Group: Damodar Sharma and Group
A 57-year-old artist from Raya in Mathura, Damodar Sharma, has been learning music through classical and folk forms. At the young age of 12, he began to learn by taking inspiration from his mother. He has been working hard towards achieving mastery in his craft and pursues it with soaring, sumptuous and tremendous passion. He considers his mother as his Guru and speaks very highly of her teachings. She was the one who sowed the seed of music into him at a very young age by making him read Bhagwat and Ram Charitramanas to her. Most of his Bhajans are, therefore, sung to be in a similar style as hers. He believes that music has been passed on to him by his mother, who had a natural talent for mastering the art of singing bhajans. When he was a child, he would try to practice the Shlokas in Bhagwat Geeta and Bhajans, and thus picked up the will to sing and never stopped learning. He is an expert in Ashawari Raag Bhajans and loves to sing the ragas such as Yaman, Khamaj, Bharavi, and Aheer Bhairav. He also knows how to play the harmonium apart from singing and has performed in various locations within the country. Damodar has pulled off brilliant performances in Agra, Aligarh, Rajasthan, and all-over India through AIR concerts. When asked, he regards his performance at Cuttack alongside a beach as the most memorable experience. He lives in a joint family of 12 people, his wife, a daughter, a son, daughter-in-law. etc. Thus, he also has to work as a farmer to make ends meet. Despite all his struggles, he strives to keep developing his craft and dreams to teach the younger generation. By creating interest in them, he wishes to preserve the art for eternity.
- Uttar Pradesh