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|Music of Pakistan|
|Media and performance|
|Music awards|| Hum Awards |
Lux Style Awards
Pakistan Media Awards
ARY Film Awards
|Music charts||Patari Haftanama|
|Music festivals|| All Pakistan Music Conference |
Lahore Music Meet
Lok Virsa Mela
|Nationalistic and patriotic songs|
|National anthem||Qaumi Taranah|
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The Music of Pakistan (Urdu : پاکستان کی موسیقی) includes diverse elements ranging from music from various parts of South Asia as well as Central Asian, Middle Eastern, and modern-day Western popular music influences. With these multiple influences, a distinctive Pakistani sound has emerged.
The music of Central Asia is as vast and unique as the many cultures and peoples who inhabit the region. Principal instrument types are two- or three-stringed lutes, the necks either fretted or fretless; fiddles made of horsehair; flutes, mostly open at both ends and either end-blown or side-blown; and jew harps, mostly metal. Percussion instruments include frame drums, tambourines, and kettledrums. Instrumental polyphony is achieved primarily by lutes and fiddles.
Popular music is music with wide appeal that is typically distributed to large audiences through the music industry. These forms and styles can be enjoyed and performed by people with little or no musical training. It stands in contrast to both art music and traditional or "folk" music. Art music was historically disseminated through the performances of written music, although since the beginning of the recording industry, it is also disseminated through recordings. Traditional music forms such as early blues songs or hymns were passed along orally, or to smaller, local audiences.
Classical music of Pakistan is based on the traditional music of South Asia which was patronized by various empires that ruled the region and gave birth to several genres of classic music including the Klasik and Hindustani classical music. The classical music of Pakistan has two main principles, ‘sur’ (musical note) and ‘lai’ (rhythm). The systematic organization of musical notes into a scale is known as a raag. The arrangement of rhythm (lai) in a cycle is known as taal. Improvisation plays a major role during a performance.
Hindustani classical music is the traditional music of northern regions of the Indian subcontinent. It may also be called North Indian classical music or Śāstriya Saṅgīt. Its origins date from the 12th century CE, when it diverged from Carnatic music, the classical tradition of southern regions of the Indian subcontinent.
A Tala, sometimes spelled Taal or Tal, literally means a "clap, tapping one's hand on one's arm, a musical measure". It is the term used in Indian classical music to refer to musical meter, that is any rhythmic beat or strike that measures musical time. The measure is typically established by hand clapping, waving, touching fingers on thigh or the other hand, verbally, striking of small cymbals, or a percussion instrument in the Indian subcontinental traditions. Along with raga which forms the fabric of a melodic structure, the tala forms the life cycle and thereby constitutes one of the two foundational elements of Indian music.
There are many families from gharanas of classical music who inherited the music from their forefathers and are still performing. Some famous gharanas are: Qwaal Bacha gharana (Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and Rahat Fateh Ali Khan belong to this gharana), and Patiala Gharana (Shafaqat Amanat Ali Khan belongs to this gharana).Ustad Ghulam Farid Nizami a prominent sitar player and a Sufi singer belongs to the Senia Gharana. Number of other gharanas are present in Pakistan which serve classical music. Some classical musicians like Ustad Badar uz Zaman do not belong to any famous gharana but has served classical music enormously. The legendary sitar player Mohammad Sharif Khan Poonchhwaley belongs to Poonch gharana of sitar. Ustad Rais Khan is another prominent sitar player of Pakistan.
In Hindustani music, a gharānā is a system of social organization in the Indian subcontinent, linking musicians or dancers by lineage or apprenticeship, and by adherence to a particular musical style. A gharana also indicates a comprehensive musicological ideology. This ideology sometimes changes substantially from one gharana to another.
Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, born Pervez Fateh Ali Khan, was a Pakistani vocalist and musician, primarily a singer of Qawwali, a form of Sufi Islamic devotional music. Widely considered one of the greatest voices ever recorded, he possessed an extraordinary range of vocal abilities and could perform at a high level of intensity for several hours. He belonged to the Patiala gharana extending the 600-year old Qawwali tradition of his family, Khan is widely credited with introducing Qawwali music to international audiences. He is popularly known as "sultan-e-Qawwali", meaning "The King of Kings of Qawwali".
Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, is a Pakistani musician, primarily of Qawwali, a devotional music of the Muslim Sufis. He is the nephew of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and son of Farrukh Fateh Ali Khan and also the grandson of Qawwali singer Fateh Ali Khan. In addition to Qawwali, he also performs ghazals and other light music. He is also popular as a playback singer in Bollywood and the Pakistan film industry.
