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Arjun Vagale, DJ of the Month Aug’17

Arun Vagale - DJ of the month Aug'17 Exhibit Magazine

Arjun VagaleMaking big sound in the music circuits ever since he pioneered the EDM wave in India, we got India’s leading Dj Arjun Vagale on board for a chat as the DJ of the Month for our August issue. We discussed his inspiration, journey, music and tech preferences in a very interesting interview that is compiled here.

Exhibit: Arjun Vagale – the journey.
Arjun Vagale: Well, it’s a pretty long one of over 20 years now. I started very young, obsessed with music and I always wanted to perform. It led to joining school bands where I was totally into rock & metal. Then I discovered electronic music and thereon, various residencies around India, forming an electronic live act, and then my solo DJ career to now.

Exhibit: What inspired you you take up DJing as a profession?
ArjunI honestly never had any another career path. I knew music is what I wanted to do right from an early age and my folks where super supportive. Genres changes but my love for music remained.

Exhibit: Share some of the challenges that you faced along the way.
ArjunWay too many! In a country where the only form of music that is respected is Hindustani classical, it’s been a tough ride to forge a name for myself and keep pushing forward.

Exhibit: Then and now – what’s different about the EDM scene in India?
ArjunWe never really did have one, and its off the backs of a handful of DJ’s & promoters that it’s reached a space where it is now. From being a scene where there were a few clubs and no festivals in India – today we have an abundance of them in every city.

Exhibit: Electronic music scene in India right now and in the next 5 years?
Arjun: India is the last frontier and the future is bright.

Exhibit: Your best gig and your dream gig?
ArjunCannot pick one best, there are a few – BPM Festival in Mexico, Baum in Bogota, Womb in Tokyo, Wonderfruit Festival in Thailand and Supersonic in India. Dream gig – well, I’m playing at Awakenings this summer and that has been on my to-do list for a long time!

Exhibit: Elaborate on your label and other initiatives.
ArjunI run a label called ODD Recordings with my buddy Ramiro Lopez. I also co-own and run UnMute Agency with Dev Bhatia, and ILM Academy wit my brother Nakul.

Exhibit: Arjun Vagale and Tech – what is the relationship like?
ArjunIntimate. I play and produce Techno so without Tech, there is no techno 😉

Exhibit: Name some of the gadgets that are most useful for professional purposes.
ArjunEverything in my studio really. Drum Machines, Synths, computers – its all one big geek fest!

Exhibit: Which has been the highest career point and highlight of your career.
ArjunI think the highlight for any artist is when their music is appreciated and for me, being appreciated by my heroes Richie Hawtin, Carl Cox & Adam Beyer is probably the highlight.

 

I play and produce Techno so without Tech, there is no techno 😉

 

Exhibit: Describe the life of a DJ?
ArjunPlaying around the world to new audiences & meeting interesting people along the way sums up the life of a DJ. Though of late, the travel bit is not so fun anymore so that is also a challenge.

Exhibit: Is the underground scene in India completely explored?
ArjunWe have a long way to go. A lot of Indian artists don’t realise how small the world is and with hard work, anything is possible. There are a lot of great artists in India and with a little self confidence, we as a scene can be world class!

Exhibit: How are the EDM scenes different here and abroad?
ArjunMusic unites all. So apart from skin colour & language, it’s all the same.

Exhibit: What would you be found doing when not touring or making music?
ArjunCooking or watching TV.

Exhibit: Advice for aspiring DJs.
ArjunWork hard and believe in yourself. Take risks and think out of the box.

Quickies

  • First gig: School prom.
  • One song on loop: Sound of Silence.
  • Undying mantra of your life: Quality, not Quantity.
  • Favourite track from your own music: Most recent – OddBall.
  • Most unique tech gadget: My Modular Synth.
  • Instruments you play/Wish your played: Drums.
  • One quintessential day in the life of Arjun Vagale: Eat, Music, Eat, Music.
  • Best piece of advice given to you: Be humble.
  • One genre you’d like to try that’s not EDM: Jazz.
  • One song you can die playing: Born Slippy.
  • One thing that gets on your nerves: Fake people.
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