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Rahul Vaidya
Indian Idol finalist Rahul Vaidya gets set to release his first-ever solo album. As he tells The Record, life couldn't be better.

Rahul Vaidya is seated at a table in a sunny hotel room, mobile phone glued to his ear, patiently answering the same questions over and over again. It has been an incredibly long day of back-to-back interviews and the 18-year-old singer is a little exhausted. When he finally greets us though, it is with a warm smile firmly in place.

Vaidya definitely has reason to be happy ~ till last year he was just another college student with big musical dreams. Now, after making it to the final three in the first-ever Indian Idol contest, he is seated amidst a whirlwind of activity, all geared towards the release of his solo debut. He settles down, with his back to a life-size cut-out of himself, and tells us, “My debut solo album, Tera Intezar, is an out-and-out romantic album which took about six months to create. It has taken time because a lot of effort and thought has been invested in the album; we always wanted the best quality of work for it. Basically, more than an album, it is the story of a teenager when he's in love, how he reacts when he's happy, sad, excited, when he wants to party...” It's perfect material for Vaidya who describes himself as a fun-loving, happy-go-lucky teen.

His life since Idol however, has been unlike that of most teenagers. As he tells it, “There has been a big increase in my professional understanding. These months have taught me many things about the music business. On a personal level though, there hasn't been a change in me ~ I am the same Rahul Vaidya who plays cricket with his friends and goes to have kulfi every night. The change with that is that now people know me. So now when I go to have kulfi, cars will stop, people talk to me, tell me that they were so sad that I got eliminated.” He smiles, “It's good to know that people know you.”

One of the people who recognised his talent early on was famed singer Suresh Wadkar. Says Vaidya, “Sureshji has been my guru. He has taught me how to listen to good music, he has taught me what it is all about. I have learned singing from him and humility from him also. I used to sing as a kid. I used to carry my notebooks with me to the studio because it would often get late. That time I wasn't scared or nervous about anyone. Now I know who people are and understand more so I get self-conscious sometimes.” The juggling of schedules is even more hectic, what with all the fame and adulation. But it's not without its advantages. Laughs Vaidya, “College is amazing! Especially for the girls who I always wished would look at me ~ one glance, one smile... They never used to smile at me before, but now it's changed! [Laughs] That is a quite a pleasant feeling. [Pauses] I am not really into all that though. I want to learn and sing as well as I can.”

You can read the rest of our feature on Rahul Vaidya in the October 2005 issue of The Record Music Magazine available at your local newsagent.


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