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Kshmr in 2013
Kshmr in 2013
Background information
Birth nameNiles Hollowell-Dhar
Also known as
Born (1988-10-06) October 6, 1988 (age 32)
Berkeley, California
  • Musician
  • record producer
  • disc jockey
  • songwriter
Years active2006–present
Associated acts

Niles Hollowell-Dhar (born October 6, 1988), better known by his stage name Kshmr (pronounced "Kashmir", stylized as KSHMR) is an American musician, and record producer[7] DJ of Indian descent.[8][9] He was ranked 23rd on DJ Mag's 2015 Top 100 DJs and was awarded "The Highest New Entry".[10] His place elevated to 12th in the Top 100 DJs of 2016 and kept the same spot in 2017.[11] In July 2017, he launched his own label, Dharma Worldwide.[6]

Early life[edit]

Hollowell-Dhar was born in San Diego, California.[12] His father is a Kashmiri Hindu who emigrated from India, while his mother is American.[13][14] He got his stage name from the erstwhile state (now a UT) of Jammu and Kashmir in India, from where his paternal side hails from. His singles "Jammu" and "Kashmir" also derive their names from the erstwhile states.[15] He was originally a part of the hip-hop production duo, The Cataracs with David Singer-Vine, releasing hits such as; "Like a G6" with Far East Movement, "Bass Down Low" with DEV, and Selena Gomez's second hit off her debut album "Stars Dance."[15] Hollowell-Dhar has been producing electronic music under his current alias following Singer-Vine's departure from the duo in 2014.[15]

In 2015 Hollowell-Dhar was ranked number 23 on DJ magazine's Top 100 DJs of the year,[16] and also earned himself the award for highest new entry of the year. In 2016 he performed at Coachella.[15] His position in the DJ Magazine's Top 100 DJs of 2016 increased by 11 to be placed at 12th and he also claimed an award for the Highest Live Act.[16]

Hollowell-Dhar currently uses Ableton Live 10. With the Cataracs he used Propellerhead Reason.[17]



In 2014, Hollowell-Dhar started making electro house music under the alias of KSHMR.[18] Under this name, he charted on Beatport. Hollowell-Dhar's collaborations notably include Firebeatz, R3hab, Tiësto, Bassjackers Hardwell, Carnage, Timmy Trumpet and DallasK. Hollowell-Dhar released his first single "Megalodon" on February 24, 2014 on Spinnin' Records. A KSHMR and R3hab collaboration resulted in the single "Karate" that charted in SNEP, the official French Singles Chart in March 2015.[19] Most of Hollowell-Dhar's songs are released under Spinnin' Records. Hollowell-Dhar started raising attention when his single "Burn", a collaboration with DallasK, debuted reached the Top 40 chart on Beatport then eventually reached No. 1. The song has been released through 3 labels: Revealed Recordings, Spinnin' Records, and Ultra Records.


Hollowell-Dhar finally revealed himself at Ultra Music Festival 2015 and was introduced by Tiësto himself. His song, "Secrets", a collaboration with Tiësto and Vassy[18] was a huge EDM hit, streaming through buzz charts, and reaching the top of the Beatport Chart. Hollowell-Dhar had a number of other Beatport hits, such as "No Heroes", "Burn", "Secrets", "Dead Mans Hand", "Kashmir", "Dogs", "Karate", "It Feels (KSHMR Remix)" and "Jammu". The logo, his artist name and some tracks like "Delhi", "Jammu", "Kashmir", "Bazaar", "Dharma" and his "Paradesi EP" are based on Indian Culture, inspired by his Kashmiri ethnic descent. In June 2015, Hollowell-Dhar announced he would host with Spinnin' Records a remix contest for his track "Jammu"[20] – the first prize being a collaboration with Hollowell-Dhar on a new track. The contest was held on Spinnin Records' Talent Pool platform and the first place went to KYFRA, who won the collaboration with Hollowell-Dhar. In July 2015, Hollowell-Dhar released his highly anticipated debut sound pack exclusively with Splice Sounds.[21] After the contest, Hollowell-Dhar announced his first live performance,[22] at the Fonda Theater, Los Angeles. The show took place on September 19, 2015.[23]


He released "The Lion Across The Field EP" on May 13, 2016, his first album.[24] He co-produced 'Tsunami' by DVBBS & Borgeous, as well as 'Stampede' by Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike vs. DVBBS & Borgeous.[25] On July 23, 2016, he performed his first set in the Tomorrowland music festival, on the mainstage. On September 5, 2016, he collaborated with Tigerlily to release his new single, "Invisible Children".[26] Hollowell-Dhar said "The project was already a great start. I added my ideas and it came together pretty quickly. The name comes from a term referring to slum kids in India and places around the world where poverty is so rampant that people begin to stop noticing".[26] Two weeks later, he was awarded "Best Live Act" category on DJ Mag 2016. His place elevated from 23rd to 12th in DJ Mag's 2016 Top 100 DJs list.[27] On October 24, 2016, he collaborated with Bassjackers to release their single "Extreme" featuring Sidnie Tipton via Spinnin' Records.[28] In an emailed statement, Bassjackers said "Besides a musical connection, we also developed a friendship outside of music. We think that friendship contributes to what makes this song so special".[28] In October 2016, he released his new song with Will Sparks titled "Voices" as a free download on Spinnin' Premium.[29]


In March 2017, KSHMR released "Back To Me" with Crossnaders featuring Micky Blue.[30] He performed at Ultra Music Festival on March 24, 2017, with Timmy Trumpet and played with live musicians throughout the whole set for the first time in his career, as he wrote:

This was a special show for me, playing with live musicians throughout the whole set for the first time in my career. Respect to them and my good friend Timmy Trumpet for stopping by and bringing his magic as well.

