Exposed Vocals just sat down with the Kapil Srivastava, founder of India’s largest chain of Guitar Schools, Guitarmonk
Kapil Srivastava, an Indian Solo professional Composer-Guitarist & Educator and founder of India’s largest chain of Guitar Schools – Guitarmonk.
He has performed with various celebrities as Padam Bhushan Ustad Sultan Khan and recently did a Guitar Duet with Grammy Winner and Padam Bhushan Pt. VM Bhatt. He also contributed his composing and guitar performance in Bollywood Movie – Dubai Returns (Starring Irrfan Khan). And performed Guitar for Top Record Labels of the Country including HMV Sa Re Ga Ma, T-Series and worked for Doordarshan (the official Indian Government TV).
As an Author he has written Music Articles for Government of India magazines, India Today Platform Magazine, Max Life Insurance and various other blogs.
Guinness Record & Next Milestones – He also partnered and achieved the Guinness last year for tallest pyramid cake in Surat in Sept 2016. He is also working with Tourism and Cultural ministries for various states and doing a new world record attempt as Amazing India Guitar Journey.
As an educationist, he is the first man in India to bring Bachelor Degree in Guitar in India and helped Indian Universities to establish this course. The first man to officially launch Ragas on Guitar course globally, with students in more than 20+ countries. He is fond of writing and creating lot of new compositions on Guitar. His genres of Interest are Raga, Bollywood, Irish, and Fusion on Guitar.
He also give select concerts and produce lot of guitar tunes. He is fond of writing and creating new compositions on Guitar and release them at gmtunetime.com
As a social change maker he is working on various causes from Cancer to Women Empowerment, Skill Development and Music Therapy.
Exposed Vocals: So tell us your story. Where did you grow up? What made you decide to become an artist?
I am born and brought up in Delhi, India. Guitar is my first love and I’ve been always fascinated by tone of Guitar since school days. I started performing at age of 17 and that’s how it helped me to achieve platforms and income much before other students of my age group. So it was kind of easy.
Exposed Vocals: Since everyone was a start-up once, can you give any smaller or local bands or artists looking to get gigs and airplay some tips?
My advice to start-up artist is to study opportunities and industry practice within their demography and connect with a strong promotion coach or advisor who can understand your aptitude and design a plan and strategy for you to work upon. For example if you go GOA you will get gigs very easily as its economy is tourism and there are thousands of hotels compared to a demography where there are more schools and there are more opportunities of being a music teacher rather hospitality. Artist often do mistakes of just playing and producing music one after the other rather reaching people who can help them being stable in music. There are people I know who are great music lovers but they have to leave their passion as they had no idea of what and where to go and how to be stable musically. I believe art belongs to everyone but not everybody is lucky enough to spare time to learn, perform as freely as an artist or music professional.
Exposed Vocals: Do you ever make mistakes during performances? How do you handle that?
Go prepared and do enough rehearsals. Forgetting a piece and doing some impromptu is another kind of ability. It is good to do that. Infact we Indian musicians are trained in a way that we are not depending on sheet music but ability to improvise for even 10-20-30 minutes or more on the single piece. This sort of training is more of Aural Training as compared to sight reading in west. We normally don’t perform mugged up pieces but we improvise a lot. I don’t consider going out of tempo, out of scale as musical mistakes. I consider them blunders and they happen when you go to stage without enough practice and exposure. And there is no place of such mistakes for a professional musician. For a student who is giving demo or exam, we can use such terms.
Exposed Vocals: Do you tour? Anything interesting happen on tour that you think our readers would enjoy hearing about?
In 2016 I was partner to a successful Guinness Record event in Surat, Gujarat of Tallest Cake Pyramid, where we did the largest guitar gathering. In 2017 I initiated an Amazing India World Record Guitar Journey with government of India. Where I am composing, creating a Raga on Guitar and shooting them at Heritage sites of India. I am touring whole India and covering hundred about heritage sites.
Exposed Vocals: Any planned studio upgrades? What are you working with now?
I recently did a first ever Guitar duet with Grammy Winner Pt. VM Bhatt which is ‘MERRY LOVE RAIN’. A duet of instrument MOHAN VEENA (which is improvised slide Guitar) with contemporary Guitar. It is very well there in YouTube.com/gmtunetime. I am now brining second release with him in similar fashion.
Exposed Vocals: How do you find ways to promote your music? What works best for you?
I am founder of Guitarmonk, India’s largest chain of Guitar Schools. And I connect with guitar lovers, guitar passionate people through that. It helps me to reach easily to targeted music and in-specific guitar lovers. Apart from that I reach to people via my social media pages. The former is better for me because social media is restricted and it’s now a commercial softwares for people who put their money with any quality of content.
Exposed Vocals: If you could perform anywhere and with any artists (Dead or Alive) where and who would it be with? Why?
That’s a very strange question. But I would like to do a duet with Pt. Ravi Shankar as I love his sitar pieces.
Exposed Vocals: So, what’s next? Any new upcoming projects that you want to talk about?
I am doing lot of Guitar Solos and researching, producing lot of left-out genres from India i.e. Ragas on Guitar, Bollywood. It’s fascinating to present such hidden gems on guitar. I have my own studio in Delhi where I do pieces. And I am coordinating with musicians worldwide to do duet with me. Another project I am enjoying is Amazing India and I had receive some calls from foreign countries to visit their locations. I think in an year or so this project will show its colors to people and I am all charged up for same.
Exposed Vocals: If you weren’t making music, what would you be doing?
I would be a writer, advertising specialist, novelist and I would certainly be a teacher, educationist. When I am not making music, I am doing music business. I am an entrepreneur. So I already have two different gears of thinking.
Exposed Vocals: What should fans look forward to in the next year or so?
Lot of melodies on guitar.
Exposed Vocals: Any Shout-outs?
Connect with me at my facebook.com/Kapilguitarist and youtube.com/gmtunetime to see updates of my new compositions.