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Dilaawar Khan comes from Kotra village in Shiv Tehsil of Barmer District. This 30 years old khartaal player is also a backing vocalist n his group. He is the Disciple of Ustaad Ghafoor khan, who is his maternal uncle. He has been a performer since the last 8 years. Apart from performing is this group, he has also formed his own group with the name Dilaawar Khan & group, where he is the frontman. & also teaches music to his group members. The size of his group ranges from 4-25 folk musicians, as per the demand.
Coming from a family having rich background in music, Dilaawar Khan described that he learned from his family members only and never had to go outside to learn music. He does riyaaz for 6 hours daily & has already started training his children in singing. He generally performs the songs written by their forefathers. He himself has written a few songs along with his Uncle. The songs generally describe the event of birth of prince, their Marriages and other family events. He is well versed performer of Sufi Music. Apart from performing traditional Rajasthani songs, they also perform Bollywood songs, but only on request.
He has travelled to various countries like U.S.A., Russia, U.K., Japan, Turkey, Egypt, etc. For three years, he was a part of Gypsy all Stars group, where they were making Fusion Music & performed all around the globe. He has worked with various artists from Classical music & classical dance (kathak) background too. He claims that he can perform with artists of different genres and is very comfortable to play & sing along with them. He can understand English as he has been to various countries now. His dream is to work with more artists of various different backgrounds, be it musicians or dancers.
Mushtaq Khan belongs to kohra village from Fatehgarh tehsil in Jaisalmer District. He Plays dholak in the group. Besides that, he also plays khartaal. He learnt Playing Dholak from Ustaad Ghafoor Khan, starting at the age of 8 years. Mushtaq idolises Ustaad Ghafoor khan and is a permanent member of his group. He has been to various countries like Spain,Morocco, Vietnam, France Belgium, Korea, Thailand etc. along with Ustaad Ghafoor Khan’s group. He also performs in other groups of different background as well, but found a considerable difference in the singing of Classical singers & folk singers.
He is a very passionate musician who does his riyaaz regularly and also teaches the children to play Dholak & Khartaal.
Kootal Khan comes from pasht devda village of Fatehgarh Tehsil in district jaisalmer. In Ghafoor khan’s group, he sings and sometimes plays Harmonium as well. This 47 year old folk Musician got music as a heritage from his forefathers. He primarily learnt the basic technicalities from his father and found inspiration in him. He started learning singing & playing Musical Instruments at the mere age of 7 years, and soon left school to perform at various family events in their village, where he used to be a part of group.
He along with his group were one of the very first musicians identified by Kamal Kothari, and were given an opportunity to perform in abroad. After that, it became a routine affair for them to perform in abroad. He along with his group have collaborated with various foreign artists and tried fusion with them, which enriched their experience. But he still remains a very humble & modest musician and admits that he still needs to learn a lot. He says that learning is a never ending process. He along with Ghafoor Khan are certified ‘A’ Grade musician from All India Radio since the last 15 years. He says that their folk music is very similar to Classical Music. Their traditional songs are called ‘Jangra’ which are basically songs on 7 or 14 beats just like Hindutani & Carnatic Music
For Kootal Khan, Music is Love of his life. He describes learning music as an endless and very interesting journey. He believes in working hard and wants to spend rest of his life singing and learning music. He teaches music to his grandson after getting back to home. His wish is that this legacy of singing shall be taken forward by his son & grandson.
Kalyaan Khan is a very interesting personality. He is just 16 years old and can play almost all the folk instrument that he has come across. Currently, he is serving as a dholak player in the group. Besides that, he can also play Harmonium khartaal , Dhol. He started singing folk music at the mere age of six years, and there has been no looking back since then. At the age of 12 years, he started adding various folk instruments to his skill-set, and is still learning. He got inspired from the people who used to come to his village from outside to perform. He felt that they themselves should perform the folk music rather than getting people from outside to perform. So he started learning the instruments along with singing.
He along with his Father has taught Khartaal to one Spanish man, who resided with them for three months. His Biggest achievement is that despite being illiterate he uses social media like facebook & youtube which was taught to him by the Spanish Folk music student. Now Kalyaan Khan uses social medium as a medium of learning & has become a very tech-savy person. He wishes if he could have studied a little, he might have understood using the Internet better. His father works for Gunsar Lok Sangeet School, which is setup by Rajasthani Folk artist Bax Khan. He also goes there along with his father in the evening and does Riyaaz regularly as a routine.
