Changing Culture of Indian Clubsby OPINIONEXPRESS.IN December 24, 2018 0 comments
Most people might believe that Nucleya has been around only for the past few years. But the phenomenon that is Udyan Sagar, who is better known by his stage name, came about bit by bit since the 1990s. Today, he is the face of the beginning of electronic dance music (EDM) in India. And as if to acknowledge that he has finally arrived, a luxury and lifestyle magazine recently called Nucleya a force to be reckoned with.
So how did he first decide to make music through mixing some Indian Desi and international Rock beats? He laughs and answer that he always had the urge to find his own tunes. So he started using Indian, Western, Classical, Jazz, Electronic, Rock, together. He says, “The idea was just to make a new sound. It was very unintentional. I made music for myself. Like-minded people started getting attracted to it and that’s how it perhaps gained momentum.”
What really worked for Udyan was becoming a part of the musical group, The Bandish Projekt which “completely transformed” his understanding of music. However, he parted ways as he wasn’t expecting anything big but wanted to go in a contrastingly different direction and hence, started experimenting. It was at this time that “street music caught my interest.”
It was only after his album, Koocha Monster, released in 2013, attracted masses that Nucleya became a favourite among electronica fans in India. Koocha means ‘street’ in Urdu.
Success came through a circuitous path, he acknowledges, “I am not a trained musician. My creative process has been an open-ended one but at the same time exciting too.”
The Laung Gawacha composer talks about how he managed to bring the style of international EDM artists to Indian music thus making a mix that a very few artistes have done in the country. He says, “EDM music is very repetitive and hence, it is challenging to give it a new-looking sound everytime. The trick is to find what space can be filled within the palate of the Indian taste of music.”
Only a few of his fans know about Udyan’s projects during his teenage years in Ahmedabad. There was one known as the Local Ahmedabad Dance Music that he had launched as a genre more than 20 years ago. He reminisces about the past when asked about how he and his music evolved over time. He says that not just him but the overall music industry has evolved manifolds, including the audience. “There’s a much larger audience to reach out to today. The industry is massive now and is also full of opportunities. I personally feel that I have become more of a musician now as I have gained more awareness about diverse things and music.”
He feels that even though there is still a long way to go, he has found multiple means to always keep enhancing his music and be much more experimentative.
He highlights that when he first started, “there were lesser number of night clubs or party houses. People partied less. There was no concept of a ‘night life’ or ‘night culture.’ We only had some farm house parties to perform at. But today, it has evolved to become an industry. It’s grown huge. And it is not just limited to India or its music, but is also actively gathering inputs from international music as well. Clubs have today dedicated their regular music to this genre. Many of them have special ‘EDM nights.’”
The musician is now all geared up for his Sunburn Arena tour in six cities of India, which would also mark the launching of his new album, Tota Myna. The tour will be travelling to Mumbai, Chennai, Bengaluru, Guwahati, Jaipur, before culminating in Kochi.
He tells us that the album is the result of his long pending ideas of bringing Indian bass, reggae and dance music together along his profound love for experimental sounds of pop. The album has many collaborations including ones with actress and singer Shruti Hassan and singer and rapper Raftaar, along with indie artists, Rashmeet Kaur, Avneet Kurmi and Vibha Saraf.
Udyan reveals the significance of the title of the album, Tota Myna, “My mother called Smriti (wife) and me Tota Myna when we were younger. We were inseparable, like the love birds.”
He says about the album, “It represents the special place that love songs and pop music has in our lives. It is nostalgic as it reminds me of the time when we were not married.”
The album art is inspired by the love birds seen on the trucks in India.
There are always some stereotypes and stigmas associated with different music genres. There are some related to EDM music as well. Many studies have discussed the drug used at rave parties, which has led to the inevitable assumption that it is ‘drug music.’ It is known to be linked to substance abuse and escapism. However, Udyan would like to strongly disagree and insists that it is a “myth.”
He says, “I don’t agree that EDM is linked to drug or substance abuse. Due to some people, such activities are creating a harmful image of those who are passionate about the music as an art form. Associating the two things negate the artistic value and the creativity of music. It not only trivialises the culture around it but also spoils the fun for those who actually only came for amusement.”
(The musician also performed in the city yesterday.)
Writer: Chahak Mittal
Source: The pioneer