The Good Ole Days in Karachi ~ by Iqbal Kamdar

Iqbal Kamdar

I am a permanent resident of Karachi and come from a Memon/Gujrati family.  My father emigrated from Bombay during the partition and I was the first Memon who learnt the guitar from one of the most brilliant, coperative, cool, master minded guitarist Mr. Egan (Iggy) Fernandes (RIP).  ~ contd. below

Our band performing ‘live’ for the children of Darul Sukoon

However after completion, I could not join any musical band due to the shift duties at the airline where I was working, but the love for music has been with me throughout.

During the time of live entertainment I simply loved watching  the Black Jacks and can distinctly remember the following:

Vocalist Mr. Frances Sebastian RIP was a great singer, having a clean and powerful voice, great singing talent which you could tell came from regular practice, dedication and enthusiasm.  His songs TAKE THE RIBBON FROM MY HAIR, MORE THAN I CAN SAY, WONDERFUL TONIGHT, DOWN UNDER and MY ENDLESS LOVE were marvelously done and I must confess even better than the original tracks.

How beautifully he came down from high to low pitch in MY ENDLESS LOVE, his emotional song SAVE YOUR LOVE MY DARLING and using some extra words (his own original improvisation) in the middle of the song FOOT LOOSE were unbelievable.

Mr. Bosco D’Souza is a brilliant key board player,  I remember he used to play so well in WONDERFUL TONIGHT, MY ENDLESS LOVE, GRAND MARCH and beginning and last portion of the song ABRA CADABRA (Does anyone remember that song!)  

Lead Guitarist played so well in the beginning and last portion of the song MORE THAN I CAN SAY, similarly in the beginning portion of the song FRANKIE with the drummer who used ‘one’ piece of drum only for that piece.

Mr. Roland Trinidad (late) was qualified, talented and a very cooperative drummer.   He played so well in RED RED WINE specially at the end of the song he played with one piece of drum I believe is called snare was absolutely marvelous.  Such amazing talent, dedication and love for music was at the heart of each musician.

Saxophonist Mr. Sabby Patrick played so well in THE HEAT IS ON, SINGING IN THE DARK but IN DON BUSTLE ( I AM AFRAID FROM GHOST ) he played in a different style and came in competition with the drummer three times in the middle of the song and fourth time went back to the original track.  Amazing improvisation!

Bass Guitarist Mr. Glenn Boyle played so well in ILLUSION (which was a big hit in those days) and his back ground singing to support the vocalist in GRAND MARCH and IN MY ENDLESS LOVE are found very interesting.

For me a simple Memon boy growing up in Karachi at that time surrounded by music, live entertainment was such a memorable experience.  I have played with some fine musicians and  thought I’d share my memories with Legendary Musicians of Karachi.

Thank you so much,

Iqbal Kamdar

At the same performance in Darul Sukoon ~ singing to the children



Bosco D’souza ~ Thanks for bringing back old memories!!!!

Kevin Mendonca Iqbal that is a good discreption of the band members

Lynette Dias Gouveia Having received so many wonderful emails from Mr. Iqbal Kamdar.   He is really special and does have a great recollection of the live bands/musicians of Karachi.   Iqbal also played briefly with Kevin Sebastian, Cajetan Lobo and Gerald, the musicians from the band ‘Black Rose’.

Kevin Mendonca Yes Now that you mentioned it Lyn, I remember Iqbal used to play on and off with the guys, wow that jogs my memory, any news about Arif Barocha, Eric Balo who were musicians of their time, mid 70-80’s

Rozario Fernandes wow


4 thoughts on “The Good Ole Days in Karachi ~ by Iqbal Kamdar

  1. Thanks Iqbal for your beautiful write up. What a privilege to have learnt to play the guitar from one of the best: the maestro Mr. Egan Fernandes. Thank you for sharing all your experiences with all these wonderful musicians of yesteryear. KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK!

  2. I remember Iqbal very well he would always make time to play for sister Gertrude and the kids many times he would ask us to join him from village restaurant . He was always there for the kids no matter how busy he was every weekend he would be there that is the kind of person he is . THANK YOU MR- IQBAL Hi Kevin As for Arif barocha he is still in Karachi and is still teaching music in Yamaha. From ANGELO D’CRUZ

  3. Thanks Iqbal for those kind words, you do have a good memory. The only mistake was that “Save your love” was actually sung by me, the only one song I ever got to sing!!!!

  4. Great memories Iqbal,

    Thanks for bringing music to the kids of |Darul Sukun. Your family would also
    come out and bring biryani for the home. Inspite of your shift work you found
    time to come out and play for the children. God Bless you! Remember we
    (you, me and Joel) were also trying to form a little band once. You also brought
    your guitar/s over for Saturday mass at the Clemonds home in Nursery. Those
    were the days!! Thanks, wayne

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