The Indian music industry needs better infrastructure for aspiring artistes, say Prayag Mehta and Rishab Joshi, who together make the Electronic Dance Music (EDM) team Lost Stories, which registered a debut in a list of Best EDM Artistes in the World this year.
Lost Stories — which secured the 52nd spot in the list released by world’s top EDM magazine DJ Mag — is set to perform at the debut India edition of the Global Citizen Festival, which will have star performers like Coldplay and Jay Z in Mumbai on Saturday.
Mehta and Joshi began working together in 2009 and have since performed at top music festivals in the world, including Tomorrowland, Mysteryland, Sunburn, Supersonic, Enchanted Valley Carnival. They agree that the talent pool in India is immense, but feel that it needs a push.
“We need to create better infrastructure for aspiring artistes to explore further. Indians are evidently very open-minded and receptive to newer sounds and genres of music. As Lost Stories that was initiated in 2009, we can only be grateful for the love and support that we have received,” Joshi told IANS in an email interview.
When it comes to EDM festivals in India, it is mostly Indian artistes who do the opening act for the international artistes headlining the day.
Commenting on that, Mehta said: “In our opinion, it’s never about the nationality of the artistes but it’s about the artistes potential, choice of music genre, versatility and the most important — mixing abilities that should be the parameter of allotting slots at the music festivals,” he said.
Talking about Indian music festivals like Sunburn and Supersonic in comparison to international festivals like Tomorrowland and Ultra Music Festival, Joshi said that over a span of a decade, Indian EDM festivals have definitely made a mark.
“We all can agree to the fact that it indeed has reached an international level of creating an experience incomparable to others. We believe that nothing is perfect and there is always a chance of improvement. Needless to say, we are extremely proud to see the pedestal the Indian music festivals have climbed, so far,” he said.
Asked if Indian artistes face problems when it comes to the right equipment needed to churn out music that can compete with international artistes, Joshi said that there is no such right equipment as they themselves have been producing music on “a MacBook and a pair of headphones for the longest time”.
“There are so many software and virtual synths available on Internet. One can transform ideas into actual projects or songs in no time. Of course, there are certain things which are absolutely necessary to consider while producing such as acoustics… But it is really up to an artiste to make the most out of the tools available to his or her disposal,” he said.
Tracing their journey from the time they started in 2009 till 2016, when their names appeared on DJ Mag, the members of Lost Stories describe their journey as “nothing short of a roller-coaster ride”.
“From having our debut single ‘False promises’ signed, to ‘Black Hole’ previously owned by Tiesto, to playing an opening set for Tiesto in Mumbai, from not knowing anything about publishing to inking an exclusive publishing deal with MusicAllStars, this journey has been full of struggle and happy surprises,” Joshi said.
The EDM artistes, who are known for their work in genres like Progressive house, Electro house and Big beat, have a lot of remixes to their credit and have released “India” on record label Spinnin’ Records, in a collaboration with artistes JETFIRE and Carta.
As a follow up to that single is a collaboration with Sick Individuals and Armaan Malik on a track called “Piya”.
(Kishori Sud can be contacted at email@example.com)
By Kishori Sud