Kalyan Khan loves listening to Nusrat Fateh ali khan’s Qawwalis and considers him as his idol. He loves Sufi singing and practices it more regularly. His favourite raga is Raga Kalyan, . Currently, he is happy with the money that he is earning, and wishes to continue with this profession only.
Ameen Khan is a 21 year old all-round musician from Barmer. Primarily, he plays Khartaal in the group. Apart from that he can also play Harmonium & Dholak and is well versed with most of the folk music instruments. He has learned from his brother Khete Khan and has been into music from almost 12 years. He is a permanent member of this group, and also performs with other groups as well. He belongs to Sunta Gharana, which gave him exposure to music early on in his life, and has been focussing on only music after he left school in 7th standard. He listens to Ghulam Ali’s songs and follows his style very closely. Besides that, Nusrat fateh Ali khan also inspires him. He is well versed in performing sufi & Qawwali songs. His favourite raga is Raga Maand.
Ameen khan is very passionate when it comes to music, and dedicatedly follows a strict routine. He wakes up early in the morning and does Riyaaz for 4 hours from 5-9 am. Then in the evening, he trains young Mirasi musicians at Mahindra Gunsar Lok Sangeet Sansthan, a Music School run by Bax Khan. There he teaches around 25 students, and has been teaching there from quite some time now. His students are already prospering and are performing with established group of folk musicians.
Ameen listens to Bollywood songs and practices them. If given a chance, he would also like to make his mark in Bollywood like his cousin Swaroop Khan. He describes himself attuned in making music and wishes to compose music for Bollywood movies as well. Just like his brother, he has a dream to perform in foreign countries as well, and bring exposure for his students in the music school.
Swaroop khan is a very talented young musician in the group. He is 16 years old & plays almost every Mirasi Folk instrument. He currently plays Khartaal in the group’s lineup. Besides that he also plays dholak, harmonium, Manjeera etc. He is a permanent member in the lineup. Having a very distinctive taste, he loves Bollywood songs and practices them as well. He is a passionate follower of Atif Aslam’s singing, and wishes to be successful just like him. Apart from him, he likes listening to Rahat Fateh Ali Khan’s songs and finds his voice very soothing. He learned from his fellow senior of his group Ali Khan and his Father Rasoul Khan. He is learning to sing and perform Sufi, Qawaali & Ghazals with his group.
He currently studies in 7th standard, and manages studies and music very nicely. Waking up early in the morning, he does Riyaaz for 3 hours from 5 to 8 am as a regular routine. Then after returning from school, he does the riyaaz again for 2 hours. His favourite songs are in Raga Bhairavi, and he is trying to master this particular Raga.
At this young age, he has already travelled to quite a many cities to perform along with his group. Apart from performing in marriages and family functions, he has also performed at various folk Music Festivals along with his group. He says that Music is a very important component of his life & cannot imagine his life without music. He dreams of visiting various foreign countries to perform and bring prosperity for his family.
Isak Khan is a wonderful backing vocalist in the group who has got qualities of a lead singer with a very vast range in his voice. He is 27 years of age and has been learning since the age of 12 years. He is a permanent member of Hasan Khan’s group. He is from Mirasi community and is carrying on the art form that he received as a heritage. They perform live music at almost all the marriage functions that happen in Rajput families. Apart from that, they have also been doing live stage shows with their group across the nation. Their songs include Ghazals & Qawwalis. He is a follower of Ghulam Ali, and follows his style very closely. Apart from that, he also sings songs of Abida Parveen very gracefully. He is not very fond of Bollywood music, but sings on request in private events and live shows. Isak Khan is very well versed in his skill of singing and is very much comfortable in singing with his group members. Whereas, he has experienced that a random instrument player takes time to adjust with his singing, as his singing is very diverse with extreme highs & lows. He has always been keen to learn the instruments he has received in as heritage and can play harmonium as well. Music is everything for him and works hard day and night to improve his skill-set. He is very skilled in Raag Maand, Raag Shaam Kalyan, Raag Bhairavi. He respects Hasan Khan a lot, and has learned majorly from him only. He dreams of becoming famous just like Hasan Khan and wishes to lead a musical group like him.
