"I became the fastest rising artist in the country with achievements and stats beyond any other regional artist at the label".
Originally hailing from the United Arab Emirates, Jai Nova has quickly become one of the most sought-after names in electronic dance music. Having collaborated with the likes of Red Bull & MTV, his ability to take the world by storm is certainly profound.
But in a recent bid to understand the young prodigy, we sat down with Jai to discuss his work ethic, vision for the future, and how people can tactically go about quitting their day jobs to persue a passion.
Read the interview below.
What's your vision for the future of Jai Nova?
The end goal for Jai Nova is to have a sustainable lifestyle through the music and brand across many sectors of entertainment and business. By this, I mean getting creative as possible. This could mean having a clothing line, writing music for tv and movies, or even collaborating with brands outside of entertainment. Most artist goals are playing the most prominent festivals, or signing tracks to the most famous labels which are excellent, but I've personally learnt and see those as stepping stones/milestones towards a higher goal. Of course, I'd love to headline Tomorrowland or play at Coachella as they would be an incredible opportunity! But for me, they are just a part of something bigger.
People often underestimate the amount of talent, hard work, and persistence needed to become successful in the music industry. How has your work ethic contributed to your overall success as a producer?
I think my work ethic has been a massive factor in my success and achievements today. Without it, I wouldn't be at this stage. Once I've set my mind on something, I am extremely driven to achieve it, no matter how long it takes.
During the beginning of my career when I was 16, I told myself I will sign to one of the 3 biggest major music labels in the world by the time I'm 21. So I focused on developing my work ethic and told myself it would happen when the time is right. My priorities changed, and I worked 6-7 hrs a day on developing my music and my brand. I missed out on a lot of fun events and parties, but I knew what had to be done and so I stayed persistent.
I was offered a deal just before I turned 18 by one of the majors. I turned it down. Not because I didn't want it, but because I knew I wasn't ready. My work ethic was great, my music was great, but I knew I could make a much more significant impact if I pushed harder.
A year went by, and the time was right, so I knew what I was capable of. I signed the deal then, and by the end of the year, I became the fastest rising artist in the country with achievements and stats beyond any other regional artist at the label. Today, I work 12-13 hours a day without fail. Keeping a balance is key to staying consistent and not over-burning, and so on the weekends, I lower this to about 4-6 hours a day.
At what point do you believe is a good idea for people to drop their day-job to work on their music full-time?
I think it comes down to prioritizing and limiting your expenses first. No, you don't need to go out every weekend. No, you do need a new car. No, you don't need those Gucci flip-flops. Once you have an estimate of your expenses, you must understand that you have to also invest in yourself and your music financially. If you have got that sorted, then it comes down to predicting how long you can sustain yourself if you went full-time in music. It's a unique situation for everyone, but It all comes down to prioritizing. If you have to live with your parents for the next 5 years then do it, you can save that rent money. Every little makes a difference. An alternative route is to get digging and make money online. For example, freelancing. Then you can work in your own time and have more than enough time to work on your music.
If you could travel back in time to the moment you discovered you first wanted to make music, what would you tell your younger self?
It's going to be a crazy rollercoaster with lots of ups and downs. Don't feel bad that you are missing out on normal things because you will get to experience opportunities that only a small amount of people receive. Cherish and enjoy those moments. There will be days where you are tired, exhausted and want to quit. Take a step back, rest and remember why you started in the first place. Come back stronger the next day. Never stop working hard. Be smart about your decisions and plan ahead but also be patient. Make time to learn about yourself and understand you and your body so you can work more efficiently. Create a balance where you are happy.
Final question. What does a successful life mean to you?
Coming from an Asian background, successful life generally revolves around your financial wealth. A successful life to me is happy, doing what you love and being surrounded by family and friends. You can't put a price tag on that.