DJ Nivaadh Singh has music lovers dancing to his tunes

Music producer and DJ Nivaadh Singh. Picture: Supplied

Music producer and DJ Nivaadh Singh. Picture: Supplied

Published Apr 8, 2024


Music producer, drummer and renowned local DJ, Nivaadh Singh, has got local and international music lovers dancing to his tunes.

Singh has cracked the nod from audiences with his fiery music sets on YouTube and Facebook, where he invites thousands of music lovers into his state-of-the-art studio every Friday and Saturday night for his three-hour live music stream, “FTLOF” (For The Love Of Music).

The Richards Bay-born music enthusiast came up with the idea in 2019 after his attempt at running an events company failed and he was left in a deep state of depression.

DJ Nivaadh Singh. Picture: Supplied

“Music saved my life,” Singh said during our interview.

“At the time, I said to my wife, why don’t we set up something central and let the people come to us. That’s when the live-stream idea was born. We went live for the first time on Christmas Eve in 2019, we had hundreds of viewers but I couldn’t commit to it.

“The following year when the pandemic hit and the world was on lock-down, it was easy for me to continue because I already had everything set up. It was explosive.

“For the first time the playing fields were levelled. Every DJ went live but it wasn’t about the popularity of the DJ, it was about what you (the audience) wanted to listen to,” shared Singh.

On where his interest in music started, he said: “It all started back in 2006, when I took drumming lessons. I had a very humble beginning because I started on cardboard boxes.

“I used to go for band practice and, when I got home, I didn’t have a drum set to practise on.

“As for my DJing career, my cousin gifted me a second-hand mixer which cost R40. I connected it to two DVD players. Although it sounds sad, it was very exciting at the time because all I wanted to do was experiment. Believe it or not, it was the best time of my life, I was just 20 years old.”

His channel name, “FTLOM”, and his love for music was inspired by his parents who introduced him to music at a young age.

He said they loved parties and would often take him to supper clubs where they would enjoy a meal and music.

“Any live band that’s playing in our town, we would attend. I went to my first supper club when I was 11. I remember listening to Whitney Houston's ‘It's Not Right but It's Okay’, which had just been released.

“So from then I’ve always been exposed to good music. I grew a love and passion for it and took it up a notch during my late teen years.”

DJ Nivaadh Singh. Picture: Supplied

What sets Singh apart from other DJs is that each song he chooses to play during his mix is tied to a memory and the history behind it.

“When I curate songs, I like to find out what inspired the producer, singer to make the song. I don’t just play a song on face value. I want to know what that artist felt at that moment in time, and what they were trying to say to their audience.

“I strive to give off that same energy when I am behind the decks. That has been my secret to success. I don’t play songs for the sake of it. I play it with enthusiasm.”

None of Singh’s mixes are pre-set, instead the DJ trusts his gut instinct.

“Up until the last five minutes before we go live, I don’t know what song I am going to open with. I rely on my emotions. And the listeners can feel it.”

He said his motivation for carrying on with the live-streams despite having a day job is the heart-warming stories that have come out of “FTLOM”.

“There are some people who can’t afford an internet connection but they listen through their neighbours. There are other people with sickness that cannot leave the house and this is all they have.

“This is why I am so committed to the live stream. I understand what will happen if you take that part away from them. All they are looking forward to is that entertainment, to be with their families at home.

“The show has never slowed down, even after the pandemic,” he said.

DJ Nivaadh Singh. Picture: Supplied

Aimed at people of all ages, the live streams offer the audience a much-needed time-out, but for Singh, the lead-up to the three-hour session is anything but a break.

“I get a rush from the music. In the lead-up to the sessions I have a very intense schedule. I take care of my body. I try to sneak in an hour nap… I eat very little so that when I reach the deck I am not lethargic.

“I also don’t eat spicy food on weekends and I’m very specific about the thickness and heaviness of my clothing because I utilise every bit of energy during the show.

“Once it’s over I take a shower, then have supper. I usually wait for about an hour or two for the adrenaline rush to subside before going to sleep.

As for what’s next for the DJ, he said he would love to entertain his international fans live.

“As much as I am loved and adored in my local town, I failed to break into the industry elsewhere so when all this success came through I never expected it. It feels so surreal but I am thankful to God. It’s been a wonderful journey and a dream come true,” he said.

“I am hoping to pursue international events this year. Although I’m watched in 56 countries, I haven’t had the chance to go there yet.

“I would also love to do more family-based events in South Africa and get back to producing music for artists as well as original music for myself.”

“FTLOF” streams on Facebook and YouTube on Friday and Saturday nights from 9pm.

Watch a recent episode of the live steam below: