Incognito! Immersed deep in rehearsal for almost a decade! Never rushed to get on to the stage nor did he knock on the door of the studio while half-knowledge. These days, he comes out of the studio singing songs. The technician says with a smile, "There is no need to tweak anything (that) he sings. He sings in tune. Flawless!"
He is a melodic singer, Prabin Bedwal, a pick of many music lovers.
While learning, Prabin's teacher and friends would say, "Now record a song." But how? He himself did not know.
To his luck, this work was done by "Nepal Idol". Prabin participated in the third season of Nepal Idol. In that season, he won the first runner-up title. Bigger than the title, this competition arranged for him quite a big number of audience/listeners. Then, Praveen entered the studio to sing songs.
Prabin spent half of his childhood in Bardiya
Half of Prabin's childhood was spent in Rajapur, Bardia. His father was an Indian soldier, always busy in his duty. His mother followed him whenever he was posted, leaving seven days old Prabin in the care of his grandmother. He grew up playing with his grandparents.
"We have a joint family with more than 30 members. But for grandma, I was the only one," he said. "She loves me unconditionally. I also love her very much. I don't love anyone but her with a pure heart. But again, family is a family. It is needed."
Bardia's life was beautiful. Fields, barns full of livestock, pots full of milk. Going to school with friends, taking cattle to graze, and playing with kids under the care of kind grandparents, were great fun. Prabin pines for the same life even today.
As time passes by childhood is gone; Bardiya's bond is gone together. He traveled to South India to pursue his passion for music.
Prabin, who completed his 8th grade in Bardia, used to sing beautifully even then. The gurus who taught Prabin were fascinated by his voice. He also sang while studying in India. Got a good response. After completing Plus 2, he wanted to pursue a formal education in music. Studied music with Guru for a few years. His friends said, "Music should be learned in a college." Then Prabin joined a college in Tamil Nadu and started learning music.
Prabin, who had a longing to study music, felt that wherever he heard music, the music was always the same. He came to Gwalior to learn music but could not decide where to learn music for a long time. He says, "During the search, I met Guru Vinod Hazare. I said, "I want to learn music. If you want to teach, fine, if not, recommend a good teacher." Then he referred to Ustad Barkat Ali Khan Sahab.
Khan asked Prabin one question, "Do you want to learn music?" Prabin replied, "Yes". Guru told him to come whenever he wanted. He reached his place early the next morning. Guru was happy. He was the Guru's dearest disciple.
Untouched by parental affection
Prabin could not live with his parents since childhood. He had to wait for 3/4 years to meet his parents. He never felt the longing for the care of his parents since they left him behind seven days after his birth. He didn't make himself sad by looking for affection in their faces that appeared only sporadically. But when friends used to post pictures of celebrations with their parents at Matatirtha Aunsi and Kuse Aunsi, Prabin would feel sad.
Music distanced Prabin further from his father. His father did not want his son to sing. He wanted his son to follow in his footsteps. His father used to say, "You can't do anything in music."
Prabin had his own dreams and determination. His father's heart was badly broken when his son refused to join the army. He also followed his father's promise to join the army. Towards the end of the training, he left the training and ran away. That's when he met with an accident. Prabin got his arm fractured in the accident, which left his father's dream shattered. "After that, we hardly spoke. There is no good dialogue even now," shares Prabin.
Prabin's one hand doesn't work well. He always walks with his hands in his pockets. Even on the stage of Nepal Idol, he did not tell the story of his hand to the audience. Many thought it was his style. Some people even asked, "Why do you walk with your hands in your pockets?" There is nothing to be gained by exposing misery. He says, "If you start complaining about your weaknesses, you will lose your dignity and self-respect. My job is to sing. I should be careful in singing."
Almost 14 years after the success of Idol, Prabin went to meet his parents. His father was not happy with his success. There was no dialogue between the son and the father other than the exchange of formal greetings. But even today Prabin and his father do not speak. Living in this age of technology, these father and son do not receive calls from each other's mobile phones.
"My father is tough and stubborn. I am more like his product. I'm an updated version of him, more touchy-feely,” recounts Prabin.
When asked if he doesn't remember his parents, Prabin retorts, "Come on, I always keep silent on Father's Day. Everyone celebrates on Facebook. Feels awkward. I stay off the internet all day. But some feelings have to be suppressed. It makes people stronger."
There are joys and sorrows in life. He readily accepted both. Who is distanced, who is close, it did not affect his life. As long as there is grandmother, his world is bright. "There is a God in everyone's life. The God of my life is my grandmother. I remember my grandmother the same way people thank God when their work is successful," Prabin recalls the contribution of his grandmother in his life.
Passion for singing
After the journey of Nepal Idol, Prabin has sung more than 2,200 songs. He lent his voice to all the songs offered to date. Many of the songs he sang won the hearts of many music enthusiasts. Some of them are yet to be made public. Prabin accepted all the offers irrespective of the quality since it was the beginning of his career.
During this time he also sang many songs to maintain relationships and not to offend anyone's feelings. After all, it was Prabin's passion for music. Prabin is no longer in a rush to sing, now. He doesn't need too many creations numerically, either.
He says, "Now I sing only a few songs. No matter how many songs you sing for life, it is not enough. It would be great to have two songs for recognition. Now I would rather invest myself but only sing select songs. Until now, I was preparing to enter the music field. Now I am all set." (Photos by Saroj Baizu)