Drona Basnet, a 24 year old is a final year student of Royal Thimphu College, who is one of the rising Bhutanese rappers. Thus musician, by fortune or coincident, is born exactly on the World’s music day (on the 21st June.)
In 2013, when Drona was just an 18 year old teenager, he released his first rap song with the title ‘To my Ex’, which today is one of the most viewed rap songs with over 13K viewers in the youtube. The rap song is particularly famous among the teenagers and young lovers where the love and heart break is apparently common. It is about a girl who left her lover behind to go to some richer guys. You can watch this ‘To my Ex’ at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FNvqsjvA0VY
Today, Drona has over 62 tracks official released one of which is ‘Hey beautiful’ featuring Sonam Wangchen. His Dzongkha track called ‘Chi Ni Sum’ is the game changer wherein the lyrics are quite abusive to the other guy who perhaps must have overlooked upon him. You can watch this ‘Chi Ni Sum at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fdE9Q3nlkUM
To continue pursuing his passion in rapping and contribute in the growth of the music diversities, Drona owns his personal music studio called FLO Studio. In this studio, he sticks in the production of hip-hop beats, raps and mashes – the area in which he personally is interested at.
In this post, let us read the short informal interview that I had with Drona over facebook:
- Which rappers have inspired you?
Ans: There are actually quite a number of rappers whom I do look up to but it is mostly the rappers like 2pac, Notorious Big, MGK, Eminem and Kedrick Lamar.
2. What do you like the most about rapping?
I always believe that a true artist doesn’t sing or rap to impress but to express. So, through my rap, I feel I am being able to express how I feel. The most interesting part is, I as a rapper can also express how other feels, and how the society feels as a whole so that we can together get a holistic view and understand each other.
3. How the society does take you as a rapper?
Bhutan and Bhutanese in general is at a very infant stage of accepting rap as one form of art or music just like our Zhungdra, Boedra and Rigsar. While the society accepting us as an artist is gradually increasing, there are still a portion of people in our society who thinks we are some kind of thugs, a drug addicts who raps about hatred, money and degrading women and stuff like that. But what should be known for the good of all is that we rappers are also like any other artists who strive to bring new songs, new lyrics, new compositions and new entertainments.
4. Do you think you can make livelihoods in Bhutan just by being the rapper?
Ans: Oh no, not at all at least for the next 20 years! Earning livelihoods just by being the rapper is very tight especially for the rapper like me who raps mostly in English. There are only a fraction of listeners who likes English rap songs. Our scale of audience is countable. But for the other artists who sing Dzongkha, it is quite possible for them to earn livelihoods out of singing. For instance, we have a number of singers like Ugyen Pandey, Pem Deki, Tshering Yangden (Pinky) and Tandin Wangchuk (Misty Terrace) who certainly makes livelihoods being artists.
5. What messages do you have for your fans?
Ans: Work hard, be humble, follow your dreams and keep getting fond of raps as there is increasing number of young us who are rap enthusiasts, and we shall keep you entertained.
And to all the music lovers who aspire to become a singer, a drummer, a guitarist, a rapper, or a comedian, if you ever feel like quitting, just remember why you started it the first.
Some weird encounters of Drona Basnet
Drona Prasad, as you make out from his name that he is a Southern Bhutanese, and, sometimes, our society at a very minimal-laughable scale tends to get divide by the region we are born to. Drona, in our conversation revealed that after he caught the public attention as a rapper and started acquiring fans and supporters, he also got some haters.
He said, “I received several warnings, threats and defamation saying I am a ‘Jagaa’, but this doesn’t affect me since I am also a proud Bhutanese citizen holding a Bhutanese Citizenship Identity card.”
Here, what I personally would want to clarify is that, from whichever region we comes from, we are seen as one people by their Majesties, and that suffices to ignore all the silly comments made by few ignorant minds.
Drona – the rapper is the one of our youth icon, the rising Bhutanese rapper who is socially active working on various projects with various artists. He is also often seen giving live performances at various functions and events.
This rapper’s only dream is to keep continuing being the musician, keep inspiring and keep contributing the goodness in the society.