Internationally, women DJs are now some of the most sought after at events, festivals and clubs, and have created quite the buzz amongst their peers, and fans alike. I’m not talking about the topless, model kind that pretend they’re familiar with working CDJs or any kind of technical equipment, nor am I referring to socialite turned ‘DJ’ Paris Hilton. I speak of artists such as Miss Kitten, Ida Engberg, Nina Kraviz, et al, who have worked hard and proven that they are just as talented, if not more, than their male counterparts, thereby breaking the myth that women shouldn’t be behind the console.



She is one of our personal favourite DJs, and one could call her the pioneer of the dance music scene in India. Pushing for women to hold their own and come into the limelight, she did a series of events known as ‘Steel’, which brought together some of the country’s most talented women DJs in a show of solidarity to eradicate the objectification of women, permanently. Her hard work, her energy, and her strong yet gentle demeanour are just the tip of the iceberg. She has also captured the hearts of many internationally, when she played at the coveted Global Gathering in 2014. We could go on about Pearl, and her accolades and what she’s accomplished for the dance music scene in India, but words won’t be able to do her justice. She has been an inspiration to women to follow their dreams, and believing that anything is possible.

Ma Faiza


She’s one of the original Mistresses of Electronic Dance Music in India, and this British born DJ has wowed the crowds with her blend of eclectic dance music, which has spread across several genres. She has championed the LGBT cause in the country and has held ‘Queer’ parties to celebrate and embrace the community, and has no qualms about speaking about her own lifestyle. She’s fierce, she knows how to work a crowd, and moreover, she has a connection with the crowd that showcases her love and passion for dance music. Don’t let that outer persona fool you, Ma Faiza is one of the kindest people you’ll ever come across.

Kini Rao


House and Techno DJ and producer Kini is another one of India’s early dance music pioneers. The Hyderabad native, who now lives in Bombay, was always musically inclined, after having studied piano theory and immersing herself in musical culture. In 2007, she discovered her talent for DJing thanks to her housemate in Australia, and the rest they say, is history. Recording mixes, and understanding the technical aspect of production landed her releases on MakTub, and Twisted Frequency Recordings, to name a few, and she launched District Fifty Records with a bunch of like-minded folk in April 2013; it celebrates dance music in all its genres/sub-genres/micro genres. The label will see a fair few releases in the course of 2015, including some of Kini’s own productions. One look at this lady and you’ll know that once she’s behind the decks, she’ll give you a power packed set and immerse you in a sea of musical goodness.

Vandana Bhalla {Bassister}


This Pune girl has music etched into her blood. An advocate of the Indian music culture, she is a bass player and a singer and has embodied all forms of music, be it jazz, rock, funk or indie. However, upon discovering dance music, she knew that this was her calling. Once she became comfortable behind the decks, her musical journey knew no bounds. From tribal, to bass-heavy music, Vandana didn’t pigeonhole herself to one specific genre. For her, continuously evolving and understanding different styles of dance music is a key factor in making her sets stand out. From spinning main room sets to playing along side Pearl, Atmos, Paul Thomas, among a host of other artists, Vandana is dabbling in production and hopes to put out her own originals soon enough. Even though she loves techno, her aim is to understand and incorporate micro-genres of dance music.



Once this lady takes to the decks, you can’t help but feel happy. Her infectious smile, coupled with her ability to gauge the crowd and build her set around the vibe she gets is a rarity, and makes her one of the top DJs in the country. Right from the early days in her career, Priyanjana established residencies at some of the coolest clubs in the country, which led her to really hone her skills and perfect her craft. She’s even opened for the likes of Sharam {one half of Deep Dish}, Guy J, Fur Coat and most recently, Macromism. Priyanjana also represented India at the prestigious Amsterdam Dance Even {ADE} as part of the sLick! and Audiophile showcases. This year, she’s landed residency at the newly opened Kitty Su and weekend after weekend delivers groovy unique and foot-stomping sets.

Neha Pardeshi {Nephra}


This Hyderabad native has been one of the instrumental forces in propagating and educating the people of Hyderabad about dance music. Right from an early age, she’s been involved in the scene in one way or another and once she decided to take to the decks, it was as if she was made to be a DJ. Constantly evolving, constantly experimenting, Nephra’s sets are carefully put together, showcasing her love of deep house, techno and tech-house. She’s already created quite the buzz on the airwaves, being crowned Frisky Radio’s artist of the week, as well as having being part of the X-Chrome show – which showcases female underground talent. She, along with her friends and fellow DJs, hosts the Sunday Playground in Hyderabad, a perfect way to unwind after a heavy weekend. There’s no stopping this talented young woman, and we can honestly say, she’s definitely a favourite.

Harshita Kalee/Kaleekarma 


She might be a relatively new artist on the block, but this young lady showcases a wide range of sounds that are embodied with an organic touch, thereby weaving a story through her sets. Starting off in the Fashion Industry, Harshita started delving deeper into underground music, and began developing her skills as a DJ. She derives influences from Indian and tribal sounds, which she encapsulates into her music, and it is this sound that has put her on Regenerate’s roster. She has already played internationally – at Big Willy’s in Mauritius to a crowd of 900 people, where she received high praises. On home turf, she was part of the Regenerate by the Pier 2.0 open-air event in February and she set the tone for the entire event. Dabbling in minimal, techno and even down tempo, Harshita incorporates a variety of sounds into her sets and she’s fast becoming an artist that has many singing her praises.

Ayesha Pramanik


This Goa resident is one of those DJs who can make you lose yourself on the dance floor. Her love of music is showcased in her sets as well as in her productions and remixes. Embodying a variety of styles, Ayesha delivers each set with aplomb and wows with her ability to really get the crowd grooving. Having releases on the likes of Baroque Records, Groove 9, Dash Deep, Midi Mood, to name a few, Ayesha has delivered each of her releases with a heightened level of technical prowess. She continues to evolve and experiment with her music, hoping to push the boundaries in Intelligent Dance Music.

Pooja Bangad/Pooja B


This Pune girl, who currently has her home in Dubai, is literally a globe trotter. An air hostess on Emirates by day, and DJ by night, Pooja has played at some of the UAE’s hottest clubs as well as opened for some of the biggest names in Techno. Her monthly show, ‘Come Dance With Me’ showcases her love of all things Techno, Tech-House and Deep House. In Dubai, she’s been part of the longest running techno night ‘WARPED’, played at the Go:Madras festival, and in 2015, she played at Techno Cracks at Generator, Barcelona, as part of the Off Sonar series of parties. Her energy, and her deep-rooted love of techno comes forth in all her sets, and no two mixes sound the same. She’s been dabbling in the production side of things, and hopes to fine-tune her technical skills in order to produce the sound she loves – Techno.

Courtesy: Little Black Book, Delhi



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