25 AUGUST 2023 (TORONTO,ON) – Renowned Bollywood vocalist Sid Sriram releases his highly anticipated Def Jam Recordings debut album, Sidharth. In tandem with the release, Sid shares a video for album highlight “Do The Dance,” which finds him performing the track alongside a children’s choir that his mother instructs. The video marks a full circle moment for Sid given that his own vocal prowess was nurtured by his mother as a child. The resulting heartwarming performance showcases a musical bond that spans generations. The album includes previously released singles “The Hard Way” and “Friendly Fire,” with the former praised by The New York Times upon its release in the Playlist and called a “a clattering, experimental pop song” that is a must-listen for fans of James Blake, Bon Iver and more by BrooklynVegan.
Speaking on the album, Sid explains: “For the first time, I was able to make music where all these different elements that feel like part of my DNA breathed through the songs. I didn’t have to try and think about how to express these things. It started to come out on its own.”
The album’s creation process was unlike any other he had undertaken before, with a significant difference being that the vocals are delivered in English. In the summer of 2021, he took a leap of faith and hopped on a plane to Minneapolis to work with producer Ryan Olson (Poliça, Gayngs, Bon Iver), whom he had previously only met on Instagram. Sidharth draws on the R&B, indie rock, and American pop styles he grew up with as an immigrant kid in Fremont, CA, in the ’90s and 2000s. During an intense week in the studio, most of the songs were tracked live by a small team of Olson’s associates, including Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon, a longtime inspiration for Sid. Fittingly, Sid just finished opening for Bon Iver on tour this month after his recent sold out headline show at The Roxy Theatre in Los Angeles.
All this may seem like a far cry from the music that has made Sid famous with Bollywood fans worldwide since breaking out with his first hit soundtrack song, “Adiye” (from 2013’s Kadal), just a year out of music school. Indeed, many of the million-plus-viewed videos of Sid feature him singing ragas backed by traditional instruments, not freestyling personal narratives over glitchy 808s and Auto-Tune beds. But before his sudden success, Sriram was an American 20-something obsessed with pop and R&B; he found early viral success by posting a Frank Ocean cover (“We All Try”) to YouTube. He also recently endeared himself to a new audience this past May when he delivered a mesmerizing Tiny Desk Concert for NPR. Backed by an 8-piece band, the performance received immediate acclaim, further solidifying his talent and artistry. In many ways, Sidharth highlights the ways in which the musical personalities of that younger version of Sid and the Carnatic music star Sid relate to and complement one another.
Listen to Sidharth above now and stay tuned for more Sid Sriram news soon.
Universal Music Canada