First Ever Dholak & Dhantal Hall of Fame 2021

On May 30th 2021 (Indian Arrival Day in Trinidad & Tobago), Nermal MASSIVE GOSEIN presented the FIRST EVER DHOLAK AND DHANTAL HALL OF FAME.

The 8 Inductees were:

  1. Rasheed Mohammed
  2. Saboo Ramberath
  3. Vedath Mootoor
  4. Charlie Soogrim
  5. Roger Sookraj
  6. Bharat Boochoon
  7. Soerin Ramkhelawan
  8. Jainarine “Sou” Balgobin

The event was hosted by Veejai Ramkissoon.



Nermal Gosein popularly known as Nermal Massive Gosein.

Massive Gosine is the only artiste to have gone down in T&T’s history by making sixteen consecutive days of headline news with his mega hit entitled “Rowlee Mudda Count”. Known more for his riveting commentary in song, he is a true champion of the people. He has made sterling contributions to culture in Trinidad and Tobago and for over 15 years had his own ‘calypso and chutney’ tent in Couva for Carnival celebrations.

Today we are pleased to present 8 awards of recognition under the banner Nermal Massive Gosein Global Dholak and Dhantal Hall of Fame Awards.

Roger Sookraj

Roger Sookraj who has been residing in Valley Stream, New York for many years began his musical journey at the age of 9. His first guru was his father dad, Rodan Sookraj. He was also trained in classical drumming by Raymond Sampat. Roger also studied east Indian classical music under the tutelage of Ustad Anthony Rameasar and was vocally trained by Roopchand Rambharat.

Roger played for some great international musicians like: Hari Om Sharan, Anup Jalota, Mehdi Hassan, Pundit Ajay Jha, and world renowned Babla & Kanchan. He was also fortunate to accompany, on dolak, some of Trinidad’s and Guyana’s greatest musicians like: Sundar Popo, Terry Garaj, the late Sonny Man, Nermal Massive Gosein, Dubraj Persad, Rooplal Girdharie, Solo Girdharie and the entire Yankaran family.

He is the leader and founder of Shivrajah Music, established in 2014 and also the Shivrajah’s Music Academy which has produced many star-worthy students that are following in his footsteps.

Jainarine Balgobin

Jainarine Balgobin better known as Suee hails from Kitty, Georgetown, Guyana. He is the last child of Mr. & Mrs. Jaikarran, his father is well known as Balgobin Kawall, and the brother of popular Bollywood singer, Dhanraj Balgobin aka Jumping Jack.
Suee’s career as a musician began at the age of 15. As a drummer and percussionist he performed with the Ramanand Orchestra, his father’s band, at Radio Demerara. Suee was blessed to provide his talent as dholak/tabla/congas/acoustic drum player in temples, private pujas, and weddings.
Today, Suee has his own group the Divya Sangeet Musical Group, and continues to provide live music for pujas, weddings, and other activities.

Soerin Ramkhelawan from Holland

Soerin founded the SR-MUSIC ACADEMY and also the band SR-MUSIC in Holland Keep Indian culture, language and music alive.
He has played for singers such as hare om sharan , Anup Jalota ,Yankaran brothers, Taran Persad, Ramdhanie Sharma, Solo Ghirdarie, Lilly Ramcharan, Hannif Mohammed, Sam Boodram, Sohan, Jameer Hosien and Yusuf khan.

Bharath Boochoon

Shri Bharath Boochoon was born and raised in the Lagoon District of La Fortune Woodland, South Trinidad. At the age of 9 he asked his father, Mr. Boochoon Jagmohan (known as The King of Dhantal) to teach him how to sing and play the dholak.

Bharath was a regular on Radio and TV and was a finalist on Mastana Bahar having placed near the top in 1978.

He has traveled and played extensively and as a Florida resident he has played for the visiting pundits from Trinidad and also Swamis from India including Saint Keshvadas, Swami Chidanandaji, Swami Shudh Vicharananda, the, the Suni Sangeet Orchestra, The Stars Indian Orchestra, Acme Dile-Na Dan and The FHO Sangeet. He also performed the task of the MC for many of these bands. He also hosted a Radio program called” Chutney Explosion “on WHSR 980am from 1996-98.

Mr. Boochoon continues to be involved in all aspects of Hindu Religion and Indian Culture, both as a teacher, volunteer, and a practioner. His 45 plus years of service in this field laid the foundation, both in Trinidad and Florida where the community is benefiting. That is the purpose of his efforts, where everyone can benefit through the medium of education, practice and participation. All of his services to Non-Profit groups are free.

Saboo Ramberath

Born in 1955 Saboo and resides at Upper 7th ave Malick Barataria. He played for Sitara hind, B.W.I.A., Jit Samaroo, Naya Zamana, Indian Art Orchestra, Dil E nadan, Solo Sangeet Orchestra, Mala Sangeet Orchestra.

Rasheed Mohammed

Born at union road ,four roads, Diego Martin on the 10th of may 1948.Moved to Mercer Road Diego Martin in 1960. Moved to Thompson Road Palmiste, Longdenville in 1985.Migrated to New Jersey ,US in1996.Now resides at Vallejo,California US. [2]left Diego Martin Secondary School in1967 with 6 ‘O’level passes and started work at Ministry of Agriculture as cartographer .joined UWI [now CARDI] in 1970.I worked there until 1987 when I was retrenched.Went in the Maxi Taxi business before leaving for the US.I am presently retired. [3]Started playing dhantal at around 10 yrs old at home for my dad and my elder brother[Yussuff aka sonyboy].Met Sohan Dilip Surujdeo at UWI and we started following classical singing countrywide.Became friends with Sharm Yankaran and James Ramdass and played for them for many years.I was a member of the Disney Ramayan group the Radha Krishna Sharma group and also a group in diego led by the legendary classical singer mr Sookdeo .Sookraj. M McCoon[corky]and my brother,were the drummers for the last two groups. Together with Surujdeo,latchman Persad and others promoted this artform through the Indian Classical Singers and Drummers association.I always try to give exposure to the youths of the day.some of them are the stars today dubraj and ravi persad.Rohan and indernil surujdeo,Ramesh basdeo,ram dalphus and others.I still occasionally assists artiste.[5]I survived cancer of the larynx which i got some 13yrs ago.playing this type of music and listening to it is a hobby for me and I still get a lot of joy from playing the Dhantal.

Jewan Charlie Soogrim

Born on 30th April, 1968, fifty three year old Jewan Charlie Soogrim of Rickson Street, El Dorado is today one of the most popular and highly respected musicians in the Caribbean.

At twenty-two years old, Charlie Soogrim was appointed by his father Motilal and uncle Suresh Soogrim to become the musical director and leader of the popular Beena Sangeet Orchestra, now known as The Charlie’s Beena Sangeet Orchestra.

During his illustrious career, Charlie Soogrim has accompanied countless local stars including the late Anand Yankaran, Heeralal Rampartap, Rasika Dindial, Rooplal Girdharry and the late Boyie Basdeo. Charlie has also distinguished himself in the music industry by playing music for several international superstars including Anup Jalota, Kries Ramkhellawan, Anuradha Powdhal and Kumar Sanu.

Jewan Charlie Soogrim’s musical genius has also given him the opportunity to tour many international destinations including Canada, Guyana, New York City, Miami, St. Thomas, Suriname and Guadeloupe. In July 2011 Charlie Soogrim also had the golden opportunity to tour India with The Sai Baba Organisation.

It gives me immense pleasure to inform on the induction of Mr Jewan Charlie Soogrim into the Global Dholak and Dhantal Hall of Fame.

Vedath Mootoor

Originally from Tunapuna, East Trinidad, Vedath was born to parents heavily involved in the reading of the Ramayana. His father was also a harmonium player. He started his dholak playing career in 1970.

Vedath Mootoor is a founding member of the original Triveni Indian Orchestra and was popularly known as the local ‘babla’. After migrating to Canada he was a founding member of the Canadian National Indian Orchestra. He is also a founding member of the St Johns Trace United Tassa Group of Fyzabad and has competed in the Mastana Bahar and Indian Cultural Pageant competitions in Trinidad.
Now residing in Florida, Vedath has played for many singers and pandits.


  • Mr Khayal Mohammed and the Mastana Bahar Team
  • Mr Nal Ramsingh and Ramsinghs Sports World
  • Mahantji Dr Balliram Chadee and the Hanuman Mission
  • Dr Vijay Ramlal Rai
  • The National Chutney Foundation of Trinidad and Tobago
  • The National Tassa Association of Trinidad and Tobago
  • The Trinidad and Tobago Copyright Organization
  • National Cultural Promotions

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