11 Underrated Nepali Indie Musicians You Need To Follow
For how small Nepal is as a country, we sure have a lot of musical talent. We have many gifted musicians, and a few make it into the mainstream because of their universal appeal.
However, we have many musical talents who are often overlooked in favor of the big names. There are some amazing gems to be found in the far reaches of the Nepali music scene. So, here are 11 underrated indie musicians of Nepal that you need to follow.
Kelsang Shrestha is an 18-year-old singer-songwriter who came onto the scene two years ago with the song, Bijuli Dai. Take one listen to the composition and you would scarcely believe it was written by a young teenager.
He has released a few more singles since that time, and each one is as perfect as the last. Kelsang is the one artist on the list you absolutely HAVE to keep on your radar.
The earliest video on Simma Rai’s YouTube channel goes back nine years. Her voice is a sweet soprano that reminds you of Nepali legends such as Tara Devi.
While she has been uploading covers on and off over the years, she has recently started uploading originals as well. And they are nothing short of hidden gems.
Ankit Shrestha has enjoyed something of an underground following over the years, having uploaded the chill percussive guitar-accompanied composition The Underwater Song seven years ago on his YouTube channel.
He has been quite busy as of late, uploading cover videos as well as originals. You should definitely recognize his song Yaadharu. So, here’s what we recommend — give his other songs a listen.
Yabesh Thapa suddenly went viral a year ago with Laakhau Hajarau — a magical composition the likes of which every generation unconsciously awaits.
Yabesh continues to upload new compositions to his YouTube channel, besides making appearances in other channels too. He has a highly confessional style with songs that are often put together with emotive, lo-fi images. Perfect for late-night listens.
Prabesh Kumar Shrestha
Prabesh Kumar Shrestha has been uploading musical covers on his YouTube channel for the past two years. Accompanied only by a single acoustic guitar, he showcased a deep musical sensibility and brought songs to life.
Recently, he has started uploading originals to his channel. And you better believe that the compositions are a treat.
Yugal Gurung has a special musical flair in his compositions that is unique in the Nepali music scene. Add to that his intimate, crooning voice and you get something otherworldly.
Phatcowlee is the musical alter-ego of a well-known face in the Nepali music scene — Rajan Shrestha, of Jindabaad.
Rajan is a trained musical pedagogue and holds an ethnomusicology degree from Kathmandu University. His work is similarly meticulous and far-spreading — an educated blend of Nepali soundscapes with electronic influences.
Kalpana Pun has the kind of indie soul that sends you spiraling into hours of beautiful, long-winded ruminations. For all that, though, she is quite an elusive persona. The few songs of hers that are on YouTube are found across different channels, so you can’t help but crave for more.
Jerusha Rai is an old soul with the heart of a true artist. Her tunes come from a deeper well, and carry heavy echoes of ethnic musical forms.
Diwas Gurung occupies a strange place in the musical map of Nepal. In the past, he’s been involved with Albatross. Others know him from his work with the band Ayurveda, while still others may know him as the talented producer of Bartika Eam Rai’s music.
The versatile Diwas is all of these, and in recent years has been pursuing his own solo projects as well.
While this list mostly includes solo artists, it wouldn’t be complete without the band Phosphenes. This band fully embodies the indie soul and aesthetic, and they do so in a way that is relatable to everyone. Enjoy this aural and visual treat below.
So, these are some of the amazing musical artists of Nepal that have been flying under the radar. And for all their talents, they absolutely deserve greater recognition. Who is your favorite Nepali artist, who has yet to be discovered by the masses?
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