A Psychedelic maestro who doubles up as an IT guy, Rajesh Dash, garnered a viewership in millions and made his global presence on YouTube. His channel is one of the top channels in the world to garner a viewership of 25+ million, subscriber-based, for Psychedelic Trance Music.
He faced psytrance, for the first time, during his trip to Goa, HillTop New Year Party, in 2013 and connected to the Psy-frequencies instantly. Thus, he credits this party to be the reason why he began what he’s doing.
Investing six hours a day in, nothing but, listening to the PSY music, he had several records ready, by the end of 2014, to try his mixing skills on. He began to play at his friends’ house parties and the crowd loved what he played. Thereupon, he started posting videos on YouTube. That’s how his first ever mix, Karma, went online in December 2014. Its success made him post nine other mixes in 2015. Since then there was no looking back.
His first stint as a DJ happened in early 2016, for ‘Circle of Life‘ festival in Pebble, Bangalore.
Rydhm Dee is in an exclusive conversation with GrooveNexus. Let’s get chatty with him!
Q. You have an interesting name, Rydhm Dee, with an even more interesting spelling. What’s the story behind?
A. Happy to know it sounds interesting. When I created this profile in Facebook, it wasn’t really meant for my DJ/Screen name but a pseudo profile where I wanted to connect with all the music followers across the world. Due to FB restrictions on naming convention, it became “RYDHM DEE”. When people started connecting with me with this name, I decided to change my YouTube Channel name to this, and all started from there!
Q. Who is your biggest inspiration in the Psytrance genre? Whose music do you follow outside of your genre?
A. There are many, but to name a few, Liquid Soul, Sonic Species, Astrix, Tristan, Vertical Mode, Spinal Fusion, DJ Antrix, Middle Mode, etc.
Outside of my genre, I listen to a lot of Techno and Progressive House. Artists who I like in this space are, Boris Brejcha, Oliver Hunteman, Stan Kolev, Dubfire, Betoko, Elkin Klein, Guy J, Pryda, etc.
Q. What is the one track that never gets old for you no matter how many times you hear it?
A. That’s a difficult question! As a DJ, I constantly have to look for new music. However, if I were to pick one track, which I love the most, originally, it would be Liquid Soul and Zyce by Anjuna (Progressive Psy).
Q. Most DJs are known for their unique styles. What is it about you that makes you different from other DJs?
A. My followers should answer this. I take my mixing very seriously. Sometimes, I take four months to make just one mix. Lots of listening, filtering, sorting, and sequencing go into all my mixes. I record again if I don’t like only one transition. E.g., I took me approximately 36 attempts to record my first mix. I always focus on the opening, journey
Q. If you had to switch your style to another genre, what would it be and why?
A. Music is like an ocean. It takes years to master one genre. So currently, I am not thinking of anything other than Psytrance. However, as I mentioned above, I do listen to many genres. Given an opportunity, I may venture into Techno.
Q. Talking of the digitization today, platforms like YouTube and Soundcloud are doing a lot to uplift the careers of artists. Tell us about your journey through it.
A. I give all the credit to YouTube. There’s no other platform to match YouTube with respect to visibility that it offers to artists. SoundCloud is good but 1/10th of YouTube. There’s no shortcut to being popular in the online space. If you are good then it all depends on your listeners; they make you big, period!
Q. What kind of equipment do you work with? What are the DAWs you use and swear by? Do you also use organic sounds for your tracks?
A. To be honest I am not an equipment guy. My primary focus is good music. I started with Virtual DJ software, then I upgraded to Traktor Pro and S4 hardware for my mixes. I am not a producer yet. That’s at least a few years away.
Q. Looking at the length of each track that you’ve made, we are intrigued so as to how much time does it take for production of one track?
A. If you are asking about my mixes, each of my mixes contains at least 18 tracks. I don’t believe in the 60-minute capsules. I take anywhere between 2-3 months for each mix of 1.5 to 2 hours.
Q. Knowing that you’re a working professional other than being a fabulous DJ, how do you maintain a work-life-passion balance?
A. That’s the most difficult part. I have my full-time job in the IT industry. The good part about it is there’s no clash between my passion (music) and my work. I pursue my passion during my free time and hence sometimes can’t meet the demand of my followers. The positive side is: Music helps me stay focused at work. It’s always a good reboot option that I constantly depend on.
Q. When not producing music, how do you like spending your time?
A. I like to travel a lot as well as spending time with family. Whatever suits the time frame actually! Nature walks and photography also appeal to me.
Q. 2019 is just around the corner, what are your big plans for 2019?
A. By the looks of it, 2019 has some great news for me. All work in progress at the moment! Started the year with my live set at a New Year eve party at Chikkamaglur. There are some international opportunities as well on the cards which I will reveal in a few weeks.
Q. One big-end music festival is inviting Rydhm Dee to set the stage on fire. Which one would it be?
A. Without a doubt, it has to be the Boom festival, but that’s a long way.
Q. 10 years down the line where do you see Rydhm Dee?
A. I have never planned anything so far and I never will in the future. I would like to flow with the wind, wherever it takes me!
Q. Any thoughts that you’d like to pass on to the next generation of aspiring musicians/DJs?
A. I don’t think I have made it big enough to advise anyone, but many ask me the success behind my YouTube channel so I would like to say this: Stick to the basics and focus on good music, technical skills will follow. No one other than your listeners is the best judge of your work. Don’t try to push your music on others; people will come searching for you if you are good at what you do.
Q. Any message for your fans?
A. Thank you for all the love and support!
Q. How does it feel to be associated with GrooveNexus?
A. It’s amazing to be associated with GrooveNexus. Everything and everyone is so musically professional here and that makes me believe it’s just the start of something really big in the music industry. Looking forward to it!
Rydhm Dee posts his first mix of the year around the first week of February. Look out for his tunes on his channel.