By Natalia Ningthoujam
NEW DELHI– Udyan Sagar aka DJ Nucleya has done it all – reintroduced classic Bollywood songs like “Dum maro dum” and “Disco dancer”, fused South Indian street and folk music with his signature bass heavy sound, and even experimented with nursery rhymes.
He believes that the masses are aware of “good and bad music” and that the DJs don’t have to depend on Hindi film tracks for survival.
The artiste, who began his journey in the industry towards the end of the 1990s when he co-founded the musical act Bandish Projekt, says since there is more awareness about electronic music in India as compared to 10 or five years back, DJs can explore more.
“There was a time when I thought that (doing Bollywood mixes) was the only option, that it was the basic way to survive. I didn’t know whether my music would work in India or not. Surprisingly, it’s working in my favour. In today’s age, I don’t think you need to play only Bollywood mixes to survive in the industry,” Nucleya told IANS in an interview.
“People are aware and they know good or bad music. It just needs to be interesting and fresh. People will understand it. So, as artistes, they should do what they want to, explore music and be true to themselves,” said the artiste, who describes his music as “a mix of everything” and says that it’s a “genre in itself ; that’s why I hate to call it EDM (electronic dance music)”.
Now a solo artiste, currently on his “Bass Rani” album tour, he is a regular at music fests held across the country. He has also performed at various international music festivals including Glastonbury and Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
How important is it for him to be the main act of a festival?
“Headlining is not important. All bands have their own sound. It doesn’t make a difference whether I am headlining or not. I remember there was a gig which had four acts in total. I was the second one on stage. But I had the maximum amount of people compared to other acts. I think it’s the energy that’s more important,” he said.
The former Delhi resident even spins the disc at various clubs. Ever asked to specifically play Bollywood or Punjabi music?
“That rarely happened in a gig or two. People know the sort of music I do. They come prepared for that. So, they don’t ask me to play Bollywood or Punjabi music in particular. They know I am going to play my own music,” he said.
In fact, contrary to what most people assume, the “Akkad bakkad” hitmaker thinks that Delhi’s music scene is a “balanced” one.
“I was in Delhi for about five years. We shifted to Goa six months back. Delhi’s pollution was bad. Me and my son kept falling ill. So, we shifted out. But professionally, that place is good for any artiste. It’s balanced and not dominated by film music,” said Nucleya.
He is yet to check out the music scene of Goa, which hosts some of the country’s biggest EDM fests including Sunburn and Supersonic.
“I haven’t explored Goa’s music scene so much. The intention was to stay in a calm place. In the next couple of years, I will understand their music scene,” he said.
For now, he is looking at “two big scale Bollywood films”.
“One of them is ‘Kapoor & Sons’. I also released an album a couple of months back and I am still on tour. I will take off from March for some time, then will work on a new material,” signed off the artiste, whose “Mumbai dance” has been used in the National Award-winning actor Manoj Bajpayee-starrer short film titled “Taandav”.