Vidya Vox is a singer and YouTube personality of Indian origin. She has a staggering 2.8 million subscribers to her YouTube channel. Dubbed as the 'Mashup Queen' in YouTube, Vidya Iyer, popularly known as Vidya Vox, is the latest sensation in the music community. A US bred Tamil Brahmin, Vidya has a natural affinity for everything musical and has taken popular music from both sides of the globe and clubbed them together to create melodious magic. She has complimented her unusual success with her strikingly beautiful appearance.
She is a classically trained singer with her foot firmly planted in her roots. She has gone on from creating successful mashups to belting out originals and dancing up a storm in the music videos. She has been on tour multiple times with her band of equally gifted musicians and has earned the adoration of fans all over. On all the social media platforms that she has a presence in, Vidya has immense fan following. Through her YouTube channel, national, and international concerts, she has amassed quite the sizable net worth that might incite a tinge of jealousy.
Childhood & Early Life
Vidya was born to Tamil Brahmin parents in Chennai. A few years after her birth, Vidya’s family moved to the US and she was brought up in Virginia. Starting at the tender age of five, she spent her childhood in learning Carnatic Classical music. At that age she was keen on western pop music and has confessed that she hated going for Indian music classes. Yet, she continued her music lessons under some renowned names like D.K. Nagarajan, brother of late D.K. Pattamal, while holding on to the latest fads in western music.
Like the quintessential Tamil Brahmin Girl, Vidya went on to pursue higher studies and enrolled into Geoge Washington University at Washington D.C. to pursue a degree in Psychology. During her college years she thought of taking her musical aspiration to the next level by creating her YouTube channel and exhibiting to the world her musical talent. She collaborated with her sister, Vandana, to reproduce popular A.R. Rehman songs like 'Ashai Mugam,' 'Nee Nenaindal,' and 'Munbe Vaa.'
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How Fame Found Vidya
Vidya’s YouTube channel brought her into the radar of composer, arranger, and producer Shankar Tucker. He approached Vidya to be part of his band and Vidya agreed. Together, they performed various numbers in Shankar’s YouTube channel 'ShritiBox.'
Vidya’s keenness to create a bridge between East and West through music encouraged her to create her first mashup while she was still in college. She delayed the release of her music video till 2015 to perfect it and also shoot an enticing music video for which she took the help of Shankar Tucker. After she released her first video on her YouTube channel, ‘Vidya Vox’ (Vox is the Latin word for Voice), her graph has been north-bound. It was a mash up cover between 'Big Girls Cry' by Sia and the Arijit Singh number ‘Kabhi Jo Badal Barse’. Both the songs were one of the most heard numbers in global and Indian markets, and the mash up was very well blended.
Since then, Vidya’s channel has featured immensely popular mash up numbers that have been hugely appreciated by the viewers. The mashups are conceptualized by both Vidya and Shankar, the latter being the producer of the track.
Apart from mainstream Bollywood songs, Vidya has taken up Tamil, Malaylam and even folk songs to create mashups with appropriate international chartbusters. Song like 'Mental Manadhil' from the film 'OK Kanmani,' an A.R. Rahman creation, was merged flawlessly with Taylor Swift’s chartbuster 'Blank Space' by the duo.
Vidya also created a popular mashup with ‘Hasi Ban Gaye’ from the Emran Hashmi and Vidya Balan starrer ‘Hamari Adhuri Kahani’ with an original ‘Come Alive’ in August 2015.
She often combines unusual tunes together - she combined the essentially folksy Kerala Boat Song ‘Kuttanadan Punchayile’ in a new remixed avatar.
Finally in 2017, Vidya released her first original EP single ‘Kuthu Fire.'
Vidya’s YouTube channel currently has over 4.1 million subscribers with millions of views. Most of her mashups have over 10 million views and the most popular one in her channel is the one where she combined the Chainsmoker song ‘Closer’ with Kabira from the film ‘Yeh Jawani Hain Diwani’ with around 44 million views.
During 2016-2017, Vidya went on a tour of various cities in India for the 'YouTube Fan Fest' and 'Radio Mirchi Live' with the band featuring Shankar Tucker and Jomy George. She performed in all the major cities of India and her lively, energetic stage presence wowed the Indian audience to no end.
The most important thing driving Vidya’s success is the creativity behind the fusions and the selection of songs. Vidya had said in an interview that she creates the combinations after an hour's sitting with Shankar. Adding to that is her melodious voice that is able to carry out western tunes with equal grace as Indian ones. Her versatility is also one of her strong suites. She can effortlessly pass through genres and languages, making it seem strikingly easy.
Her singing prowess is also evident from her original songs, which are steadily climbing up the charts. She has also used her quirky sense of fashion to create an enticing persona. She almost always includes an ethnic Indian element in her ensemble which is essentially western in nature.