Sources: Forbes – Don Groves | All Things Michael
US-born, Mumbai-based YouTube star Aakash Gandhi today unveiled his new video, a mash-up of Michael Jackson’s Billie Jean and A.R. Rahman’s Jiya Re, at YouTube Space Mumbai.
Launched also on his YouTube channel 88KeysToEuphoria, the video, Billie Jean | Jiya Re (Mashup Cover), was the first filmed at the facility, which opened the same afternoon in the film and television production hub Filmcity.
YouTube Space Mumbai at Whistling Woods International (WWI) is a collaboration with the renowned film school and is designed to teach YT creators and WWI students how to create videos, collaborate with other creators and give them the tools to realize their creative goals.
The facility will further accelerate the growth in online production in India. In the past year the amount of content uploaded to YouTube in India has grown by 90%, while watch-time has risen by 80% year on year, according to Google .
“Michael Jackson is one of those artists where it’s almost impossible not to be inspired by his musical legacy,” says Gandhi, whose channel has 138,000 subscribers and has clocked more than 40 million views. “Raised in the U.S., yet surrounded by the rich culture of Indian music, I wanted to intertwine both aspects of my musical upbringing while showcasing how seamless and borderless music really is. My crossover mash-up is my homage to two ground-breaking artists and the musical diversity they represent.”
At the opening Ghandi, Ash King and Shashaa Tirupati performed the song, which features Gandhi on piano and keyboard, Bollywood playback singer King and Tirupati on vocals, Chandresh Kudwa on guitar, Rax Timyr on beatboxing and Rupak Dhamankar on the cajon and tabla.
“We were fortunate to be the first ones to shoot at YouTube Space Mumbai and it was a surreal experience, ” says Gandhi. “ India is booming in so many ways, with an explosion in digital media leading the charge. The new YouTube Space will open the door for so many upcoming YouTubers by providing them with guidance and production support that was previously unavailable in such an accessible way.”
In 2014 he collaborated with Sony Music India to create an Indian make-over of the Michael Jackson-Justin Timberlake song “Love Never Felt So Good” to coincide with the Indian release of Jackson’s posthumous album, Xscape.
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