“Allow Itihaas Studio to enter the meeting”. In an instant, the video connected to two smiling faces sitting in front of a bright purple neon sign glowing with the name “Itihaas Studio”. Just like that Shreyas and Vedang agreed to share their journey as artists and talk about their newest mixtape- “Stop Bullshittin The Fans Vol.1” written and performed by Shreyas and produced by Vedang. Shreyas and Vedang decided to stick with their real names instead of any fancy stage names. “We want people to know us by our names because we have our true identity connected to it, and also because I am really bad at choosing names and I did not want to choose something I would laugh at when I’m forty”, chuckles Shreyas.
For Shreyas music has always been a big part of his life, growing up he wrote poetry and played the harmonium. He proudly represents Bombay, Ratnagiri, and Pune through his music. On the other hand, Vedang learned about the fascinating world of music production and found solace by making beat drops and playing around with classic Hip-Hop. What brings them together is their passion to represent the “Marathi middle class” through Hip-Hop. “Middle-class families, especially Marathi Middle-class families are not represented in music, people always talk about the extreme ends- the rich or the poor,” says Vedang.
What makes the duo different is their out-of-the-box take on music and the dynamic they share. They are most comfortable with working with each other, yet they both push each other to step out of their comfort zone. “Vedang has been very fundamental in my Hip-Hop journey,” says Shreyas while dabbing up Vedang. It is this extraordinary dynamic that became the driving force behind their newest mixtape, ‘Stop Bullshittin The Fans Vol.1”.
Unlike an EP/Album, their mixtape does not send out a typical message or a story. In fact, they confess they did not even think the whole process through. The mixtape is a compilation of two artist friends coming together, randomly freestyling on a blend of Western and Marathi beats, simply keeping the freestyle cypher rolling and having a great time. According to Shreyas, this mixtape is like a post-dinner walk- there is no specific purpose to it but it somehow relaxes the body and mind. When asked about the title of their mixtape ‘Stop Bullshittin The Fans Vol.1” and why they chose it, they laughed and said, “Because there ain’t no bullshittin here, we are bringing out our authentic, unfiltered selves as artists, through our music we are holding a mirror showing our unfiltered selves with pride and confidence.” Vol.1 is an indication that this is just the beginning, they will keep making music and bring a new angle to mainstream Indian Hip-Hop.
The mixtape has 11 short tracks ranging from 1-2 minutes. Although they hold all tracks close to their heart, they picked out their favorite five. The first track is “Paristhiti”, a last-minute addition to the mixtape which soon became a fan favorite. The song incorporates the delicate details of life- the song initially talks about a happy middle-class life but then instantly transitions to the hard-hitting reality of the life of struggle but the only thing that was glued to them was their artistic identity. The second track is “Bharlela Taat”- with a universal groove to it, the sonic of the song is a sample of an old Marathi song with the addition of Trap Beats creating a new bounce to the track. On the lyrical side, the song signals that even though middle-class families have food to eat and a roof over their heads they still have problems, and the world should not be understood in the extremes of the rich and poor. The third track, “Simple Man with a God Complex” is a track made on a properly composed Anime type catchy beat and talks about a rapper’s ‘ego’- no matter how much life humbles an artist in his day-to-day life as a common man, coming back to his art instills in him a sense of accomplishment and confidence. The fourth track “Savay Ghaan”, literally translates to Bad Habits, and the beat was randomly sampled from the hit classic ‘Taaze Samose Khalo’. The track brings out the reality of good-hearted people having bad habits. The track celebrates such people who are comfortable with celebrating their losses as they would when they win. The fifth track, “Easy”, is a sample from a Bollywood song and a perfect balance between Western and Indian music. It talks about the ease with which they are operating in the Rap game and remaining unbothered because they take pride in being comfortable in their skin and approach. It is also the longest track in the mixtape
The biggest hurdle they faced was making sense of everything. Since the mixtape was a compilation of random freestyle and verses, Vedang says he had to work extra hard while producing and making the album sound cohesive and well put together. Naming the tracks was also an issue since they wanted the title of the track itself to act as a peephole to the entire track. The cover of the album is made by Adwait Mehta a.k.a MC Eddie and it is a picture of Shreyas and Vedang in their element-performing for the ‘Janta’.
They also started a music video crowdfunding campaign for the track “Paristhiti” and have already reached 60% of their target goal. Click on the link for further information! https://linktr.ee/paristithicampaign
“As an artist, we have to learn to cherish and understand the importance of the moment, believe in the process and the result will always be worth it” -Shreyas and Vedang.