Nightclubs in the city are getting into sufi mode. Popular duo of qawwals — Rizwan and Muazzam Ali Khan of Coke Studio Pakistan fame, will be performing in the Capital today.
Paying a tribute to their uncle, late legendary musician Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, the duo will be presenting a mix of his popular numbers and some of their own renditions. “We have a family tradition of performing qawwali for over 700 years. Qawwali flows in our blood,” says Rizwan.
Having performed across countries and also in the Capital before, the duo thinks that the genre of music has listeners all over. “I would say that qawwali has trained sufi music. Both the genres are from the same family of traditional music forms,” says Muazzam. If given a choice to perform in India and Pakistan or elsewhere, they prefer performing in the city or in Pakistan.
“Bahut khushi hoti hai jab apne log humein sahraate hain (Appreciation, when it comes from our own people gives us happiness),” says Muazzam. So is performing in India different from playing in Pakistan? “Not at all! Both countries are same for us. People understand the same language and have a similar choice in music. Music has no boundaries,” he says.
Talking about the growing culture of sufi sock, Rizwan says, “If they like it that way, then let it be. But, the actual essence of sufi music is qawwali.” The duo does not prepare any playlist for their performance.
“Once we get an idea about the taste of the audience, we play and perform accordingly,” adds Rizwan. Though neither of them extensively followed the Indian version of Coke Studio, they feel that it was different from the version in Pakistan. “In Pakistan, emphasis was on bringing lesser know talent to the limelight, whereas in India, popular artists performed,” says Rizwan.