Veteran Khanjira artist Vid H P Ramachar passed away this morning (23 June 2006) in Bangalore, after suffering a massive heart attack.
Having chosen music as life at the early age of seven, he had the fortune of accompanying the doyens of music as well as the young stars. He was a staff artiste of AIR, Bangalore. Performances in India and abroad brought him fame with his innovative approach, imagination and undying enthusiasm that remained unaffected by age. He had also participated in percussion ensembles alongside the likes of Zakir Hussain and Vellore Ramabhadran. Ramachar also directed a unique percussion ensemble of women percussionists called – ‘Mahila Laya Madhuri’.
He was a recipient of a number of awards and honours, some of which are: Rajyotsava award of Government of Karnataka, ‘Laya Kala Nipuna’ and ‘K Puttu Rao Memorial Palghat Mani Award’ of Percussive Arts Centre, ‘Sangeetha Kalaratna’ of Bangalore Gayana Samaja.
Rasikas would recall that Ramachar instituted the “H Puttachar Memorial Award”(in memory of his father) given by Percussive Arts Center every year to a young versatile musician, a rare gesture of a senior artiste instituting an award for an artiste.
Come July, Ramachar would have been 82. His music heritage is carried forward by his daughter, the popular young percussionist – Latha Ramachar.
The Ramachar family's address is - 259, 3rd Main, 7th Cross, Srinivasa Nagar, Bangalore - 50
Phs; 91- 080 - 26797430 / 22255076
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Message from R. Krishnan
I note with great regret the passing away of Sri. Ramachar. In this we have lost one of the greatest of our times. He was a very humble and simple man despite his stature. I pray for his soul to rest in Peace. I sincerely hope that his daughter Smt. Latha Ramachar would carry on with the tradition and bring joy to rasikas.
Message from T. N. Krishnan
I am extremely sad to know about the sudden demise of my good friend and colleague H P Ramachar the well known, versatile Kanjeera Maestro. It is still fresh in my memory. the many concerts we had played together with the Stalwarts like Ariyakudi, Chembai, Maharajapuram, Semmangudi, GNB, Madurai Mani Iyer. Alathur Bros, Mali and others. Mr Ramachar was a very nice person and sincere friend. His contributon to the growth of music in general and percussive arts in particular is quite phenominal.
My association with him on and off the concert platform dates back to more than six decades. His passing away is a great loss not only to the music world, but personally also. I am sure his tradition will be looked after and kept alive by his talented daughter Smt Latha.
My sincere condolences to all the family members.
T N Krishnan
H.P.Ramachar was an outstanding artiste on Kanjira. He had mastered all the
nuances of Kanjira playing and was a pillar of support to the main artiste
during the concerts. He was quite unassuming and a picture of humility.
I have met him during Akashvani Sangeeth Sammelan concerts at Nagpur and
Kolkata in the nineties. Surely it is an irreparable loss for the field of
B. R. Kumar,
Station Manager, Gyan Vani FM Educational Radio Network of India,
Indira Gandhi National Open University, Chennai-113