Dhruv Agarwala would love to work with A.R. Rahman

     Dhruv is a 22-year-old musician from India. Although born into a family of non-musicians, Dhruv had a keen interest in music and pursued a career in sound engineering and mixing from acclaimed institutes abroad. Combining business and passion together, Dhruv has emerged to be a rising star in the world of music, at a very young age.


Dhruv has worked at some of the biggest studios in the world, including the Village Recorder, EastWest, Fonogenic Studios. He will soon release new projects with famous artists such as Cody Simpson, 4AM, Elysse, amongst others.


Here he talks about his passion for music, dreams & a promising career in sound engineering and mixing.


  1. 1.     How did you get into sound engineering?


A: I started off as a drummer. That was the reason for my scholarship and my intention for studies at Berklee. However, as I was learning more about different aspects of music, I realized that I could contribute to more diverse music as a recording and mixing engineer.  That gave me a lot of joy and that’s how my interest developed. 


  1. 2.     What makes a good sound engineer?


A:  In my opinion, very similar attributes to what make a good musician. A good set of ears, musicality, and understanding the artists vision. It's important to understand the technical aspects of production and be quick on your feet as well. Engineering is a key part of the bridge between the artist and the producer. It's only after mixing that a song can be considered 'radio-ready', fully highlighting the creativity and production of the project.


  1. What are the projects you are working on currently?


A: The main project I'm currently working on is with pop star Cody Simpson on new music for his band named Cody Simpson & the Tide. We’re working on materials for their upcoming singles and next album. I’m also working with acid-jazz artist Maddie Jay, singer-songwriter Emma Taylor, current American Idol contestant Will Casanova, drummer and producer Adrian Cota. They will be releasing EP’s, singles and full-length albums on which I have collaborated.




  1. Do you have any ambitions for India and who are your favorite musicians here? 


A: I would love to be able to work in India someday. I had the chance to meet A.R. Rahman when he was given the honorary doctorate at Berklee. Speaking with him really showed me what a musical genius he is, and I would love to work with him in the future. 


  1. What is the scope of sound engineering in India?


A: I think it is very positive. However, it is still uncharted territory for most. I wouldn't be surprised if this is a more prominent career in the future.  There are stunning mixes being done in India. From Bollywood to Classical music, the quality of sound is incredible. One person who is doing incredible work is Resul Pookutty, who won an Oscar for Best Sound Mixing for Slumdog Millionaire. I really admire and look up to his work. 


Dhruv Agarwala’s milestones: -


  • He has received the Asia Tour Scholarship from Berklee College of Music. Berklee College of Music, located in Boston, Massachusetts, United States, is one of the most prestigious music colleges in the world. Its alumni include Quincy Jones, Aerosmith, John Mayer, Charlie Puth and hundreds of other top caliber musicians.


  • With a specialized training in sound engineering and mixing, he is taught by some of the leading musicians in the world such as Prince Charles Alexander (3 Time Grammy Winner), Ted Paduck (Aerosmith, Duran Duran)


  • He was the youngest competitor to win the Melody House Drum Off in Dubai, at age 17.


  • He was the youngest member of the UAE National Symphony Orchestra, which has more than 100 musicians of about 20 nationalities and are professional musicians and musical educators who perform regularly for their own national orchestras. Dhruv performed with them on multiple occasions while still in high school.


  • He was invited to speak and perform at TedX in Dubai


  • He worked in New York at Electric Lady Studios (Jimi Hendrix’s Studio) and Studio G Brooklyn (Home to Grammy Nominated Producer Joel Hamilton)




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