On June 16, 2017, "Harder", a collaboration between KSHMR and Tiësto was released via Spinnin' Records.[31] The first song released via KSHMR's label, Dharma WorldWide, was "Festival of Lights", a collaboration with Maurice West. "Festival of Lights" is heavily based on Indian culture.[32] Within a week, KSHMR released "Kolkata" on July 28, 2017, a collaboration with JDG and Mariana BO on Dharma WorldWide.[33] He also played at the Mainstage of Tomorrowland 2017 July 29, a day after releasing "Kolkata". "Divination", a collaboration between KSHMR and Dutch duo No Mondays was released on August 4, 2017.[34] "The Serpent" was released on the same day as a collaboration between Snails and KSHMR.[35] On September 22, 2017 KSHMR launched "Power" with Hardwell on Spinnin' Records.[36] KSHMR collaborated with Bollywood singer Sonu Nigam for track "Underwater" which was released on October 13, 2017 on his label Dharma Worldwide.[37][38] On December 1, 2017, KSHMR released "Islands"[39] on Dharma Worldwide which was a collaboration with electro house producer R3HAB. Within the same month, KSHMR worked with producers Marnik and The Golden Army to release a psy-trance influenced big room house track titled "Shiva" on December 29, 2017.[40]


KSHMR released "House Of Cards" on February 16, 2018 which features a return by singer Sidnie Tipton, who previously collaborated with the artist on "Wildcard".[41] Lacking KSHMR's notable big room elements, the track is influenced by pop and acoustic components such as guitar riffs in the song's break.[42] He also played the mainstage of Ultra Music Festival Miami with a set presenting new tracks and many of his well-known productions.[43] On May 18, 2018, KSHMR released "Doonka" which incorporates elements of both big room and trap music as a free download with Mr.Black.[44] KSHMR collaborated with Jake Reese to release "Carry Me Home" on June 15, 2018, a progressive house song originally premiered at his 2018 Ultra Music Festival performance.[45] Commenting on the track's production, KSHMR stated, "Carry Me Home started with the drop melody. I was scared I wouldn’t find a vocal I loved just as much, but Jake Reese and [co-writer Joren van der Voort] blew me away with what they wrote."[46] He released Greek-influenced single "Opa" with Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike on July 22, 2018,[47][48] and "Neverland" with 7 Skies on August 3, 2018 which combined the genres of bounce and big room house.[49] The duo had previously worked together on a sample pack titled Symphony-Serum Hybrid Orchestra on music creation platform Splice. His next single titled "Good Vibes Soldier", which was co-produced with Israeli psytrance duo Vini Vici and comprises elements of reggaeton and rap, was released on August 24, 2018.[50] On November 2, 2018, he released big room single "Magic", which features uncredited vocals by Vassy.[51] Dancing Astronaut lauded the track as a return to KSHMR's older era sound, together with its vocal resemblance to David Guetta's "Bad".[52] Regarding the song's backstory, KSHMR revealed that "Magic" was originally produced with Adrian Lux two years prior, with the duo failing to bring the track into the right direction then. Lux eventually gave up on the song, but KSHMR continued working on the song until its final release.[51]


KSHMR's first release of the year was a collaboration with Belgian DJ Yves V and American band Krewella titled "No Regrets".[53] Released through Dharma on March 1, 2019, the track's chord patterns and drop were favorably compared to Alan Walker's signature sounds.[54][55] In the same month Kshmr released 'Devil inside me' with Swedish producer Kaaze and vocalist Kaara.[56] The melody of the song samples some elements the Jewish ballad, "Shalom Alechem".[57] On June 24, 2019, KSHMR announced the release of a new educational Dharma Worldwide platform consisting of tutorials, templates, and samples.[58] Following that, a big room collaboration with Australian producer Timmy Trumpet, titled "The People", was released on June 28, 2019.[59] The next day, he released "Lies" with Dutch producer B3rror featuring the vocals of Luciana. KSHMR then released "My Best Life" with Australian singer Mike Waters on July 12, 2019. Regarding the song, Niles said, "This song, made by me and Mike Waters, is about social media and how it has become a tool for measuring ourselves. We talked about how it can be freeing to submit to the fact that somebody will always have nicer things and from there the lyrics came together".[60] The track sparked some controversy with Indian rapper Emiway Bantai's song "Machayenge" as the both sampled some portions from KSHMR's sample pack Sounds of KSHMR Volume 3.[citation needed]



Year Award Nominated work Category Result
2015 DJ Mag Himself Top 100 DJs 23 [61]
2016 12 [62]
2017 12 [63]
2018 18 [64]
2019 15 [65]


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