Nayan Pancholi is a singer, composer and sangeet guru based in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. Born in 1964, Nayan is most acclaimed for his unusual dimension- the only maestro with superlative command on two diverse instruments, harmonium and tabla. He is best known as a melodious Gujarati singer, although he has a wider repertoire. He is known to add life to anything he sings, from soothing bhajan (divine) song to heartwarming ghajal, from peppy filmy number to dynamic folk song. His versatile vocal abilities make him a heartthrob of every generation.
Nayan is blessed to have an understanding life-partner, Dr. Preeti Pancholi, a Ph.D. in Sanskrit (Veda) who has been his backbone in this demanding career as a singer. His two children Swar and Sangati have been his lifeline. Nayan has dedicatedly put his heart and soul to train his students at “Swar Sangati Academy”. The students not only feel proud to be trained by a guru who is veteran in music; but also have a strong emotional bond with their guru.
Nayan Pancholi has been passionate about music since his early years. As a small child, he picked up first lessons from his father Shri Laxmikant Pancholi popularly known as ‘Amug Bhagat’ who used to sing and compose Gujarati divine songs. Nayan used to hum the same songs with him and started playing tabla while he was too young.
Nayan’s potential for music was discovered by his parents and music school teacher, who encouraged him to take up formal harmonium training while he was still in 7th standard. His mother Mrs. Padmavati L. Pancholi has been a strong support since his early days.
Nayan acquired tabla training from Pandit Divyangbhai Vakil, disciple of Shri Alla Rakha Khan Saheb – father of Zakir Hussain and Sudhir Kumar Saxena. Divyangbhai discovered Nayan’s gifted ability to sing. It is since then, he has never looked back in his musical odyssey of around 33 years.
Carrying on the tradition of guru-shishya-parampara that extends back countless millennia, Nayan learnt sugam sangeet (Light Indian music) from Shri Rasbihari Desai and classical music from Shri Krishnakant Parikh, who is a disciple of Hon. Pandit Jasraj. His strong foundations in music training started paying off as he received numerous awards at college level. He rose to popularity after his college youth festival performance where his melodious voice made the masses sit up and notice his talent.
Nayan has also been fortunate to be trained for voice culture under Prof. Sudhir Khandekar, a well known violinist and music director. The ability to mesmerize the audience with his bhajans (devotional songs) comes to Nayan as a social heritage, yet, he has learnt the magic from the world renowned Shri Anup Jalota.
- In 1984, Nayan was felicitated by his college for being a unique and promising singer. His determination to take up music professionally led him to take up a tour to perform in U.S. immediately after he passed out of college.On a similar tour to perform in USA, he became an accident victim of the known hijack of Pan Am'73 jetliner in 1986.
- Having broadcast his first radio program at the age of 13, his prodigious talent was carefully nurtured by his great father with a highly restrained exposure. However, it was since the age of 20, in 1984, that his music took him to perform in USA and then he had no looking back.
- In 1995, he accompanied the musical genius of Gujarat, the legendary Shri Purushottam Upadhyay to perform at a program in USA.
- Years 1984 to current saw him represent India at some of the most prestigious international music festivals and programs across 20 states of USA, UK, East Africa,Europe and Italy with programs in France,Italy,Armenia, Istanbul, Morocco, Algeria with rave reviews in international dailies.
- In 1997, Nayan presented renditions of exquisite Gujarati poetry at his light music program at the Gujarati Literary Academy of USA.
- For three years, 2008-2011, Nayan ran Jalota Academy of music to train the students in voice culture. This academy was inaugurated and governed by the legendary bhajan samrat of India, Shri Anup Jalota. Since then he has continued training around 300 students at Swar Sangati Academy. He also teaches students at monthly sessions in local clubs like The Orient Club.
- Nayan has touched the heart of many listeners through his music, at his more than 500 solo stage shows and 300 concerts. Nayan has co-performed folk music (Lok sangeet) with Praful Dave, a veteran name in the folk and the Gujarati Cinema. He has accompanied and learned from many stalwarts of music industry like Purushottam Upadhyay, Anup Jalota, Asit Desai, Ahmed Hussain, Mohammed Hussain, Lakshmi Shankarji, among many others.
- In March 2012, Nayan enchanted his audiences in UK when he performed at a government sponsored program in Glouster Shire, UK.
- Nayan has been performing all over the world and captivating audience with his amicable personality, ability to connect instantly and above all his melodic voice. Nayan has his unique musical signature which he carries to his concerts since he began globe-trotting in 1984 and always surprises his range of multi-cultured audience.He has led the torch of Indian music to world over and will continue to do so..
Miles to go and promises to keep…
Nayan is known for his versatile range of bhajans to folk to Indian light music. He has also been performing in Vibrant Gujarat for the past 5 years and performed solo for Doordarshan programs. He has been awarded Begum Akhtar award and Gujarati Sugam Sangeet award in 2005, for his achievements in singing. His commercial programs have been a great hit. Nayan has to his credit several CD albums on noted international labels besides collaboration with most acknowledged musicians of the industry.
Nayan has recorded several private albums and participated in numerous solo concerts in India and abroad. He continues to spread the Indian music globally not only with his performances but also with his unmatched creative compositions. Listening to him always gives one a blissful feeling be it in his program or his recorded CDs.
- Gujarat Rajya Sangeet Natak Academy has conferred Nayan with Gaurav Puraskar for his contributions in Music for the year 2012-13. A memorable moment in Nayan’s performing career came in 1980, when he was warmly appreciated for his performance & he won first prize in "Ellisbridge Jaycees"
- Nayan is a 1984 receipt of the achievement award from ABVP
- Nayan was awarded the Begum Akhtar award in 1987 as best ghazal singer
- Nayan has been a co-singer with Anup Jalota in various albums released by T-Rax Co., T-Series.
- Nayan has shared stage with such legends as Pt. Ravi Shankar, Purushottam Upadhyay, Anup Jalota, Asit Desai, Ahmed Hussain, Mohammed Hussain, Lakshmi Shankarji besides a whole galaxy of stars…among others.