When you are joining one of the biggest names on the Indian Sufi music scene, the Wadali Brothers, for a performance on stage, being nervous is expected. And it doesn’t make it any less nerve-wracking if you carry the same last name yourself.
The Wadali Brothers, 80-year-old Puranchand Wadali and his 72-year-old brother Pyarelal Wadali of Amritsar’s Guru Ki Wadali, were taught the art of Sufi music by the great Bade Ghulam Ali Khan himself. Over the years, they have delivered memorable songs like ‘Tu Maane Ya Na Maane’ and ‘Rangrez Mere’. It seems only natural that the singing prowess has seeped into the next generation as well.
Lakhvinder Wadali, the 36-year-old son of the elder of the two brothers, is ready for his first performance at Delhi’s Siri Fort Auditorium on Saturday, but is also feeling the pressure. “Wadali Brothers is a big name to be carrying on my shoulders,” he says. “My father, who is also my guru, will be there, singing with me. Of course, the pressure is very high but I am looking to do my best.”
Lakhvinder would tag along when the Wadalis toured across the country and outside it, mesmerising audiences everywhere with their renditions of poets like Kabir, Surdas and even Bulle Shah. However, he does not restrict his singing to pure Sufi songs.
Tonight, for the first time, the trio will be performing Sufi music with guitars and keyboards, giving their act a more Bollywood flavour, while also revisiting their classic and popular songs like ‘Tu Maane Ya Na’. “Filmy music depends on a situation provided by the movie. Even if they mould the original Sufi songs, it is to suit their purposes. If anything, it only gilds the lily,” says Lakhvinder.
Talking about the growing popularity of Sufi music, he says, “I hope a younger generation will develop a taste for Sufi music now that I am a part of the team.”
The Wadali Brothers will perform at Siri Fort Auditorium today, 6.30 pm.
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