Swaroop Khan is an adept Dholak & Dhol player who also performs as a backing vocalist. He is 35 years old and is a regular member of his uncle Hasan Khan’s group. He has been playing dholak & dhol in the group since 18 years and began with this group only. He belongs to Gehlot Community and can play the 12 beat rhythms at dhol, which he claims is only played in their community. He does not want to keep himself restricted to their Native folk music and tries to learn folk music of various other cultures as well. That’s what made him to learn Bhangra, Garba, Rajwada as well apart from their native folk music, which he performs when playing with other groups occasionally. He has an inclination towards Sufi & Qawwali Music. He describes that teen taal songs comes the most naturally to him and he enjoys playing teen taal the most. He is the son of Famous Jal taal Player Misri Khan, and claims that their family is the only family in Rajasthan who plays Jal taal. He is also learning to play Jaltaal from his father and describes it as a very time taking process because of the complexity of the Instrument. They have also published a book about the instrument and are very proud of it. Coming from a rich musical background, he feels quite responsible to take forward the art of playing their native folk instruments. His belief that a child always sees an inspiration in his parent motivates him to work harder and practice more. He also teaches his children quite often. He also wishes to travel abroad to perform which would further inspire his children to choose music as a career option.
Shareef khan is the youngest member of Hasan Khan’s squad and is only 16 years old. He has been into Music since last 5 years and plays Khartaal in the group. He is Hasan Khan’s Nephew and the grandson of famous Rajasthan folk musician Akbar Khan. He has already performed in various cities of Rajasthan along with other groups. He is also learning various other instruments like Dholak & Dhol. He is learning various Ragas like Bhairavi and Raag Maand, as is learning singing as well. He follows Rahat Fateh Ali Khan very closely and has all his songs in his Phone memory. Apart from that he also listens to Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan’s qawwalis.
He studies in 10th standard and practices Khartaal regularly along with studies. He practices daily for atleast two hours apart from his studies. He wants to complete his education till 12th standard, but wishes to make career in Music only. He is learning to perform Ghazals and Qawaalis and is interested in Bollywood music as well. He is a follower of Arijit Singh & Atif Aslam and is keen to try his luck in Bollywood. He also performs in his brothers group, where they perform songs composed by his Father and Hasan Khan and also perform Ghazals & Qawwalis. He has already performed at Maharana pratap’s family’s wedding and were appreciated as a group. He wishes to perform around the globe just like his father and take the heritage art form of their family on a world Platform.
Rafeeq khan is a very skilled backing singer and plays harmonium in the group of Hasan khan. He is 32 years old and belongs to Aalamkhana Gharana of Jaisalmer. He is the son of Hasan khan and born & brought up in Jaisalmer only. He has been performing since the age of 12 Years and has done various stage shows across the country apart from playing traditional music in Rajasthani Weddings. He has also played several times in the court of Royal Kings of Rajasthan where the program carries out nightlong and has got appreciation for his musical talent. He has learned from his Father who has always been his inspiration in Music. He is a well versed Sufi, Ghazal & Qawaali singer who also sings the local Maand Raga very well. He follows the style of Nusrat fateh ali Khan and loves his songs. Apart from that, he also enjoys singing songs composed by his father Hasan khan. He is a very proficient Harmonium player and sings equally well while playing Harmonium. He has acquired a very good speed in playing harmonium with practice & hard work. He has a good knowledge of all 36 Ragas and sings songs of various different Ragas. He Majorly sings songs in Maand , bhairavi, Kalyan, and Sarang Ragas. He personally likes song about the topic Moomal’s beauty and performs various songs at request when he is playing at live concerts or doing private events. He describes music as the main reason that he left his studies after 8th grade. He also teaches his children to play Harmonium and also encourages them to work hard at studies as well. He always wishes to work hard in the field of music just like his father did and has a dream of becoming renowned like him.
