Berbician Bunty Singh copped the Chutney King title for a second time at this year’s National Chutney competition at the Leonora Ground on the West Coast Demerara on February 18.
The artiste, who also won the crown in 2016, garnered the top points again in what he described as an easy victory when he competed against nine other finalists.
He stormed the Leonora stage with his song “Banawarie Married to Poonwasie”. The song speaks of the Dulaha (Hindi for groom) getting married to the Dulahin (Hindi for bride). As is the traditional custom, a ‘luckni’ which is usually an old woman would sleep between the couple on the wedding night. However, there came a twist in the song when the Dulaha fell for the Luckni. While Bunty sang of how the Luckni stole the groom’s heart, his usual power performance that he’s widely known for, stole the hearts of everyone else present there.
Not only did he manage a landslide victory, but he also worked along with six of the finalists preparing them for the competition; two of them copped the second and fourth places.
“I’m really happy about winning,” he said. “I’ve invested a lot of time and effort and finance to have the dancers and the band part of this and it’s paid off,” he told The Scene.
This is Bunty’s ninth year in the Chutney Competition. He finished fourth in 2009, third in 2015, won the following year, came second last year and now is in first place again.
When asked if he thought he was a front-runner from the start, he said he did and further explained that though he worked assiduously with others he knew he would compete with, when he saw the rehearsals, he was confident that his experience would have brought it home for him.
The Chutney King said that most of his support came from his wife who sat down with him and assisted in coming up with the lyrics.
Bunty is the manager/owner of BKVJ Studio where he’s been producing a number of new songs for himself and other artistes including Guyana’s Terry G and a few other Guyanese artistes residing in North America including Prince JP. At present he and Terry G are working on a new album to release by April. The album is expected to have a total of 12 songs and is said to be a fusion of Bollywood/Reggae/Soca genres.
According to the artiste, he and his BKVJ Bombastic Band recently made a trip to Suriname where they performed. They toured and performed in New York and Miami Florida as well. The team was scheduled to play at the Big Chutney Glow in Canada but cancelled so he could go after the Chutney Title. “I sacrificed the trip for the crown,” he said.
Bunty took the opportunity to thank all his sponsors including Shakti Strings, his wife and his supporters and most importantly, God.
Sasenarine Hitnarayan with “Guyanese Larki” came second while Steven Ramphal with “Mujhe Sangeet se Pyar Hai” finished third and Arijit Singh with “Wedding Story” in fourth place. Bunty walked away with the prize of $800,000, while the runners-up got $600,000, $400,000 and $200,000 respectively.
Persons interested in recording their songs can reach Bunty at numbers 327-5534 or 654-3700.