Pravin Godkhindi is 1st Indian Flautist to perform on the 8 Feet contrabass flute. He is a top ranking artiste in Hindustani Bansuri, by Akashvani (AIR). He is the 1st Indian to represent Bansuri at the World Flute Festival held at Mendoza Argentina. Pravin received National Awards for Films Beru & Vimukthi. He became so famous as he became Brand Ambassador for AKG Microphones.
Pravin started toying with a small flute at the age of 3 years. His first public performance was at the age of 6. His first guru is his father Pandit Venkatesh Godkhindi & later on he learnt from Vidwan Anoor Ananth Krishna Sharma. He got titles Surmani, Naada-Nidhi, Sur Samrat, Kalapraveena, Aryabhatta, Aasthana Sangeet Vidwan from Udupi Sri Krishna math. He has performed with Eminent Musicians like Ustad Zakir Hussain, Dr. Balmurali Krishna, Pt. Vishwa Mohan Bhatt, Dr. Kadri Gopinath, Sivamani and many more.
The Godkhindis, Pt Venkatesh, Pravin and Shadaj are probably the first family which has three generations playing the Bansuri- bamboo flute together on the stage. Pandit Venkatesh Godkhindi, the senior most flautist of Karnataka, aged 69, has been performing for the past 40 years and is the guru for his son Suramani Pravin Godkhindi. Pravin, aged 36 yrs, happens to be one of the most sought after and prolific flautists of the country. The youngest of the three, Master Shadaj Godkhindi, aged 8 yrs, is Pravins son. He made his stage debut at the tender age of 3 ½ years. He is fortunate to be trained by his grandfather and father. They are accompanied on the tabla by Kiran Godkhindi, elder brother of Pravin, thus making it a family affair all the way.
They have performed all over the state of Karnataka last year for a wonderful response. Some major concerts where they have performed are Mangalore, Shimoga, Hubli, Manipal and Bangalore. They also recently performed for the Ramakrishna Ashrama in Bangalore. They have released a DVD ‘Swar Sagar’ which is a live recording of a great concert held in Mangalores T M A Pai auditorium. In December 2008 they were invited for a grand performance by the Qatar Kannada Koota as part of their Vishwa Kannada Sammelan.
The presentation of the concert is so unique that the music connoisseur loves the combination of the three generations, playing in tandem trying to outdo each other in a playful jest and always complimenting each other. In short, the first 3 generations of flautists of India, are indeed a treat to watch as well as hear.
Pravin Godkhindi started a band Krishna – The Fusion Band. As the name itself suggests, this fusion band is focused around the magnificent instrument called the bansuri or the bamboo flute. It is a beautiful amalgamation of various genres of music that are prevalent in the country and hence the name. It has variety ranging from the classical ragas to rock, from the folklore to jazz, from carnatic to bollywood etc which makes it unique and probably the only band which can cater to a wide range of music lovers. What is most attractive is the fact that Pravin Godkhindi, the founder and the lead bansuri artiste of the band never compromises with the aesthetic appeal of the basic Indian ragas around which all the build-up of the concert happens. All the aspects of classical Hindustani style of renditions are kept intact while mixing different elements during the presentation of different numbers.
Pravin Godkhindi picks up a raga and unfolds the beauty of the raga in the traditional aalaap with the wonderful ambient backing of the keyboards and the guitars. Gradually he moves onto a rhythmic aalaap called JOD wherein the strumming of the rhythm guitar, the bass guitar and the subtle accompaniment of the western drums, adds colour to the rhythmic expressions of Pravins flute. And when they conclude the improvisations in a crescendo through the JHALA, the audience is spellbound and ecstatic. After this when Pravin begins with a traditional classical composition with the tabla as the main accompaniment, everyone is reminded of the rich tradition of our classical music. Gradually the rhythmic Taans lead to a jazz beat on the drums and the western environment is captured with some brisk improvisations in the typical jazz style, quite unheard in the usual bansuri concerts. At this juncture the band takes turns in solos and after each solo Pravin picks up different melodious Hindi film songs based on the same raga adding to the delight of the listeners. For the general music lover some unknown facts hitherto come to light when Pravin picks up popular film songs, from the 60s till date, as a medley. The vast similarity in the usage of the same musical notes by different composers during different ages would definitely catch the audience by surprise and the way they are interspersed in the entire composition makes it quite unbelievable. A memorable rendition of one single raga!