Khete Khan is a multi-talented personality & Multi –Instrumentalist Musician. This 32 years old musician plays Ghada, harmonium, Dholak & Khartaal. Apart from playing these many instruments he also gives backing vocals in the group. He has been playing since the age of 12 years, when he left education in 4th standard. He has been with Hasan khan’s group since 11 years. Since then he has been a regular member of their squad, making new advancements in his skill set. Currently, he is playing Ghada in the group. It is a very difficult instrument to learn as it takes a lot of energy to play the instrument, leaving the player completely exhausted in the end. He learned the art of playing ghada from one of his uncles. He describes that the presence of a Ghada Player increases the charm of the band and enriches the tonal quality of their live performance. He started learning to play Ghada at the age of 30 as he wishes to master as many instruments as possible and contribute to the group in best possible way. Being a multi-instrumentalist, he is often used as a replacement of the co-players in case other player is unwell or unable to play the instrument because of exhaustion or minor injuries. As there are very few Ghada players in the city, he is often invited by other groups as well to play the Ghada. Prior to learning Ghada, he used to play Khartaal in the group. He is a father of a five year old child, and has already started training him. He believes in work hard, doing riyaaz regularly and giving the best attempt always. He wishes to make further advancements in his skill set and is keen to learn more & more. He dreams about travelling across India to showcase his skills and promote Rajasthani Folk music.
As roots are the most important part of a tree, similarly Akabar khan being the root for the entire Alamkhana tree. He is fondly known as Akbar Khan Saheb Alamkhana. Akbar Khan Alamkhana is a court musician and Alamkhana head in the reign of HH Maharawal Shri Raghunath Singh Saheb and the present Maharawal HH Shri Braj Raj Singh Saheb. Akbar Khan extends his services to the Jaisalmer traditional music and inspired many young men from Manganiyar community to learn music and take music as profession and many of them now giving performances worldwide. Around 500 artists from from the villages benefited from him once he connected them to Sangeet Natak Kala Academy, Jodhpur and 300 artists connected to Dept. Of Tourism and connected 500 artists to Nehru Yuva Kendra, Jaisalmer and he connected 300 artists to the All India Radio. He played an important role in getting Artists’ Colony(for all the village artists).
Akbar khan Alamkhana has won many awards like Sangeet Prodha award by sangeet natak kala academy, Jodhpur, International Senior Citizen award by Govt. of Rajasthan, Jaipur, Giridhar Smarak Award by Royal House, Jaisalmer on Jaisalmer foundation day, Golden Fort, Jaisalmer, Siromani Award at Bombay, Maad Samman by Allah Jilahi Bai Maad Santhan, Bikaner, Guideship by the West zone cultural center, Udaipur are few of the many other prestigious awards to name for his contributions to the music and welfare activities at Jaisalmer. His dream is to take the music ahead and keep it alive forever with the welfare of the artists in the particular region. Akbar Khan Alamkhana, is working for the music and for the welfare of musician community, who are socially and economically backward. Since the time he has started working for his community, musicians and music lovers started coming to Jaisalmer from all over the world and took the Jaisalmer music at international platforms.
Sawan Khan is a 19 years old folk musician who started learning musical instruments at a very young age. He is the brother of Raees Khan & Ghulam Khan, who are also an established Folk Musicians. He primarily plays Dholak but has considerably good command over Dhol, Khartaal, Morchang, and Harmonium as well which he learnt from his elder brother Ghulam Khan. Out of all these instruments, Dholak is his favourite. He performed for the first time at the age of 8 years. Since then he has been performing in various parts of Rajasthan & North India with various different groups. He is very passionate & dedicated folk musician who rehearses for long hours during the day and evening as a routine. He believes that his only duty is to do regular Riyaaz (rehearsal). He believes that the person who does riyaaz regularly, is the least nervous while performing.
Isak khan is Dholak & Khartaal Player, who found inspiration within his family to learn various musical instruments. He is just 23 years old and plays Dhol, Harmonium as well and can sing too. At a very young age of 8 years, he started playing dholak and has been learning and performing ever since then. He is the younger brother of Folk Musician Rasool Khan. Isak khan is a multi-instrumentalist & has performed with various bands, and with time has become very comfortable in performing with new artists. He recently got associated with Champe Khan’s group and has been quite satisfied as he is getting to learn a lot from the master himself. He considers his Brother Rasool Khan as his Idol because of whom he learned this art and tries to imitate his style. He is a close relative of famous Bollywood singer Swaroop Khan & dreams of achieving fame just like him, who went on to achieve fame in Bollywood , thus giving recognition to Manganiyar community and their art form globally. Isak Khan has attended & performed several times at Rajasthan international Folk Festival which gave him a good exposure. He has played in various parts of the country and wishes to perform in abroad as well and wants to experience showcasing his skills to foreign audience. Isak has a very distinctive vision as far as folk music is concerned. He wishes for Dhol Playing competitions to happen just like singing competitions take place in large numbers throughout India, which he thinks will give a platform to young and talented Dhol Players and will encourage them to do better. He wants his children to learn traditional folk music as well as Classical Music so as to come up with an innovative style of music.
