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The Globetrotting Musician
While the world fascinates you with limitless talent and a variety of creative abilities within all humans, there is one man to necessarily come across. Presenting to you, the story of an Indian gospel musician who invented the world’s first bongo guitar: Benny Prasad.
Benny with his Bentar; Source: Chai 316

Born on 6th August 1975

While musicians and their performance tours are quite the expected combination one must have come across, Benny Prasad had something much extraordinary in his mind. Before you get told about his excellent musical abilities, here’s a peek into a world record he set and it isn’t related to music.

Benny is credited to have the fastest world record of visiting 245 countries. These were a total of 194 sovereign countries, 50 dependent countries plus Antarctica to top it off with a cherry.

Having been known for some great hymns and harmonized vocals, Benny had a life that didn't start off too well. However, tables seemed to turn after years of struggle, and that's one reason he is deeply grateful to the presence of God and has decided to devote his life to singing songs for the almighty.

Born on 6th August 1975, Benny's early teen life seemed to have turned into a catastrophic series of events. His father worked as a scientist in the National Aerospace Laboratories. If the father was a scientist, the son had to become like him and set an example for his other siblings, right? A toxic ideology that sticks in the mindset of many parents. Regardless of what Benny liked or wanted, he was grilled for hours and expected to excel just like his father.

Consistent ignorance and negligence towards Benny's desires turned him into a child who lied and excelled in forgery. He now struggled with anger issues and a serious case of asthma.

His asthma demanded he depends on cortisone steroids at a very young age. With such a highly strong dosage on such a young body, Benny was soon diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. Almost 60% of his lung was now damaged with a fragile immune system. He was just a 16-year-old boy who had no more hope left in his life. Cornered into a situation so dark, his mind drove him to the point where he couldn't decide on anything but suicide.

After his attempt at committing suicide, Benny's mother insisted he joins the retreat center. Abiding by the same, Benny joined Youth With a Mission and underwent training through the Discipleship Training School and School of Biblical Studies (SBS) in Bangalore. Furthermore, he attended courses under the School of Music in Missions in New Mexico, USA and a School of Events Management in Townsville, Australia.

Benny slowly made up for his past self and emerged newly with an Associate of Arts degree through YWAM's University of the Nations. This life-altering process he went through made him forever grateful to God and thus began his divine journey towards music.

Soon after his graduation, he was invited to perform at the Orchid Festival in Singapore as a guest artist. This was just the start of his career as a musician. Soon there were many such events he was called to perform at. Some milestone events of his include performances at the 2004 Greece Olympic Games, the 2006 FIFA World Cup, and the 2007 Military World Games.

In January 2008, Benny was awarded a Hon. Doctorate for inventing the Bentar and his musical travelling.

'If I could be made useful, anyone in this world can. If my dreams can come true, yours can too. My sin and shame has been exchanged for righteousness and new life by the Almighty GOD JESUS CHRIST to set me free.'

These are some words by the lively Benny Prasad. His story is nothing less than courageous and inspirational. Everything he has achieved in his life is solely through self-introspection and his own growth. You are truly a wonderful man to look up to. A very happy birthday, hope your life remains as adventurous as it is!

Archisa Mohanty Author
To make art, read and explore the world of art and artists is one of my biggest passions. I'm a literature fan and I think life's stupidly great.

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