Shaukat Hussain, Tari Khan and Tafo Khan have been exponents of classical tabla playing from Pakistan. Talib Hussain was one of the last remaining pakhawaj players of Pakistan and was a recognized practitioner of the Punjab gharana style of drum-type instruments.
Abdul Sattar Khan popularly known as Tari Khan is a Pakistani tabla player and vocalist. Tari Khan hails from the Punjab gharana and is the student of Ustad Mian Shaukat Hussain. He has been awarded with many accolades such as Taj Poshi, the Hazrat Amir Khusrow Award, as well as Pakistan's Pride of Performance Award in 2008. Tari Khan belongs to the tabla playing gharana called the Punjab gharana.
The tabla is a membranophone percussion instrument originating from the Indian subcontinent, consisting of a pair of drums, used in traditional, classical, popular and folk music. It has been a particularly important instrument in Hindustani classical music since the 18th century, and remains in use in India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka. The name tabla likely comes from tabl, the Persian and Arabic word for drum. However, the ultimate origin of the musical instrument is contested by scholars, some tracing it to West Asia, others tracing the evolution of indigenous musical instruments of the Indian subcontinent.
Punjab Gharānā, is a style and technique of Tabla playing that originated in the Punjab region of what is now split in present-day Pakistan and India.
In poetry, the ghazal is a poetic form consisting of couplets which share a rhyme and a refrain. Each line must share the same meter. Etymologically, the word literally refers to "the mortal cry of a gazelle". The animal is called Ghizaal, from which the English word gazelles stems, or Kastori haran (where haran refers to deer) in Urdu. Ghazals are traditionally expressions of love, separation and loneliness, for which the gazelle is an appropriate image. A ghazal can thus be understood as a poetic expression of both the pain of loss or separation of the lover and the beauty of love in spite of that pain. The structural requirements of the ghazal are more stringent than those of most poetic forms traditionally written in English. In its style and content it is a genre which has proved studied variety of expression around its central theme of love and separation between lovers.[ citation needed ] The ghazals can be written by male poets for women as well as by female poets for men, as an expression of one's feelings about mutual love and whatever comes in that package- accompanying joys, frustrations, disappointments, fulfillment and satisfactions. The ghazal spread into South Asia in the 12th century under the influence of the new Islamic Sultanate courts and Sufi mystics. Exotic to the region, as is indicated by the very sounds of the name itself when properly pronounced as ġazal. Although the ghazal is most prominently a form of Urdu poetry, today, it has influenced the poetry of many languages. Most Ghazal singers are trained in classical music and sing in either Khyal or Thumri.[ citation needed ]
A couplet is a pair of successive lines of metre in poetry. A couplet usually consists of two successive lines that rhyme and have the same metre. A couplet may be formal (closed) or run-on (open). In a formal couplet, each of the two lines is end-stopped, implying that there is a grammatical pause at the end of a line of verse. In a run-on couplet, the meaning of the first line continues to the second.
A rhyme is a repetition of similar sounds in the final stressed syllables and any following syllables of two or more words. Most often, this kind of "perfect" rhyming is consciously used for effect in the final positions of lines of poems and songs. More broadly, a rhyme may also variously refer to other types of similar sounds near the ends of two or more words. Furthermore, the word rhyme has come to be sometimes used as a shorthand term for any brief poem, such as a rhyming couplet or nursery rhyme.
A refrain is the line or lines that are repeated in music or in poetry; the "chorus" of a song. Poetic fixed forms that feature refrains include the villanelle, the virelay, and the sestina.
Qawwali (Urdu : قوٌالی) is the devotional music of the Chishti Sufis. Qawwali is a vibrant musical tradition that goes back more than 700 years in South Asia . Although most Qawwali singers are found in Pakistan and they performed mainly at Sufi shrines throughout South Asia, it has also gained mainstream popularity. Qawwali music received international exposure through the work of the Sabri Brothers in 1975, late Bakhshi Salamat, Aziz Mian and Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, largely due to several releases on the 'Real World' label, followed by live appearances at WOMAD festivals. Listeners, and often artists themselves are transported to a state of wajad, a trance-like state where they feel 'one with God', generally considered to be the height of spiritual ecstasy in Sufism. Qawwali was essentially created by Amir Khusrau in the late 13th century in the Mughul Empire. During the first major migration in the 11th century, the musical tradition of Sama migrated to South Asia from Turkey. Rumi and his Mevlana order of Sufism have been the propagators of Sama in Central Asia. Amir Khusrau of the Chisti order of Sufis is credited with fusing the Turkish, Persian, Arabic, and South Asian musical traditions, to create Qawwali as well as the classical music tradition. The word "Sama" is used (or is the preferred name) in Central Asia and Turkey, for forms very similar to Qawwali while in Pakistan, the formal name used for a session of Qawwali is "Mehfil-e-Sama". Instruments used in qawwali include:
The Chishtī Order is a Sunni Sufi order within the mystic Sufi tradition of Islam. It began in Chisht, a small town near Herat, Afghanistan, about 930 CE. The Chishti Order is known for its emphasis on love, tolerance, and openness.