Vikram Bhatt is from Nagaur District of Rajasthan. He is 20 years old and is well versed in playing Dholak, Dhol, Khartal, Morchang, though his favourite instrument remains Dholak. He has been a part of Champe Khan’s Group for more than 2 years and has performed in all major cities of India. He has been engaged in other groups as well, so he is quite used to performing with various new artists playing different instruments in various different groups. He is cousin of Ramesh Bhatt & Sawai Bhatt who performs with Taga Ram. His mother died when he was quite young. So he joined his elders in the family in music and left studies. Apart from being a folk Musician, he also makes Puppets and does Puppet dance shows as well. He holds puppet shows successfully too just because of the fact that he can sing well. He believes that music is almost everything for him as it gives him his daily bread.
Vikram plays various folk instruments and that too in his own Style. His Technique of playing Dholak sometimes resembles that of playing tabla & he believes that he can club & perform with Western musical instruments as well. He believes that learning these many instruments came naturally to him. He also says that the rhythm comes from within when he listens to any particular song and thus he is able to play dholak along with any particular song. His Idol is Chhuge Khan ji of Rajasthan Josh, who has also performed in Various Bollywood Numbers. Vikram takes lessons from Chhuge Khan and has been working with him as well for quite some time now. He is Vikram’s inspiration and the reason why he is taking music more seriously rather than puppet business.
Mohammad Nawaz is a versatile Folk Musician who is mainly a Khartaal Player, who can also play Morchang. He is 21 years old and is playing these instruments from quite some time now. He started learning these intruments at a very early age after he got inspired from his Uncle Champe Khan. Being a student he used to practice regularly & tried his best to upkeep both his education and his journey towards being a musician. He started Performing in 2010 & since then he is a regular performer in various camps at Sam Dunes in Jaisalmer, and has travelled to almost all parts of the country to perform live shows. Currently, being an arts student, he studies English Literature apart from his Music career. Apart from his regular percussion instruments, he is also learning to play Khamaicha and is also keen on learning to sing folk songs. Music is a very important component of his life & he describes his community & neighbourhood as very supportive which encouraged him for choosing music as a career. He describes music as an endless & divine energy, which everyone should experience. He observes life very closely, and also tries to write new lyrics of his own describing the simplicity and complexity of life at the same time. He thinks about finding the ways to propagate their folk music worldwide .He considers this as his mission for himself & wishes to travel around the globe to promote their traditional instruments & folk music. He expresses his concerns about the extincting art of playing Khamaicha, Shehnaai & Saarangi, which are an identity of their folk music. He has a dream of having a group of his own and wishes to bring the extincting instruments back in tradition.
Thane Khan comes from Chattangarh Village of Jaisalmer district. He is a well versed Harmonium player and he is also a backing vocalist. He primarily sings Bhajans, Ghazals, Sufi & Qawaali. The Group leader Bagga Khan is his uncle and he has been a part of his group since the starting of his career. He was in 9th standard when his uncle started training him in traditional singing and helped him in learning the musical instruments. Ever since then, Bagga Khan has been his inspiration. Their group sings a variety of songs in various different Ragas. He has been to various foreign countries with the group to perform and found that the people of foreign countries are also getting inclined towards Indian folk Music & appreciate their art. He takes a great pride to be carrying on the legacy of their traditional Tribal Music. He wants Indian folk music to flourish in India as well as in abroad.
Thane Khan is a family oriented person. He understands the value of education and is trying his best in order to engage his child in studies unlike other parents in his community. He considers education as very important component in the development of the person’s personality. He believes that a person is considered as successful, only when he is educated and well- behaved. But being a responsible Mirasi he also wants their traditional music form to be carried on by their children and teaches them their traditional music. He explains a famous proverb about their community, that when a Mirasi Child cries, that cry itself is a Raga. His personal belief is that the songs of other subjects like love and romance shall also be promoted and people should not be ashamed when these songs are sung in public or private occasions.
