Sunday, August 10, 2008

Chandrashekhar Khare: Lost Gem Found

Yesterday was a day of pleasant surprises, thanks to the google chat link on our Blog. I got to chat with a couple of harmonica lovers. One was Chandrashekhar Khare. I had heard so much about him from Apoorva Bhatt and Tapan Bhatt. We had a brief exchange over the chat window and, then suddenly the Internet connection was lost, before I could ask for his contact details. However, I was filled with joy on receiving an email from him today. I was overwhelmed. I called him up to seek his permission to put up his email on the blog. He was kind to have allowed me. Here it is:

Dear Nachiketa ji,

It was a pleasure talking to you on chat yesterday. I was thrilled to no extents.

I am actually preparing a few song recordings on my harmonica with the help of my mobile phone. However,due to lack of practice of years, I am unable to get the kind of finish that I expect from myself. So it sounds very amateurish.Hence I am taking some more time to send my recordings. Request you to bear with me. Please do not think that I am acting pricey or something ( just in case you felt this way). I am a learner of this fine art which is a gift of Maa Saraswati to all of us.
I feel really happy the way Blogspot page for the Harmonica Club of Gujarat is shaping up. It is only and only because of your rich experience in Journalism that it has the fine look that we see. The presentation of blog page is really nice and the language is great. It is like going through articles from any good national level newspaper. With a person like you around, it has to be that way !! Hats off to you !!
I was introduced to Apurva Bhai sometime in 1994-95 during my stay at Baroda. In fact I used to go to meet Late Shri Sarag Fadnis, himself a great harmonica player, where I first got to meet Apurva Bhai. Till then I used to play a chinese Chromatic instrument called "Lark".Then I got my first Super Chromonica through Shri Fadnis. I still play the same along with my 64X chromonica which I purchased much later in year 2000/2001. It was only this year that I came to know about the sad demise of Shri Fadnis that happened a few years back. I remember that Shri Fadnis had got a few recordings done in a professional studio in Baroda. In case those are still available with his family, I suggest they can also be put in the blog as a tribute.Apurva Bhai may be able help in this regards as they both stayed in the same area in Baroda.

Apurva Bhai, as you know is a brilliant artiste. I became an instant fan upon meeting him. More importantly, he broke one myth that I believed in. I used to think that Gujaratis can not be good musicians. For them only money is music. But he shattered that myth and I now believe that Gujaratis can do whatever they set their eyes on !!!!

Mr Prabhakar Bhatt Bhatt was in same company ( DDE-ORG Systems) in Baroda where I used to work earlier. For an year or so we didn't know each other. But through a common colleague, we got introduced to each other and our mutual interest in harmonica. He was the one who first took me to Shri Sarang Fadnis. And after that for the entire stay of mine in Baroda, I was in regular touch with Apurva Bhai, Sarang ji and Prabhakar ji. In October 1995, I left Baroda for a new job in Ahmedabad. Those were not the days of e-mail and mobile. So after some days, I lost touch with all of them and actually with my instrument also. Apurva bhai and I had a brief communication on letters for about an year. But then everything was lost for a long gap of about 12-13 years.

This year beginning ( perhaps) feb/March, I happened become member of a google group of my Baroda company where I saw the profile of Shri Prabhakar Bhatt Bhatt. I immediately sent him an e-mail. That is where everything started again. I got the number of Apurva Bhai from him. And Apurva Bhai,being the large hearted man that he is, immediately introduced me to countless other harmonica players almost within a week's time and still going on .... But again, destiny took a different turn and I landed in Bangalore on transfer in my present company i.e. Wipro. Only this time, I want to ensure that I never again lose touch with the wonderful people I have met !!
I was trying hard to meet Mr Tapan Bhatt before leaving Ahmedabad. But somehow it did not happen.I will not miss second chance whenever I get it !! I used to in Jodhpur Gam area since 1999 and used to go to Vastrapur from the same road where he stays. What a pity I got introduced to him so late !!
I think I will be testing your patience of reading in case I go on writing the mail beyond this point. So I will give it a break here itself and preserve something for my next mail !!
Warm regards
Chandrashekhar Khare
Project Manager - SI
HP: +91 9741498019

1 comment:

Tapan Bhatt said...

Khare saab,
Whatever you have written about Apoorvabhai is absolutely right.
He is the most respected name in the field of Harmonicas and why should'n it be ?
He keeps on taking tests over the phone and helps others to improve the style of playing.
He has talked to me about you and your talent.
I have many videos , just waiting his permission to upload.
As you know he does not want to come in public but believe me very soon i will convince him and get the permission.
Pl be in touch.
Tapan Bhatt