“People don’t take me seriously – but once they listen to my music, they forget about everything else.”
Early one morning, while bird watching with his father, 16-year-old Shaan Chhadva decided that his ‘musician name’ was SCayos. This clarity of thought and unadulterated talent evidently reflected in his music studies at The Interlochen Centre for the Arts, where a major in Contemporary Piano was added just for him. His first single Novocaine [feat Shiloh] has garnered rave reviews, and his music is available to listen to on Apple Music, Spotify and more.
Shy and quiet at first, this child prodigy became more chatty when we started talking about his music production, his dog and his next EP – a remix of Mr. Sandman by the Chordettes – with a friend on the guitar. When asked about his age, Shaan definitely thinks it’s a minus. “People don’t take me seriously – but once they listen to my music they forget about everything else. Now at 16, I think the negative aspect about my age is starting to go away.”
Shaan started taking music extremely seriously when he was 13, and started music production when he was 12. One of the most important things for him to be good at music production was to learn the piano – so that’s what he started doing at 14. Speaking about being an Indian musician abroad, he says he has used ‘exotic’ instruments before, but it’s really hard to come by a usable sound. “It’s a good thing that I’m Indian though because I know different sounds and I have cultural aspects to my music at all times, whether I want it or not – that’s always a good thing and influences my music in a positive way.”
Shaan describes the intent of his EP ‘Feelings’ being to provide warmth and comfort to anyone listening. He describes how it all started with a song called ‘Lullaby’ for a project he did last year. “When my dog was sick, he came to Mumbai to get treated, and when I started playing that song – he felt really relaxed and came and slept next to me, which inspired me to make that album.”
His lucky item is a box from his childhood that he had made in Thailand when he was 8 years old. “I never really had a function for it. But then when I started going to concerts, I started keeping the tickets and other stuff that’s stuck to me in life. So it’s a box of collected memories, that reminds me of good times. It’s evidence of my growth in music.”
Watch Shaan Chhadva LIVE at PORT
Words by Shaista Vaishnav