Mustaq Khan belongs to Balewasi Village of Barmer District of Rajasthan. He is from Manganiyar Mirasi tribe and is a skilled Percussionist who can play Dholak & khartaal as well as other instruments like Harmonium, Veena too. He got musical instruments as heritage in his family and is trained by his family members only. He is Bagga Khan’s nephew and has been a part of his group since the beginning of his career. Apart from that he has been a part of various other groups from time to time and finds it easy while performing with the new artists as well and adjusts very swiftly. He finds himself quite comfortable in playing percussion to Marwari, Bhajans and Sufi music.
He always had a dream to travel abroad and showcase his talent. Now, after travelling to various countries like Canada, South Africa and England, he feels quite satisfied. Now, after being an established musician alongside Bagga Khan he gives full freedom to their children to pursue music as a career, but still encourages them to get basic education. He himself is an illiterate but still considers education as the utmost necessity of the today’s generation. He feels that the Rajasthani folk music need a better platform from where it can reach out more number of audience as he believes that folk music has the quality of touching the soul of the audience. He wishes to prosper more along with his group and wants to travel the whole world to showcase the magic that folk music possess. He wants to perform more of live shows as he enjoys the appreciation that he gets from the audience.
Prabhu Raam comes from Meghwal Tribe where singing Bhajans is done as a tradition since generations. This 56 year old folk singer started singing when he was around 15 years old and currently performs in Bagga Khan’s group as a backing vocalist and plays Manjira along with it. He majorly performs with Bagga Khan’s group. Besides that, he also performs with various other groups also where the size of groups varies from 4-7 members as per the requirement. He has visited various countries to perform and is highly appreciated worldwide. He considers this as the blessing that has showered upon him as a result of Bhajans. He gives due credit to Bhajans for his success and for meeting various personalities around the globe. He also says that hard work always pays off and it is the only key to success.
Prabhu Raam lives with his family where his elders and children also sing. His philosophy in life is that there is no end to the worldly matters, the more you get attached with this materialistic world, the more it tends to take you away from spiritual thoughts. He is a disciplined man and follows a tough routine. He wakes up at 4 in the morning, takes bath and commits daily rituals and sings prayers (Bhajans) to God. He does not have interest in Bollywood music or any music apart from Bhajan. Currently, his only source of income is singing Bhajans. Apart from this, he has also worked as a farmer, but used to always learn music in the evening even at that time. According to him, listening is the first step in order to learn singing. He possess good command over reproducing the Bhajans/ Ragas after listening to it just once.
Devram comes from Jhandra village of Jaisalmer district. He belongs to Meghwal tribe who sings only devotional songs. Their group plays at various auspicious occasions in their community, e.g. festivals, birth of infant, marriage, death and also at inaugurations of newly constructed buildings etc. Their main activity – Jaagran, comprises of prayers that go on throughout the night starting from evening till morning. This 44 years old folk artist is a vivid musician who plays both Tandoora and Manjira along with backing the vocals of the group leader. He began singing Lord Krishna’s bhajans (devotional Songs) when he was in 3rd standard, after which he further learnt from his grandmother & father. Now, his devotional songs consist of songs written by Kabir Das, Sheikh Fareed, Mirabai, Ravidas. His primary source of income is Jaagrans (nightlong devotional prayers). He is a Follower of Dungu Ram Ji Maharaj, but has learnt mostly by himself.
His Philosophy about their folk music is that one who sings these devotional songs disengages himself from worldly matters and it is then only, it is easy for an individual to understand that he has come to this world alone and will go back all alone and empty handed. They have this belief that you can’t commit any sin when you chant these songs in daily lives. Apart from this, he strictly emphasises on education, as he has experienced that a group of illiterate men are considered as herd of sheep. Therefore, education is very important to create a unique identity. Bhajan is a very important component of his life & in order to pass on this legacy, he teaches his children at evening after getting back to home. He is very hopeful with several non-profit organisations coming forward to promote their cultural heritage, their traditional music is being recognised worldwide. After performing in several countries as a part of Manganiyar Seduction, his only dream is to work with trained musicians and to learn more and more.
Anwar Khan is a traditional folk singer who started singing when he was 16 he was years old. He started leaning from his father and brother when he realised that the people in his village are really fond of his singing. For him his music and his voice is a gift by God and his past seven generation who have immensely contributed in the society. He wants that the upcoming generation should learn the traditional folk they sing so that they are able to carry forward this legacy to their next generation.
