Do you absolutely LOVE the song “Tonight” by Amar Sandhu and Pranna? How about their track “Rooftop Party” with Mickey Singh? Or Mickey Singh‘s latest track “Phone?”
Well then, I guess it’s time to meet the music producer behind it all—Upside Down! Canadian artist Upside Down left a corporate job in tech to pursue his passion for music full-time in Los Angeles.
The talented producer has proven that he’s given the world a gift with his career change as we’ve just received the greatest songs to add to the soundtrack of our life. The man creates magic with his music evidenced by all of the popular tracks he’s been releasing that are burning up the North American urban Asian music scene.
Being the man behind the curtain, not many of us know too much about Upside Down himself, so lucky for me I had a chance to sit down with the producer to get to know his story. Check out what he told us!
UA: Did you always want to be a musician? Did you study music in your youth?
Upside Down: I always wanted to be in the creative field such as animation or design, however, music was something I was really passionate about. I actually went to school for Mechanical Engineering and specialized in product design but continued to do music on the side.
UA: When did you decide to pursue a career in music and leave your life in Tech behind?
Upside Down: I’ve made music all my life but coming from a South Asian family, there was always a push to get a steady and stable career. However, music chose me after all. I left my corporate job a couple of years ago and have never regretted it. Now I get to do what I love every single day of my life.
UA: Asian parents are always hesitant about their children pursuing a career in the arts, how did they feel about your switch to a music career?
Upside Down: My parents always felt that I had an artistic bent of mind and were always supportive of my endeavors.
UA: Do you play any instruments? Do you have any musical training?
Upside Down: I did not receive any music training as a kid. When I was young, I started messing around with an old keyboard that we had at home and pretty much taught myself. As a musician, you’re always learning and so am I. Also, I play the guitar just enough to get by.
UA: When did you get your first big break as a producer?
Upside Down: I was doing a lot of underground Hip Hop and R&B projects in Toronto but broke into the urban Asian scene with Amar Sandhu & PRANNA’s track “Rooftop Party” with Mickey Singh. I produced the track almost a year before it came out and it was sitting in my beats archive. The rest is history.
UA: You moved to LA from Toronto to pursue your music career, what has been the biggest difference you see in the two cities?
Upside Down: LA can be very laid back but has also helped me connect with a lot of people in the music industry as well as collaborate with musicians from all walks of life. Toronto will always be special—it is somewhere that I got to really work on my craft as a musician and gave me the opportunity to move to LA.
UA: Tell us about your journey, what are some challenges you’ve faced as an artist?
Upside Down: The biggest challenge a lot of artists face in the industry is for people to understand the amount of hard work and dedication it requires to be a musician. Music is always changing and even though a lot of musicians disagree with this, you always have to stay current. Having said that, I feel like a lot of the south Asian audience is embracing new music and the movement, which is what a lot of musicians want as well.
UA: How did the track “Rooftop Party” come about?
Upside Down: Interestingly, Rooftop Party was originally a straight R&B track with no Indian instruments or influence. However, one night, after returning from a desi event, I felt inspired to incorporate our culture into the track, which led to what “Rooftop Party” is today. I think Amar Sandhu and Mickey Singh blessed the track with their vocals and took it to another level.
UA: Are you surprised by all of the success of the song?
Upside Down: Absolutely—I’m also humbled by the success “Rooftop Party” has received within the past few months. We ended up creating something different and unique and I think our audience really enjoyed it.
UA: Tell us about the other tracks you’ve produced for Amar and Pranna on the “New Era” album, what was it like working with the guys?
Upside Down: I produced “Tonight,” “Rooftop Party” and “4AM (Afterhours)” on the “New Era” album and it was a pleasure working with Amar & Pranna. Music led us to friendship and we always make it a point to jam every time we are in the same city together.
UA: Recently your track with Mickey Singh, “Phone” has hit a million views in less than 5 days, what inspired that song?
Upside Down: As a musician, you’re always reinventing yourself and in the process, sometimes we forget to have fun with it. We wanted to create a happy and fun record that everyone could vibe to. Again, very humbled by the response we received and it has sparked motivation to do even better.
UA: If you could collaborate with any artist, who would it be?
Upside Down: I’ve been inspired by Kanye West pretty much all my life and would love to collaborate with him should opportunity knock the door.
UA: What’s next for you, any new releases on the horizon?
Upside Down: A lot more music and collaborations in the pipeline! I’m also working on my album as we speak and hope to release it sometime next year.
You heard the man, keep it locked for some more fire tracks releasing in 2017!