Indian Internet’s first musical find, Ritviz on being a ‘bedroom singer’
In 2017 when A.I.B. launched the official music video of Udd Gaye featuring a 19-year old boy from Pune, it broke the internet. The artist, Ritviz Srivastava, became India’s first internet-born musician. Today, the Udd Gaye video boasts of 63 million views and Ritviz has released around 20 songs since then.
Taking off after winning the 2017 Bacardi House Party Sessions, Ritviz has evolved to be featured in Forbes 30 Under 30 list last year, and on Grazia’s ‘Cool List 2021.’ His song Sun Toh featured on Netflix India’s series Mismatched.
On the second day of the first edition of YourStory’s Creators Inc. Conference 2021, Ritviz shares the details of the creative process of producing a song, life lessons and what’s in store for the 25-year old musician.
The pandemic disrupted the way artists have traditionally performed, so as they mostly stayed confined to their homes they took to their screens to interact and perform for their fans. While this may have been a bummer for the fans who looked forward to the adrenaline rush one experiences of watching their favorite artists perform right in front of their eyes, Ritviz saw this as a “boon”.
“Right before the pandemic kicked in, I was doing three shows a week and travelling for the same. I had hit the saturation point and was burnt out…During the lockdown I got time to sit back and reflect,” says Ritviz.
Despite business taking a huge hit, “the last one year has worked well for my mental health,” the artist says. Ritviz has never been a big fan of travelling, and being a ‘bedroom singer’ since childhood, being stuck inside the house was more like a ‘privilege’ for the artist.
The result? Ritviz’s latest releases Baaraat and Thandi Hawa are pandemic productions.
Music as an outlet
For Ritviz, music is an expression– his reaction to what goes on in his life at that particular point of time. “To create music, I need to go through something. Music is just a translation of what is going on inside me,” he says.
After almost a decade of producing and being associated with music, Ritviz divides his career into two parts: pre and post Udd Gaye.
“My pre-Udd Gaye songs were just my imagination and strong desires converted into songs. Post-Udd Gaye I started building my personal life as well and the writing process changed,” Ritviz explains.
Now, Ritviz lives experiences and writes them into songs, rather than putting his imagination into words. “Now that I have the time and can afford to have experiences, that is how my music is going to be,” he adds. According to the artist, Sage was his first song that he had written purely based on experiences. “Today when I look back and listen to my songs, I can recall what I was going through at that particular moment,” he adds.
Ritviz’s roots go back to Indian classical music with his parents being closely associated with it, and growing up, Ritviz’s exposure to western hip-hop music, led to the amalgamation of both that led him to produce the kind of music he does today.
“I do not look at myself as a musician but as a creative individual. It helps me widen my horizon. I do not see myself making music all my life. Just how making music is like a form of expression for me, I can express in 10 different ways,” says Ritviz.
For two-years now, the artist is working on producing a fashion line to tell his stories through clothes.
The Udd Gaye singer ends the session on a thoughtful note and advises creators looking up to him for inspiration to focus on their mental health just as much as they do on their career to handle fame well, and avoid burning out.
For more on other key initiatives as part of the conference, visit our Creators Inc. website here.
Recognising the burgeoning creator ecosystem and the new wave of entrepreneurship that comes with it, YourStory is celebrating the works of both established and emerging influencers in an initiative aimed at identifying, celebrating and accelerating the journey of digital creators who make extraordinary, unique and engaging content. We've partnered with Trell to bring you the Top 100 Creators challenge, which you can apply for here.