Diwas Gurung: Underrated piece in modern Nepali music’s promising puzzle

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Growing up successful Kathmandu, Diwas Gurung ne'er thought that helium would marque it successful the euphony manufacture fto unsocial beryllium 1 of Nepal’s astir sought-after euphony producers. In the span of 3 decades that helium has dedicated to music, helium has been a portion of bands successful Nepal and the US, done aggregate solo projects and worked with the biggest up-and-coming stars Nepal has to connection successful Bartika Eam Rai, Bikki Gurung, Yugal Gurung and astir precocious Dibesh Pokharel aka Arthur Gunn.

“It’s large to beryllium moving with radical similar these,” says Gurung. “I get to larn things arsenic good which, successful the euphony business, helps you germinate successful a way.”

Apart from producing music, Gurung is besides a vocalist and songwriter. His lyrics are meaningful and nostalgic. He takes radical backmost successful clip with his soulful vocals and rhythmic melodies. There are galore who accidental that his accumulation exploits person overshadowed his singing ability. While helium continues to nutrient euphony for himself, successful the adjacent future, helium wants to commencement a workplace successful Nepal, marque euphony for himself and assistance the caller property of Nepali musicians and singers scope a much planetary stage.

“I privation to stock what I person learnt. If that helps a Nepali go large globally, that is conscionable a bonus.” 

Hobby into profession

Gurung archetypal picked up a guitar erstwhile helium was ten-years-old. Listening to bands similar ACDC, Metallica and artists similar Steve Vai, helium grew a emotion for the instrument. But, with the instrumentality hard to play, Gurung gave up initially lone to prime it up again erstwhile helium was 14. 

What started arsenic a hobby became an obsession, and helium and his guitar were inseparable. Whenever helium was free, helium would prime it up and play until helium was tired.

“There was a clip erstwhile my parents had to fell the guitar due to the fact that I would alternatively play the guitar than study.”

By the 2000s, his guitar skills improved arsenic helium started to perceive and practise guitar-centric songs. As helium got better, helium started to get offers to articulation bands. One band, successful particular, was keen connected his services arsenic helium acceptable their benignant and genre perfectly.

Albatross were successful modulation during that time. And, arsenic I had escaped clip earlier I near for the US, I decided to articulation them.”

Even though Albatross present are much progressive, erstwhile Gurung was a portion of them, they were much influenced by dense metallic arsenic they emulated bands similar Pantera and Sepultura.

“Since I was into guitar a lot, I loved it. Best years of my beingness I deliberation arsenic playing with them was a truly amusive experience,” helium says, “I enjoyed it a batch arsenic backmost then, each I wanted to bash was play music. I was addicted.”

Same passionateness successful caller place

But successful 2002, helium near Nepal for the US to prosecute a grade successful economics, and with that, his philharmonic travel successful Nepal came to an end.

With 1 travel ending, different 1 started successful Ithaca, a tiny assemblage municipality successful the suburbs of New York.

Even though helium was funny successful music, helium inactive thought that studying it arsenic a large was not practical. He felt that the operation was excessively rigid and that musicians needed flexibility and state to guarantee that they made the close benignant of music. “Studying euphony ne'er appealed to me. I believed that it was thing I would beryllium amended astatine by practising.”

While successful college, helium met Shrikhar Bajracharya who lived with his household successful Ithaca. The 2 past formed a set called Ayurveda which was a rock-based set with a progressive benignant that is ambient, heavy, and alternate with physics and Nepali influences.

“Shikhar, similar me, was obsessed with guitars and we connected consecutive away.”

By 2006, they were doing shows crossed the US catering to some US and Nepali audiences and were signaling albums and EPs. The set were besides progressive successful Gurung’s Rato Mato, which was a postulation of aged classical Nepali songs.

“As I was nary longer a student, I was offered a visa arsenic a taste creator by the US government. For that, I had to bash taste shows connected a regular ground and we started 1 called Nepali Folk Night astatine Ithaca itself.”

During that time, helium started to perceive to aged Nepali classics hoping to screen them successful his ain style. That is how, successful 2009, Rato Mato came to be.

“We felt that if we did an album, it would solidify what we were doing astatine the people nighttime and it would beryllium bully grounds for my visa application, which during that time, I had to renew each year.”

From playing to producing

Thanks to Rato Mato, helium started to get noticed. Gurung and Bajracharya started to circuit the US to places wherever Nepali diaspora were present. That is not it, helium and his set were besides invited to travel to play successful Nepal. But, they ne'er had the accidental arsenic the set broke up successful 2013.

“It wasn’t a ceremonial breakup, but we conscionable had antithetic priorities, which is each good.”

After that, Gurung moved to Brooklyn, New York, wherever helium continued to marque euphony portion doing antithetic jobs. Initially, it was hard for him to marque euphony arsenic helium usually did that with Ayurveda’s drummer Mike Parker who worked astatine a studio, but with it not being applicable to spell determination anymore, helium started to larn the creation of production.

“I spent astir 10,000 hours signaling and producing the medium Jharana Sahar successful 2015. Learned a lot, experimented a lot. It was genuinely an medium I could telephone my ain arsenic Rato Mato was done with assistance from Mike and others from Ayurveda.”

Confident capable to nutrient music, helium past started to get requests from radical wrong his ellipse to nutrient and premix euphony for them. His archetypal paid gig was a task for Sumnima Rai, a US-based singer/songwriter. 

After that, helium continued to nutrient and premix songs for low-fi artists, but helium was inactive figuring retired a batch of things. Music accumulation was conscionable different happening helium did to wage his bills and past successful New York.

But, his vocation truly blew up erstwhile Bartika Eam Rai contacted him to nutrient and technologist her album Bimbaakash.

“It was unexpected for some of us. After that, I started to bash this afloat clip arsenic I got contacted by a batch of artists who wanted to enactment with me.”

He says that moving with these young artists is simply a batch of fun, mainly, erstwhile helium and the artists are connected the aforesaid page. 

“They attack maine ’cause they subordinate to my sound. If we tin find communal ground, moving becomes rather fun.”

He says moving with Bartika, Phosphenes, Yugal and Dibesh was rather casual arsenic they already had an thought of what they wanted their dependable to beryllium like. And that, helium says, made enactment casual for him. But that said, with immoderate artists, it is rather hard and takes aggregate tries to find the close balance.

“It’s conscionable portion of the job, I guess, due to the fact that I’ve been producing indie, low-fi and popular songs, truthful sometimes uncovering the communal crushed is simply a spot hard.”

He says that helium wants his clients to person the aforesaid feeling that helium had erstwhile helium produced his archetypal song: The feeling of elation, joyousness and pride. 

“I don’t person the feeling myself due to the fact that I’ve been doing this for truthful agelong I astir consciousness jaded. Producing my ain songs, I think, I sometimes overdo it arsenic I don’t get a 2nd opinion. But, successful their case, they tin archer maine if they don’t similar a definite happening and we tin enactment connected it.”

Currently, helium is moving connected releasing his medium on with producing euphony for others. Even though helium has released astir of the songs, helium says, helium inactive wants to merchandise his medium arsenic helium does not privation to support it connected clasp for long.

“If I bash that, it’ll beryllium connected clasp everlastingly which is wherefore my main absorption close present is to merchandise this medium arsenic soon arsenic possible.”

Original Story