Shaukat Khan plays Khartal in the group. He started learning Khartal when he was 12 years old from his uncle Samandar Khan was his Ustad (teacher). He has always been dedicated towards his music and passion for it grows with every day. Since he was child, he travelled with his father for almost all his shows and from there his will to learn evolved. Therefore, from that moment till today he has contributed all of his time to music. For him his seven generations have been not only associated with music but has also been exceptionally good in it. When it comes to play and perform his favourite genres are Sufi and Bollywood. Shaukat firmly believes that their music should improvise with every generation and highlight this kind of music in the whole world. He wishes to walk on the footsteps of his father, Sawan Khan so that he could entertain the world by his music throughout his life.
Askar Khan is another young 18 years old lad in this group. He has been playing Dholak in the group mostly to all the events throughout the country. Askar started learning from his elder brother when he was merely 11 years old. He wants to work hard and go ahead in life in this field and earn name for his family by doing something in music.
Birbal Khan is a budding artist who plays Khartal exceptionally well at his age. He has been playing it with the group at various music festivals all over India since he was 14 years old. All he wants to do in his life is to teach his next generation this art of playing khartal. His dedication and hard work towards the same is commendable.
Tareef Khan is a very talented Dholak player who learnt this art from his family. He is nephew of Sawan Khan. He started learning from the very tender age of 8. His first performance was in a music festival in Pondicherry. In such a young age he has travelled all over India and have performed in prestigious festivals like NH7, Blue Frog, etc. He has travelled to various countries like Netherland, Holland, Denmark, Spain, Germany, USA, South Africa, Muscat, Jordan, Israel, etc for music festivals. Tareef has also played for ads of brands like Titan, Blackberry, etc. He has played for artists like DJ Alfredo from South Africa, Dilip Kumar in Jaipur Literature Festival, etc. For him his means of livelihood is Dholak which provides him and his family meals. With his performances he wishes to teach the upcoming generation Dholak.
Sawai is a promising harmonium player and vocalist. He got his training from his father. Just like Rayees, he can also play any kind of instrument and in any taal. He with his group has travelled all over India and have performed. He wants to represent traditional folk rajasthani music all over in the world and teach dholak to who wish to learn.
Rayees, Mangniyar by caste is a Dholak player. He has learnt playing dholak from his father. He has six brothers and all are into music, each one of them play one or the other instrument. Rayees can play any instrument and in any taal. He with his group has travelled all over India and have performed. He wants to represent traditional folk rajasthani music all over in the world and teach dholak to who wish to learn.
Ramesh plays khartal, dholak and even sings. His interest rises from his mother while she used to play dholak. Apart from all of above he is also a puppeteer and have been displaying his skill since 30 years. He is an exceptionally amazing puppet creator. He makes a living by selling puppets. He has visited several countries like Spain, Lahore, Pakistan and all over India to display his talent. He sings and play with his puppets to demonstrate stories of Amar Singh Rathore, Raja Bhoj, Prithviraj Chouhan, etc. He also focusses on teaching the next generation everything that he knows. He is a strong believer of conveying stories through music and puppetries.
Hari Ram Bhopa belong from Bhopa caste. His ancestors used to do paint and play an instrument called Ravanhatta. Hari Ram not only plays but also make and teach Ravanhatta. He has learnt this art of playing this instrument from his ancestors. Since his childhood he wanted to be a performer and lead way with the existing tradition of music. He shifted to Jaisalmer to promote traditional music and instrument. Currently he earns his living from Ravanhatta. In present day it’s only the Bhopa caste that makes this instrument. He has performed in major cities all over India. He has given music of his Ravanhatta in Bollywood movie “Tell me Oh Khuda” also. Ravanhatta has gave him high recognition in the society which considered his caste as a lower caste. Many tourists come to Jaisalmer just to learn and buy Ravanhatta from him and that is the source of income for him. He sits by the lake and sells the Ravanhatta, hand made by him. Just like his nature his music is also innocent and simple in nature. He plays such mesmerizing music with the Ravanhatta that allures tourist from all over the world.
