor till final contest of the Sur-Sangram without paying any extra money as the serial has been extended without reason. The channel got another sponsor and wanted to run the show as usual. Manoj Tiwari was against it so he too declined to anchor the show. After a marathon meeting he was made to accept his new role as a judge in the show in place of Kalpana and now Ravi Kishan will anchor the show in place of Manoj Tiwari. Kalpana' no show in extended episodes is now cited by the cronies of Bharat Sharma as their win as they were demanding ousting of Kalpana.
This whole episode reconfirms that Bhojpurias dont take criticism in good spirit. A new group of Bhojpuri extremists is trying to take over the Bhojpuri as their person feedom and wants to silence every other voice which dares to oppose them. This new trend has to be nipped in the bud for the betterment of Bhojpuri culture and language otherwise these fundamentalists will take over and that will cause doom of everything related with Bhojpuri.
Bhojpuria ego seems to have rubbed into the non-Bhojpuria judges of Sur Sangram, a reality show shown on the first Bhojpuri TV Channel Mahuaa.
Contestants from UP and Bihar are showing their singing talent in this reality show. Malini Awasthi and Kalpana are the two judges who judge the contestants in every episode. But the two judges have no harmony amongst themselves. Malini Awasthi is said to be peeved due to the popularity of Kalpana amongst Bhojpuri population. Many of the contestants sing the popular songs of Kalpana or Manoj Tiwari in the serial and Malini seems to dislike it.
In the coming episode, due to be shown this week on Friday and Saturday on Mahuaa TV Channel, the two judges have an ugle spat between themselves. When Vijayeta Goswami, a contestant from Gorakhpur sang a popular song, Jeeja Ke Chhotka Bhai Ha, originally sung by Kalpana Malini said that the perfomance was worst and so she was lost somewhere in her thought. This was enough provocation for Kalpana who burst out saying was it the performance or the fact that it was her song? Malini replied that you have small mentality. Kalpana shot back saying yes, you sing for the upper class so you have a big mentality , I sing for the masses and so have a small mentality.
Kalpana is so angry with this incident that she is telling that it was a mistake for choosing no-Bhojpuria judges for a Bhojpuri reality show. It would have been proper had Bharat Sharma and Sharda Sinha were made the judges.
Malini says that it does not matter who sung the song originally. She was more concerned with the performance of the contestants and even if the contestant had sung a song originally sung by her and the performance was poor, she would have said so.
Fortunately the incident was managed skillfully by Manoj Tiwari, anchor of the show.
Sources : Based on the inputs from Prashant-Nishant and Ranjan Sinha.