Hard Kaur is the performing name of Taran Kaur Dhillon, an acclaimed Indian-British rapper, singer, and actress. Born in Kanpur, Utter Pradesh, India, Dhillon lost her father at a young age and, when her mother remarried a British citizen, immigrated to the U.K. in 1991. Coming of age in Birmingham in the early '90s, she became interested in rap music, leaving school at 16 to pursue a music career. Over the next ten years, Dhillon, who had begun developing her Hard Kaur sound and persona by now, struggled to find opportunities as an Indian woman in the U.K.'s male-dominated hip-hop scene. Possessed of a strong will and ample talent, she eventually began to attract notice outside of Britain, playing in Europe, Israel, and the U.S., where she found work with major acts like Justin Timberlake and De La Soul.
Returning to the U.K., she finally broke out with the 2007 hit single, "Glassy," a collaboration with rap collective the Soma Family. The success of "Glassy" allowed her to release her debut LP, Supawoman, that same year while propelling her to stardom back in her home country of India. Over the next few years, Hard Kaur appeared in numerous Bollywood productions as a featured singer, rapper, and actress. She resumed her own solo recording career with 2012's P.L.A.Y. Party Loud All Year, released by Sony. Her talents as a lyricist and collaborator remained in demand in India, where she worked on everything from Coke commercials to writing a song for the FIFI World Cup. While maintaining her Bollywood career, she continued to record solo material, returning in 2017 with The Rising Mixtape, Vol. 1. ~ Timothy Monger