Mumbai– South Asia’s audio and music streaming service Saavn on Saturday announced its expansion into original music with the worldwide release of “Azaad Hu Mai”, a track from underground hip-hop artiste, Naezy.
With its Artist Originals programme, the platform reaches underground to accelerate new artistes, produce originals and merge East-West talent.
Saavn will now conceptualise, produce and distribute new music with independent artistes in India.
The collaboration with Naezy is reflective of India’s burgeoning interest in hip-hop and its emergence into South Asian pop culture.
Talking about it, Naezy said in a statement: “Saavn is making huge strides, giving the hip-hop movement in our country a crucial platform and I am happy to be a part of this.
“I look forward to be the first to grace the Artist Originals programme as we curate a larger movement that gives artistes across our country an opportunity to shine.”
Born into an orthodox Muslim family and raised in one of Mumbai’s biggest slums, Naved Shaikh aka Naezy had a rough upbringing and found solace in music and rhyme, battling the odds and righting a wrong.
He created and shot his first song on an iPad, amplifying his sound via the internet, quickly becoming a prominent name in the underground music scene, highlighting the issues that exist in city’s ghettos, resonating with the outrage felt by the country’s youth in regard to class, religious and cultural barriers.
His newest track “Azaad Hu Mai”, is an ode to his journey from the slums of Mumbai to a rising star.
Paramdeep Singh, Co-founder and Executive Chairman of Saavn, said: “In India, mainstream music is correlated with film music, so most independent artistes are releasing their music DIY.
“With Artist Originals, we become a voice for India’s underground artistes, supporting and accelerating their growth, while allowing them the freedom to express themselves in their own way — both visually and musically.”