Metroplus

The music mixer

Born and based out of Dubai, Shadow took up DJing when he was 17 and in school. Photo: R. Ravindran  

He's an established DJ now, yes, but a little over a decade when Satheerth Kunneth took part in a War of the DJs contest he didn't quite finish at the top. In fact, he was the first to be eliminated. “The guy who won was my friend and no he didn't become a DJ,” laughs Satheerth better known as DJ Shadow Dubai now. Why the mysterious name? “The trend was to have a funky name. Most DJs have a moniker. Someone suggested Shadow, I liked it and used it. But there's another U.S-based DJ Shadow so I became DJ Shadow Dubai,” he grins.

Born and based out of Dubai, Shadow took up DJing when he was 17 and in school. The reason he gives isn't the usual “I always wanted to do that,” instead he says, “It was because of all the attention from girls and the fame and the crazy lifestyle that came with it.” But he always loved music, and then five years back the music maker got serious about it. He played at his school and got his first break at 21 at a club in Dubai called Kandy Club where he played alongside popular international DJs. In his ninth year now, Shadow is enjoying his job and the challenges that come with it.

“Unless you are passionate about DJing, its going to be tough. We travel to various destinations and play. Sometimes back to back and there's the risk of it getting monotonous unless you are driven by passion,” he says.

Shadow plays Bollywood, a genre that has progressed over the years and is popular everywhere. Once, while playing at Saint Martin in the Caribbeans, he didn't really expect the crowd to know Hindi songs but was taken by surprise when they danced and sang along, requesting for the latest numbers. “People, of late, like mix and match of sounds. Every city has different likes. Delhi likes their Bollywood music with Punjabi beats, Chennai and Mumbai on the other hand like EDM mixed with Bollywood,” he explains and adds, “Nowadays, DJ's can't decide earlier to play a fixed set of tunes. They need to get to the venue and gauge the mood.”

The 30-year-old also does a lot of official remixes and has worked with Jay Sean, Yo Yo Honey Singh, Jazzy B, Rishi Rich, Stereo Nation and remixed songs such as ‘Tum Hi Ho’ and ‘Sunn Raha Hai’ from Aashiqui 2 and the Ek Villian mashup. “Next I am coming up with my own album by the end of September. It'll have songs and that's all I can divulge for now,” he adds as he gears up for a night at Pasha at The Park. As a DJ you can’t please everybody, but he tries to, he says. If somebody isn't happy with Shadow's music, he makes it a point to get their feedback, and perhaps that's why his Facebook and Youtube pages have a mix of bouquets and brickbats.


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Printable version | Jan 25, 2022 6:02:30 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/the-music-mixer/article6203922.ece

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