Pankaj Udhas calls Khayyam a genius, says ‘he could do musical justice to poetry’
Music composer Mohammed Zahur Khayyam Hashmi, popularly known as Khayyam, passed away on Monday in Mumbai. He was 92. The award-winning composer had composed the music for films like Shola aur Shabnam, Umrao Jaan and Kabhi Kabhie. He was awarded Padma Bhushan in 2011. Khayyam’s last rites will be performed on Tuesday in Mumbai. Ghazal singer Pankaj Udhas remembers the legendary composer.
An era of melody has come to an end. I would say that Khayyam saab was one of the finest composers we had and I consider him to be an absolute genius because of the way he could do musical justice to poetry. I don’t think anyone else could do that.
I have had the good fortune of singing a couple of his compositions. One of them was for a TV serial for which Khayyam saab was doing the music.
This was a beautiful solo song and then later I did a duet with Kavita Krishnamurthy again composed by him for the film Mohabbaton Ka Safar.
But apart from that, I knew him on a personal level and I don’t have the words to express what a fine human being he was and what a thorough gentleman he was.
To give you an example of his mastery over poetry and composition: the nazm Ae Dil Hain Nadaan from the film Razia Sultan. The way he had composed it and the way he had expressed each and every word musically can be a textbook for all music composers.
My only regret now that Khayyam-saab has passed away is that I along with his son, who has passed away, had worked on a project that Khyyam saab was very excited about. Unfortunately that did not happen and that would be my biggest regret.
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