Immamuddin is basically from Bikaner. He was born and brought up in Jaisalmer. He is a Mangniyar, who are considered so auspicious that they are invited at all the special occasions whether it is a wedding, celebrations at temples, etc. People prefer to call him Imam with love. He is an outstanding khartal player. He has learnt this art of playing khartal from his father when he used to accompany his father for shows and perform with him in hotels, etc. from the tender age of 6. He used to follow music with education simultaneously. He believes that every artist should be given a chance and should be treated fairly.
Apart from his indulgence in music he works as interpreter for foreign tourists. Imamuddin goes to all possible extent to help the artists who are illiterate and cannot complete their documents for their shows held abroad or in India. He strongly believes that for all the musicians education is a must. According to him, in order to inculcate the art of traditional music into the upcoming generations financial support is very essential with the age old practice of “guru shishya” tradition. He favors proper research work done on different traditional music and depth of it should be outlined and presented in a proper form such that upcoming generation could perceive it in the same way as it is. Imam is a happy and contended soul who dreams to give best musical education to all the future generation and promote them and give rights of musician to them.
Living in peaceful and quiet boutique stay outside of the town at Mool Sagar, Jaisalmer, Rajasthan, Taga Ram Bheel plays his favourite instrument Algoza. Taga Ram Bheel belongs from Bheel caste which is a tribal caste but they are considered Rajputs. Taga Ram who was also a shepherd learnt the art of playing Algoza when he was a kid from his father’s Algoza by stealing it in his absence. He has been playing since he was 10 years old. He has spent 30 years of his life in the jungles of Ranthambore where he used to play Algoza.
Algoza is not an easy instrument to play it’s about the game of breath. Taga Ram bought his first Algoza when he was 11 years old, he learnt himself by coordinating tunes. In 1981 he gave his first stage performance in Jaisalmer when he was 18. He has been performing every year in the famous Rajasthan desert festival since 1981. Taga Ram has given various programs for AIR, Jaisalmer. Nehru Yuva Kendra Sansthan (NYKS) too invited him to perform for them which is a matter of great honor for him. With Rajasthan Tourism he travelled to all over India and delivered amazing shows. Apart from being a professional Algoza player, he follows mining also as a profession to earn his living. He not only plays the instrument but also makes exceptionally fine Algoza with his own hands. These instruments are so well made that people from all over the world buy it from him. He also conducts workshops of Algoza and people coming from all over the world attend it with great enthusiasm. Taga Ram had gone to France in 1996 for his first international tour, since then he has been to 15 countries in Europe, Singapore, Russia, Japan, Africa, the USA for shows and workshops. He not only plays Algoza in instruments, he plays matka and flute also.
Ridhu is gives backing vocals in the group. He is multi-talented who is skilled in playing various different instruments like dholak, sarangi, Khamaicha, khartal, etc. Ridhu has been playing since he was 12 years old. He too has learnt from his father, Dapu Khan. When it comes to singing he sings traditional sufi, maand, etc and even composes his own songs in traditional rajasthani styles. His favourite tune is pahadi kalyan. Ridhu’s inspiration in this field is Dapu Khan who is his father and teacher. Ridhu wants to establish a music school for children and teach them there.
Kailash is a wonderful vocalist in this group. He was very young when he decided to leave his education and go to Pune for a starting a business. While he was in Pune to start his business, Kailash started singing in Jagratas in Temples. He dropped the idea of business and decided to go ahead with his singing as he was doing exceptionally well and was praised by everyone. He learnt music from his uncle and father with harmonium and by participating for school functions. He even self composes songs which are mostly with messages on social issues like education, environment, save girl child, etc. He sings in four languages Sufi, Punjabi, Gujrati and Rajasthani. Kailash played in Delhi for the first time in audience in IGNAC on birth anniversary of Indra Gandhi and since then there is no looking back. He too with his group has travelled to most of the major cities in India and wishes to convey moral messages through his songs throughout the world.
Jassu is 19 years of age and happens to be nephew of Dapu Khan. He has been playing since he was 10 years old. He is young lad but he is an extremely skilled dholak and khartal player. Jassu has done his learning from his uncle and father. He is a keen learner and hence wishes to go ahead in the field of music and make his family and village proud. He wants to learn more under the guidance of Dapu khan as he is still young and needs to learn a lot from him. For now he enjoys to go with his father and uncle for group performances and loves to compose new songs together. He has toured in all over India with the group.