1. When did you realise music and particularly DJing was your cup of tea?
I used to mix songs on double cassette-player before i formally decided to be a DJ. Everyone who partied on my mix tapes said i have a great sense of track selection and the appreciation of those people made me want to be a DJ.
2. How the DJing thing all started?
There were no profound Dj-ing schools back in 1997, so i joined a Adersh sound and light company in Delhi as a sound labor/DJ for rupees 300 to understand digital connections of console. I taught myself Dj-ing in one year, while shifting jobs in Delhi.
3. One often call Music and Bollywood as unpredictable fields, how did your parents react when you decided your career path?
I keep surprising my mom and dad with transitions in my career choices. When i told them about Djing they were in dilemma initially as no one in my family/country had heard a girl who wanted to pursue Dj-ing but they supported me when they understood im going to work in a console surrounded by bouncers of the club. When i told them i want to move to mumbai to pursue music composing in Bollywood, my mom and dad kept visiting me and never made me feel like I’m alone. Honestly without their encouragement and support, I wouldn’t have come so far.
4. What all challenges you had while entering into this field and how would you guide the young budding music aspirants?
Nothing comes easy! Treading on the paths of one’s chosen profession has its price and even after getting employed in a proper discotheque there were occasions where i had to face stalkers and wannabe’s following me way back home. There was an instance where a gun was pointed at me just because i didn’t accept the request to play their preferred song. Also there were times when i was pampered by audience with flowers, chocolates, cards etc, as it was very new to them to see a girl mixing beats in india. Initially getting a song/ album wasn’t really easy and back then buying a vinyl was the only option and that too if you have a friend traveling abroad and bringing in stuff from other countries. Since 1997 there has been numerous innovation and advancement which are easily available for a beginner now, like Denon / Pioneer CD players at that time had only cue, play, eject and pitch.
I really feel good when i see today someone taking up Djing as a serious career and not just a profession of easy money and glamour. Successful DJ needs to know the pulse of the crowd so best is to practice skills in a club. Know your track selection in depth like its history, time signature, key scale and moods.
Irrespective of being talented, the problems new composers face is not getting paid, no separate music videos to promote their song, copyright issues of music and lyrics, censor broad issues, credit promotion issues, list is very long. The only way to solve this and be successful is a legal contract at the time of any film producer signs a composer
5. You are known as India’s first female DJ, what this really means to you?
I feel with big titles, comes with great responsibilities. To me it means I’m responsible to set the right examples for the other girls venturing into this field. Its been 18 years of Djing now, every now and then dj’s irrespective of male or female, approach me with their problems and I’m happy to guide them.
6. As a composer, lyricist and DJ, what really inspires you in present day?
Real life situations, social issues, relationships and my non-existing fantasies.
7. Tell me about your current projects for which you are working on
Its too soon to talk about my projects at the moment all I can say my projects includes films and music videos under my film production banner.
8. Your future plans
To venture into film making and keep working hard.
9. Who’s your favorite DJ in India and abroad and music composer in Bollywood?
Its too difficult to pick one as i appreciate everyone but to be precise i find RD Burman and Charlie Chaplin’s compositions very entertaining.
10. On personal note, your man of dreams.
Transparent, supportive and loving.
11. What do you do in your spare time, your leisure activities.
I like watching movies, spending time with family, relax on a beach. I try to unwind my brain by practicing it to go blank as it’s very important to rest the brain with body to prepare for next project, so that I can strike a right chord in audience. I also like to read a lot about topics related to music and films, it helps me in story/lyric writing and conceptualizing projects.
12. Any message for music lovers and your fans
Wherever I’m standing in life is only because of fan’s love and support. I’m nothing without them. A small message to music lovers would be pls pls pls buy original music and help us stop music piracy.
13. Last but the least, if not music, what would you have opted for?
I cant think of doing anything else other than being in entertainment industry.