Music

On the right track

DJ Zaeden is 21 and already beckoning international stardom on the EDM stage. Here’s what the turntable talent has to offer to music lovers

When it comes to stealing the spotlight, no one does it smoother than DJ Zaeden. Sahil Sharma who goes by the name DJ Zaeden is rapidly becoming the go-to name in India’s EDM circuit. From an enterprising mixer in his hometown in Gurgaon, to Tomorrowland and playing alongside Borgeous, the young artiste has come a long way in the music scene.

After praise from EDM heavyweights such as Hardwell, KSHMR and David Guetta, Zaeden’s biggest success till now has come from the official remix of a song by Maroon 5 and Kendrick Lamar, ‘Don't Wanna Know’ featured on their official page. Zaeden also closed for DJ David Guetta during his recent concert in Mumbai and is now gearing for the Looptopia Music Festival in Taiwan this April.

“It is exciting times,” he says ahead of his recent gig in Bengaluru. Performing to a packed audience at Café Mojo, the DJ had Bengaluru’s EDM crowd on their feet grooving to his new-age classical mash-up style. “I’ve got my hands full and I love it. It is always awesome when you love what you do and do what you love!”

Not his first time in the city, Zaeden says Bengaluru has its own charm. “The crowd and the music scene here is easily the most vibrant in the country. It’s always an honour to play for you guys.”

Pointing out that re-mixes give a new perspective to songs, Zaeden says he has seen EDM constantly evolve. “It is a privilege to be part of the EDM movement in the country. It has taken on so many forms and there is so much to experiment with.

Each of us can go in a new direction. I also love that people can take back new experiences and a good time every time they listen to me.” Having remixed songs by Maroon 5, Coldplay, Kendrick Lamar and more, Zaeden says each is a tick on his bucket list. “It is amazing to work on their songs. I’m proud to represent the country out there. I’m kicked about playing my music and showcase India’s diversity.”

Starting young

All of 21 years old, Zaeden started his musical career early on at the age of 14, DJing and mixing his favourite tracks. Kicking off with House, Zaeden moved on to Progressive House and Trance sounds and experimenting with genre-bending nuances. “Starting young has its advantages. I’ve learnt a lot and every new experience teaches me something new.”

Looking back, he adds: “I was inspired when I attended a concert and heard all the big names play, from Armin to Guetta. They were the ones I look up to. For me, to follow in their footsteps was the most obvious thing to do.” One of the coolest things he’s done is team up with Ankit Tiwari. “Working with him happened by chance, but I’m thoroughly glad it did. I never thought I’ll do anything with Bollywood since it is usually not my style of music, but teaming up with Tiwari brought out some interesting soundscapes. He brought what he’s good at and I got mine and we are extremely pleased with the outcome. We can’t wait for people to hear it!”

Looking ahead, Zaeden says: “It is going to be a long journey. And I can’t wait to make more music.”

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Printable version | Apr 6, 2020 3:26:27 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/music/On-the-right-track/article17334650.ece

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