Drum Maro Drum

By Tanushree Sen

Jithen Arun is no ordinary nine-year-old. The Class 4 student and a resident of Sahakar Nagar has been playing the drums from when he was six and is one of India’s youngest percussionists.

“Music has been a part of my life from a very early age. My mother is a trained classical singer and I’ve always been surrounded by the tunes she hums. Listening to genres of music spanning the globe and being exposed to various instruments also gave me a sort of jolt from within to try my hands on anything that is around, being it banging on the table or boxes/containers or walls — anything that helped me create a rhythm. That is how it led me to take up drums as my passion. I have always been fascinated with the thump sound made by drummers in a band and always wanted to emmulate it,” says Arun.

For the chirpy student, his biggest influences in the field have been stalwarts like Jonathan Moffet, Travis Barker and Mike Portnoy. “I love heavy metal. It makes me feel like I’m on top of the world.”

Ask him if he has ever faced difficulties in juggling school and his music, and the answer is a prompt no. “My holidays just started last week, and I can devote more time to practising. Otherwise, I would be busy with school till the evening and would only start practising after that. My parents and teachers have been very supportive. Drumming is therapeutic for me and I can play all day long.”


Despite his young age, Arun is no stranger to performing publicly. “My first busking experience was in March, this year, at Church Street. It was a mind-blowing experience, with the passing crowd stopping to watch and encouraging you to continue even after it was time to pack up. My performance was a part of India’s first clean-air street initiative. I was the youngest performer,” he says. Arun has also performed at Gilly’s Fandom and is a regular at inter-and intra-school fests.


But leave out the music and Arun is just like any other boy his age, playing video games and hanging out with his cousins, all of whom are also musically inclined. Says Arun, “You can always find me playing video games on Minecraft or Fortnite.” Oh, and he is also a fashionista, having walked the ramp for many brands.

But music is not his only passion. The multi-faceted kid finds therapy in scuba diving and wishes to be a certified scuba diver someday.

“Currently, I am keeping myself busy by working on a few popular drum covers and composing my original music. I am attempting to play all genres of music and try out complex grooves and patterns. The pandemic has impacted me positively so far. It has given me more time for myself. I have also tried my hand at cooking, and I can prepare various dishes, though making biriyani is my favourite.”

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Sagar Biswas

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