Born on 1 April 1915 in Saidpur village in Kapurthala state in Punjab, Shri Gurcharan Singh Ragi initially
received his training in the Gurbani Kirtan from his father Bhai Jawala Singh. Later, he was trained by
other eminent teachers including Baba Sardha Singh, Bhai Batan Singh, Nathu Ram, Bhai Sohala Singh,
and Bhai Arjan Singh.
Belonging to a traditional family of ragis of the Sikh tradition, Shri Gurcharan Singh Ragi is conversant with all the ragas, and variant forms of the Gurbani kirtan such as the chant, varaan, padtal and dhrupad. He has rendered a great service to musical learning by painstakingly putting together more than five hundred notations of the original shabad-reets or compositions dating back to the time of the Sikh gurus. This work has been prepared together with his brother Bhai Avtar Singh Ragi.
Besides Gurbani Sangeet: Pracheen Reet Ratnavali published so far in two volumes by Punjabi University, Patiala, Shri Gurcharan Singh has produced several other books on music. A senior Fellow of Punjabi University, he has trained many students in music, and also attended seminars on music both in India and abroad.
Shri Gurcharan Singh has been honoured by several institutions for his service to Indian music. These honours include the Lifetime Achievement Award of the Baba Harballabh Sangeet Mahasabha in Jalandhar, and the Punjab Sangeet Natak Akademi Award. He has also received the Punjabi Academy Award, the title of Shiromani Ragi, and the Shiromani Sahitkar title conferred by the Punjab Languages Department.
Shri Gurcharan Singh Ragi is elected Tagore Fellow of Sangeet Natak Akademi for his contribution to Indian music.