The Sabri Brothers is a music band from Pakistan who are performers of Sufi qawwali and are closely connected to the Chishti Order, They are referred to as Roving ambassadors of Pakistan. The band was initially founded and led by Ghulam Farid Sabri and his brother Maqbool Ahmed Sabri.
Aziz Mian Qawwal was one of Pakistan's leading traditional qawwals and also famous for singing ghazals in his own unique style of qawwali. Aziz mian is honorably considered as Shahenshah E Qawwali which means The Ultimate King Of Qawwali, he is considered to be one of the Greatest Qawwali singers of all time. Today he is still one of the most popular qawwals of the world, and he has given us many Qawwali hits. He holds the record for singing the longest commercially released qawwali, Hashr Ke Roz Yeh Poochhunga, which runs slightly over 150 minutes.
A group of qawwali musicians, called Humnawa in Urdu, typically consists of eight or nine men. Women are usually excluded from traditional Muslim music as ' respectable women' are traditionally prohibited from singing in mixed-gender public gatherings. Traditionally over the centuries, this has been the practice per the general interpretation of Islamic Law by the religious scholars. Although women are encouraged to hold their own 'Women Only' gatherings for reciting religious 'Naats' and holding live dance and music parties with musical instruments on 'Just- Before- Weddings-Mehndi' celebrations. This again, has to be a 'Women Only' event per the long practiced tradition where Islam generally discourages mixed-gender gatherings among unmarried women and unmarried men. Although in the 20th century, the so-called modern era, actual practice among Islamic societies, has been that one will see a lot of female musicians and female singers holding public concerts for both men and women. For evidence, one can just read the musician name lists on this page to spot a lot of female names on those lists now.
There is a large number of hamd and naat singers in Pakistan. This is a type of Islamic religious music where poetical verses of the love for God (Allah) is expressed. Some of the most famous artists include Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, along with his nephew Rahat Fateh Ali Khan. There are Sabri Brothers Qawwal, Qawwal Bahauddin Khan from Karachi. 'Hamd' is also used extensively in Christian religious music from Pakistan and all over the world where people from this region are found. 'Hamd' is not the exclusive domain of any religion. As pointed out – it denotes praise to God, it is more extensively used in the Muslim world. It is usually used in conjunction with the Sanna (praise) and referred to as 'Hamd – o – Sanna'. 'Naat' denotes praise to the prophet Muhammad.
Pakistani folk music deals with subjects surrounding daily life in less grandiose terms than the love and emotion usually contained in its traditional and classical counterpart. In Pakistan, each province has its own variation of popular folk music. Pakistan has created many famous singers in this discipline such as the late Alam Lohar, who was very influential in the period from 1940 until 1979: he created the concept of jugni and this has been a folk song ever since, and he sang heer, sufiana kalaams, mirza, sassi and many more famous folk stories. Other famous folk singers include Sain Zahoor and Alam Lohar from Punjab and Abida Parveen, Allan Fakir and Mai Bhaghi from Sindh, Akhtar Chanal Zahri from Baluchistan and Zarsanga from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, who is considered the queen of Pashto folk music.
The music of Balochistan province is very rich and full of varieties due to the many different types of languages which are spoken in the province, including Balochi, Pashto, Brahui, Dari and Saraiki.
According to Balti folklore, Mughal princess Gul Khatoon (known in Baltistan as Mindoq Gialmo—Flower Queen) brought musicians and artisans with her into the region and they propagated Mughal music and art under her patronage.Musical instruments such as the surnai , karnai, dhol and chang were introduced into Baltistan. Classical and other dances are classified as sword dances, broqchhos and Yakkha and ghazal dances. Chhogho Prasul commemorates a victory by the Maqpon rajas. As a mark of respect, the musician who plays the drum (dang) plays for a long time. A Maqpon princess would occasionally dance to this tune. Gasho-Pa, also known as Ghbus-La-Khorba, is a sword dance associated with the Gasho Dynasty of Purik (Kargil). Sneopa, the marriage-procession dance by pachones (twelve wazirs who accompany the bride), is performed at the marriage of a raja.
