Unity 101

Southampton Radio Channel

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Parminder Chohan

Parminder Chohan shows

Every Wednesday evening from 6pm-8pm, the sweet sounds of the Punjab flow across Southampton’s airwaves. In the programme, “Sur Punjab De”, presenter Mandeep Singh’s playlist is filled with geet boliyan and folk geet, traditional music from the Punjab. Mandeep, who himself was born in the Punjab, has lived in Southampton for ten years and loves sharing the sounds of his birth country with others.

There are two things that make “Sur Punjab De” unusual – firstly it is a request show, where listeners call in to request their favourite songs of the Punjab and secondly, the listeners get the opportunity to sing, live on air! These two features make for a very engaging programme, with Mandeep giving each listener 2-3 minutes to sing. Mandeep says, “My show is very different to other shows on Unity 101. I love it when listeners call in to sing – it makes the show really special. And when they sing, they’re often giving messages or dedicating the songs to others, like their family and friends; messages of friendships, greetings and thank yous. It makes people happy. It makes me happy.”

The opportunity for people to sing their favourite songs on air has contributed to the popularity of the programme, though Mandeep himself hasn’t been brave enough to sing any of his favourite songs as yet. When asked if he will, he said, “I do sing on air sometimes, towards the end of a song, and I would like to sing a full song one day. I just hope when I do, the listeners don’t turn their radios off!”

Will he or won’t he sing? Tune into the next “Sur Punjab De”, Wednesday at 6pm.