We talked with DJ Shaan, who just released his first song with America’s premier music label Republic/Casablanca Records called Paradise, which features London based singer-songwriter Sakima. This release is a first for an electronic music artist from India to work with the prestigious label; home to artists like Ariana Grande, Taylor Swift, The Weeknd, Post Malone and many more. Ever since he became the first Indian artist to grace the stage of Tomorrowland, raising the tricolor high; DJ Shaan has continued to push boundaries and stand out as an inspiration to India’s 600 million under the age of 25.
1) What’s your story? Tell us how you started your career?
To be honest, it’s actually a very long story, to sum it up I started up my career as a hobby. I just enjoyed DJ’ing and then kept doing it because I loved it. Eventually, my family and team made me realize I could turn it into a career.
2) What was your favorite part about producing Paradise? What message do you hope to give to listeners?
Just working with the whole team behind it was such a great process; the singers, writers and the production team were just amazing. Some of the best people in the industry including the folks at Republic Records and my management team at Shark & Ink, everyone came together to bring this vision to life. Paradise is a really exciting song for me so I can’t wait to see the interactions.
3) What does it look like when you are producing your music? What is your process and what does it look like?
Haha, it looks like a guy in pyjamas playing with some random software to be precise! My process is simply based on feeling, I honestly love working with a vocal that has been recorded as opposed to writing music to have a vocal on it! I have mood swings so I don’t have a specific time for making music.
4) Why do you create music? What inspires you about it?
I make music with the aim to spread infectious euphoric emotions through the world. My feelings and drive to create inspires me, my family is definitely an inspiration!
5) How do you hope to bridge the gap between American and Indian music?
“Hope” is correct, because it will be really tough to actually bridge that gap. At one point, the Indian music industry was going to be the new Mecca of dance music but somewhere along the way, it has retreated back to its Bollywood roots. So it’s going to be very tough, the world is back to perceiving that Indian music is all Bollywood. I have been asked several times in the USA if I make Bollywood music and to their surprise I say no I’m signed to republic records. I really want to break that misconception that Indian artists only make Bollywood music, although it’s definitely going to be challenging!
6) What is your favorite part about being a DJ as Shaan? Any specific memories that come to mind?
Creating memorable experiences for people, helping them escape reality and feel calm or loved! To be honest a lot of memories come to mind, just the pure smiles of my fans in the crowd at shows or when I meet them is a strong enough memory to keep me going.
7) What are your future plans with your music?
You’ll have to wait and see 😉
8) What is one piece of advice you would give to aspiring musicians?
Be different, don’t chase easy glory. Be unique, a lot of people don’t and will grab the lowest hanging fruit and stick to it!