Music from the Punjab province includes many different varieties. One can read the 'main article' link directly above for details.
Potohari has a rich tradition of poetry recital accompanied by sitar, ghara, tabla, harmonium and dholak. These poems (potohari sher) are often highly lyrical and somewhat humorous and secular in nature, though religious sher are also recited.
Music from Sindh province is sung in Sindhi, and is generally performed in either the "Baits" or "Waee" styles.
The predominant language found in Pakistan's Northern Areas has an extensive oral history which dates back several thousand years. With the increase in tourism to Pakistan's Northern Areas and increased domestic as well as international awareness of the local folk music, the Shina folk traditions have managed to stay alive and vibrant. Folk music in this region has remained relatively pure and unscathed by modern influences due to the relative isolation of this area. The arrival of many refugees from the adjacent Nuristan province of Afghanistan and the subsequent increase in commercial activity in Chitrali bazaars allowed this local form of music to flourish in the past few decades.[ citation needed ]
Saraiki language is spoken by 13.9 million people in southern Punjab and northern Sindh. Atta Ullah Essa Khelvi Khan is one of the most famous Saraiki singers in Pakistan, hailing from Mianwali.
Pashto music is commonly found in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and in Pakistan's major urban centres such as Karachi, Islamabad, Rawalpindi, Lahore, Sialkot and Multan. Music genres include Tappa, Charbeta, Neemkai, Loba, Shaan and Badala.
Music from Hazara Division is sung in Hindko dialect, and is generally performed in either the Mahiyay or Shaer styles.
Pakistani music in the 21st century revitalized itself and has many segments as follows:
Pop music really started in the South Asian region with the famous playback singer Ahmed Rushdi's song ‘Ko Ko Korina’ in 1966. Composed by Sohail Rana, the song was a blend of 1960s bubblegum pop, rock and roll twist music and Pakistani film music. This genre would later be termed as filmi pop. Paired with Runa Laila, the singer is considered the pioneering father of pop music, mostly hip-hop and disco, in Pakistan.
Following Rushdi's success, Christian bands specialising in jazz started performing at various night clubs and hotel lobbies in Karachi, Hyderabad and Lahore. They would usually sing either famous American jazz hits or cover Rushdi's songs. Rushdi sang playback hits along with Laila until the Bangladesh Liberation War when East Pakistan was declared an independent state. Laila, being a Bengali, decided to leave for the newly independent Bangladesh.
Nazia Hassan, the sister of another pop singer Zohaib Hassan and the member of the pop group Nazia and Zoheb, in 1981, became the first playback singer to release a pop music album. Her first album was "Disco Deewane" and second was "Aap Jaisa Koi". Both the albums broke sales records in Pakistan and India and even topped the charts in the West Indies, Latin America and Russia. Hassan won several awards for her songs, including the Filmfare Award for Best Female Playback Singer for the later and received the Pakistan's highest civilian award, Pride of Performance for her contributions in the music field.
Modern pop singers such as Ali Zafar, Hadiqa Kiani, and Atif Aslam have made international waves as well, winning numerous awards and performing in some of the world's most prestigious arenas. In 2013 Atif Aslam became the first Pakistani pop singer to perform at The O2 Arena London twice and has sung several songs for Hollywood and Bollywood. Aslam is also the youngest recipient of Tamgha-e-Imtiaz, one of Pakistan's highest civilian honours, for his work in the music industry.He was also named in 2012 among top performers of Dubai alongside Pitbull, Enrique Iglesias, Il Divo, Gotye, Evanescence and Swedish House Mafia.
The rise of rock music in Pakistan began in the 1980s when cassettes first came into Pakistan bringing in a wave of Western rock music, particularly groups such as Pink Floyd. Since then, the nation's music industry has witnessed groups such as Junoon, Vital Signs, and Noori. The nation has also since then seen the rise of talented and internationally renowned musicians such as Faraz Anwar.
Pakistani hip hop is a blend of traditional Pakistani musical elements with modern hip hop music.
Pakistan's film industry known as "Lollywood" is based in Lahore and Karachi.
