Bengaluru-based Big Deal Launches ‘One Kid With a Dream’ EP
Samir Rishu Mohanty’s debut includes collaborations with North-East artists June Neelu, Borkung Hrangkhawl, Alobo Naga and more
Getting called out by other rappers or even making his own sly disses, Bengaluru-based Samir Rishu Mohanty aka Big Deal says beefs are natural. “Rap has always been competitive. Everyone’s always trying to be on top of their game,” he says.
Mohanty’s own attempt ”“ the seven-track One Kid With A Dream EP ”“ comes after more than a year of crowdfunding, recording, fine-tuning and releasing. Entirely produced by the rapper, the record raised about Rs 1.6 lakhs via crowdfunding (of the goal of Rs 2.5 lakhs) undertaken last year, but Mohanty says he knew he needed more, especially to create music videos. The shehnai-sampling lead single “One Kid,” for example, was shot in Puri, Darjeeling and Bengaluru. He says, “I’m spending about three or four times the amount I crowdfunded.” On “One Kid,” there’s some of the sharpest bars set to a club-friendly beat, Big Deal rapping about his journey so far, from growing up in Puri and Darjeeling and making it in Bengaluru. “I’ve had the crowd chant the words even when they didn’t know the songs, it has that earworm-ish feel,” Mohanty says of the song.
One Kid With A Dream is more or less autobiographical, but also features artists from the North-East contributing, with the powerhouse vocals of Agartala rapper Borkung Hrangkhawl and Dimapur-based pop rock vocalist Alobo Naga (“Not Chinese”), Imphal singer June Neelu (“One Dream”) and vocalist Mar Jamir from the Dimapur-based rock band Polar Lights (“Wrong This Time”). One of his other live favorites ”“ “I Hate You” ”“ is all Mohanty alone, juggling both roles as rapper and producer. He says about handling duties, “The final output really matters as a producer and I’m always looking at more than my own verse.”
On “I Hate You,” the rapper even turns to do a verse in Hindi, explicably talking about how desi and Hindi-language hip-hop shouldn’t overshadow English rap in India. “No one among promoters, record labels and venues are paying much attention to English rap. I’m going to change that, though.” With a multi-city tour in the works in February, with confirmed shows in Mumbai, New Delhi and Kolkata, Big Deal is on his way to prove that point.
Watch the video for “One Kid.” Buy the EP here.