Singer-songwriter Adietya Shukla ’22 combines witty lyrics with sunny pop
When not studying aeronautics and astronautics, Aditeya Shukla ’22 is busy making music. Her work has been featured in “The Rolling Stone India”, “The Indian Music Diary” and “The Talented Indian”. A month after being featured, Shukla was performing songs from his new EP, “Just Wait, Sunshine”, during the Stanford Daily “Off the Record” concert series. In September, he released his latest single, “Purple Heart”.
Originally from New Delhi, Shukla describes his music as a combination of “slacker pop” and “sunshine pop”. He attributes his love for music to his family, claiming that his parents always played The Beatles or Simon & Garfunkel. Music was a family affair – her parents always supported her musical endeavors, and her grandmother had a music degree. Shukla’s adventure in space began when he was only 6 years old, when he heard his older sister play the piano and wanted to emulate her.
“I’m really, really blessed that in my family music is such an important thing,” said Shukla.
After starting piano lessons, Shukla set himself what he calls a “naive goal” of “learning all possible instruments”, then adding classical guitar. Although he fell in love with the instruments themselves, he didn’t appreciate having to repeat the same songs over and over again and instead started improvising and riffing. Fortunately, her music teacher encouraged such creativity, which Shukla says motivated her love for writing music and not just playing it.
The lyrics of Shukla’s songs range from extremely spiritual to heartfelt and nuanced. His favorite song lyrics to write were from his humorous song, “Zodiacs Are Stupid.”
“Over the past year this whole idea of zodiacs has exploded, and, me being a highlight, I always thought it was so stupid,” Shukla said. “So I really, really wanted to write a song about it for the last couple of years, and eventually I got this song that says I’m really mad at something that isn’t that important.”
Listeners appreciate the lightness of Shukla’s music. Rolling Stone India praised her “cheeky takes” and Shukla’s friend and former roommate Cole Maxwell ’22 called her music “cheerful and easy to listen to” with a “sense of humor” .
Besides his clever lyrics, Shukla’s music stands out for its blend of “electro-pop music with 80s disco beats, which is quite catchy and melodic”, according to “The Indian Music Diaries”.
Shukla says his music is influenced by The Beatles, St. Motel and Boy Pablo. It aims to create fun and exciting songs that entertain both the listener and himself from start to finish.
“Every time I’ve tried to do a song, it’s like I don’t want to be bored while I’m doing the song, and I don’t want it to be boring when someone is listening to the song,” Shukla said. .
Shukla finds the joy of being both a musician and an engineering student, even though he sometimes wishes he had more time to devote to music. This is why the freelance artist found a silver liner during the tough times of the COVID-19 pandemic – Shukla took a year off during the public health crisis, which gave him more time to devote to his art. Shukla’s relatives say that his passion can be heard in his music.
Shukla’s music “reminds me of him and all the effort and love he puts into his job,” said his friend Maitri Paul ’22.
You can listen to Shukla’s music by visiting her linktr.ee, watching her performance “Off the Record” or attending her Friday concert at The Arbor. Shukla is a music columnist for The Daily.