Music journalism in Pakistan has grown over the years and most newspapers and TV channels have their own reporters and critics on music of Pakistan.
Qawwali is a form of Sufi Islamic devotional music and notably popular in the Punjab and Sindh regions of Pakistan; in Hyderabad, Delhi and other parts of India, especially North India; as well as the Dhaka, Chittagong and Sylhet divisions of Bangladesh. It is part of a musical tradition that stretches back for more than 700 years and traces much of its growth to the Bhakti Movement in Hindu society, with which the element of music was infused into Islamic devotion.
Ustad Bade Fateh Ali Khan, (1935 – 4 January 2017) was amongst the foremost Khyal vocalists in Pakistan, and a leading exponent of the Patiala Gharana. He was the younger of the singing duo Amanat Ali and Fateh Ali, who enjoyed immense prestige and success in Pakistan as well as India, until the sudden and unexpected death of Amanat Ali Khan in 1974 (1922-1974).
Ustad Amanat Ali Khan (Urdu: اُستاد امانت علی خان ), was a Pakistani classical and ghazal singer, from the Patiala gharana. Singing duo of both brothers Amanat Ali Khan and Bade Fateh Ali Khan were together honoured with the 'Pride of Performance' award by the President of Pakistan back in 1969. He stands with great singing icons like Mehdi Hassan and Ahmed Rushdi and left behind hundreds of classical and semi-classical songs for the public to remember him by.
UstadAli Baksh Jarnail Khan, (1850–1920) was an Indian classical singer. Together with his friend Fateh Ali Khan, he founded the Patiala Gharana in the 19th century. They used to sing together as a team back then.
Asad Amanat Ali Khan (Urdu: اسَد امانت علی خان ), (25 September 1955 – 8 April 2007) was a popular classical, semi-classical and ghazal singer from Pakistan. Hailing from Patiala Gharana, Asad was son of musician Ustad Amanat Ali Khan. Asad Amanat Ali Khan died relatively young of a heart attack on 8 April 2007 in London.
Sham Chaurasi Gharana is a gharana in Hindustani classical music known for the singing of vocal duets, most notably represented in modern times by the brothers Nazakat and Salamat Ali Khan.
The All Pakistan Music Conference (APMC) was founded in 1959 for the promotion of classical music in Pakistan. Ever since its inception, it has been a constant source of inspiration for thousands of music lovers nationwide. APMC has been holding an annual 6-day-music-festival of live performances by the musicians of Pakistan for more than 50 years now.
Shaukat Ali, also known as Shaukat Ali Khan, is a folk singer from Pakistan.
Coke Studio is a Pakistani television programme and international music franchise which features live studio-recorded music performances by established and emerging artists. It is the longest-running annual television music show in Pakistan since 2008. Coke Studio combines myriad musical influences, from traditional classical, folk, Sufi, qawwali, ghazal and bhangra music to contemporary hip hop, rock and pop music.
Sanam Marvi is a Pakistani folk and sufi singer. She sings in Sindhi, Punjabi and Balochi languages.
Chhaap Tilak Sab Chheeni, is a ghazal written and composed by Amir Khusro, a 14th-century Sufi mystic, in the Braj Basha language. Due to the resonance of its melody and mystical lyrics, it is frequently heard in Qawwali concerts across South Asia. The poem has a romantic expression, however, it is a devotional verse penned by Amir Khusro in respect of his spiritual mentor, Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya as seen in verse below 'I give my whole life to you Oh, Nizam, You've made me your bride, by just a glance'.
Badar uz Zaman is a classical musician of Pakistan. He contributes to Pakistani Classical Music by promoting and re-interpreting compositions of the sub-continent's Muslim composers. Zaman performs with his brother, Ustad Qamar-uz-Zaman, carrying forward the Pakistan's own "Kasur Gharana" traditions of the art of Khayal music. Classical singers typically represent Indian Gharanas of Music.
Shani Arshad is a Pakistani playback singer, songwriter, film music director and record producer. He has composed music for various television serials and films including Main Hoon Shahid Afridi and Na Maloom Afraad (2014).
Maqbool Ahmed Sabri was a major Qawwali singer, and a leading member of the Sabri Brothers, a leading qawwali group in Pakistan during the 1970s–1990s. He was awarded the Pride of Performance Award by the President of Pakistan in 1978.
Surayya Multanikar, is a Pakistani singer mostly known for her folk songs. Her repertoire includes classical, semi-classical, ghazal, folk songs and film songs.
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