Turning the Tables

Rishav Chhabra talks with You & I
Tell us about yourself.
I was born in New Delhi and raised in Bengaluru, where I completed my education. From what my friends tell me, when I’m part of any crowd, I have a positive vibe that spreads its aura and builds positive energy. I think
I’m a very happy-go-lucky person by nature.
I landed in Hyderabad after I got a job at Deloitte through campus recruitment. I didn’t want to leave Bengaluru as I was comfortable there. But my dad pushed me to come here in order for me to become independent, and it has honestly been the best decision I’ve ever taken. I currently work for the audits department at Deloitte, for our Australian client base.
So how, then, did you enter the world of DJing?
I’d been a bedroom DJ for years, playing on digital software for house parties. When I shifted to Hyderabad, it was a major change. I bought my first DJ controller in 2013, which I practiced on regularly. In September 2014 I played my first gig at the Taj Banjara. Since then, I have grown into this lifestyle while learning so
much about music. And yet I feel there’s still so much to discover.
What’s the average day like in the life of a DJ?
On a regular day, I go to work in the morning for a complete shift. I try to give a few hours to music before I hit the gym, and my day ends with a game of FIFA with my friends. I honestly have nothing to complain about. Life at the moment is great, and I have a long way to go.
Rishav Chhabra DJ 
How has your passion for music shaped you?
It’s given me this feeling that I can hold onto my passion, as well as the desire to never let go. I have confidence in my ability to pursue this dream. I say this because usually, when I get bored of something, I tend to give it up. But music has given me motivation to carry it forward in life. In the near future, I even hope to launch my own album.
Who or what inspires you?
My inspiration is Anish Sood, an Indian artist. The story behind why he’s my idol starts when I heard him at a concert. He was opening for a world-renowned artist; I was hearing him play for the first time. I adored his work, which has since influenced my perspective on music. I also draw inspiration from the energy and music of Swedish House Mafia. Of course, the list would be incomplete without mentioning Pranay Ryan, my mentor.
Any plans for the future?
I never plan too far ahead, and instead maintain small goals and try to achieve those. I just want to take it one step at a time. The next target is to release my own track.
Tell us about one of your big achievements.
I have a couple of memories that stay with me. The first would be opening for Anish Sood at Olive Bistro here in Hyderabad, which is something I’d never have imagined five or six years ago. Another would be playing at Sky, which holds a special place close to my heart. I used to party there every week before I turned semi-professional. The third is that I have played alongside artists such as Ankytrixx, Rohan Kapoor and Sai Dutta as well.
Where can our readers hear you play?
I’ve been fortunate to have played at great places in Hyderabad, and Olive Bistro and Sky stand out. All this wouldn’t be possible without my best friend and partner at Funky Town, Prateek Nair (99634 66344), who handles my shows and finances. He also markets my brand, and I’m very grateful to have him.
I’m quite selective about the venues I choose to play at, but you can see me taking charge of deck duties at Olive Bistro, Air Lounge and Avasa fairly often. I’m planning out a schedule for a few more places this month, but that’s not out just yet. I'll be opening for an Anjunabeats artist on August 21 at Olive. That's something I'm really looking forward to.                 ..... as told to Shreya