Karachi(Cliff News)Having completed a series of concerts globally to pay tribute to the legendary Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, we are embarking to bring back Qawali to its old galore through a series of 100 concerts around the world. We have chosen the poetry of the famous poets and sufis from the subcontinent to bring to you “JUST QAWALI Tour 2018.” Ustad Rahat FatehAli Khan will be performing live in more than 100 concerts across the world and enthral his fans with the renditions. Similar to 2017 when a befitting tribute was given to Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan through a series of concerts across the globe, 2018 from March onwards will becelebrated as the year of the Qawali.The tour is called “JUST QAWALI 2018”and performances are planned in America, Canada, UK, UAE, Bahrain, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Turkey, Morocco, South Africa, Kenya, Nepal, Bangladesh and Pakistan and some more countries. The details were disclosed by Salman Ahmed, CEO PME at a press conference in Karachi. Ustad Rahat FatehAli Khan and his Business Manager Aamir Hassan also attended the media briefing.Ustad Rahat Fateh Ali Khan speaking to the media said: “I am basically a Qawaland the poetry of the sufi’s runs in my veins. Qawali is at the heart of our family traditions and my ancestors have worked hard to develop this genre of music and introduce it to the world. The world of Music has not seen a Qawal that is parallel to Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. He glorified the art of Qawali and took the art to international audiences. He won many awards and accolades for his performances. Qawali and I are inseparable. It runs in my blood. Whatever I am performing, qawali is always at the heart of it. Qawali gives me the unique edge in all the music that I do.”
Responding to another question UstadRahat Fateh Ali Khan said that he has noticed that his Qawali’s are appreciated more than Bollywood numbers in live concerts. Hence based on the preference of his fans, he has decided to celebrate 2018 as Year of the Qawali. To further celebrate Qawali, he will also be releasing a new album the year. Salman Ahmed and his team are working very hard to make this happen.The world will see Qawali being brought back to the forefront and hence we are calling the tour “JUST QAWALI”. We feel that our listeners have been seeking good Qawali’s for some time and hence we have regrouped for these concerts. To bring back the true spirit of the tradition we have called back some of the old musicians who specialise in this type ofmusic. These veterans have performed with the legendary Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. We will be introducing some new music and looking at enhancing the beauty and depth of this genre of music, however it will all be very pure Qawali. We have chosen the poetry of Hazrat AmeerKhusrao, Shaikh Saadi, Bu Ali SeenaQalander, Haafiz Sherazi amongst other classical giants.All preparations are in place and rehearsals are in full flow. Qawali is a very popular cultural music and will be played till eternity in the shrines and places of sufis and saints. It is a centuries old tradition and we want to make an effort to glorify it further in the coming years. The spirituality that we experience in songs today are all because of the richness that qawali has given to modern music. Infact it is being said that in order to produce a block buster film, all that needs to be done is add a Qawali. Foreigners who don’t understand the language also appreciate Qawali and love the traditional music. Even Indians love Qawali and listen to it in personal gatherings. Interestingly ouryounger generation also appreciates Qawali and I get a lot of requests from them during my concerts in colleges and universities.”Salman Ahmed further elaborated that for centuries sufis and saints have been expressing themselves through poetry. Shrines and holy places have a long history of qawali renditions which date back centuries. Sufi music or qawali was started during the times of Khawaja Moinuddin Chisti and Hazrat Ameer Khusrao. In the Subcontinent the art of Qawali is thousands of years old, which has been passed down from one generation to the other. In Pakistan Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan truly glorified the art and introduced new techniques of the art to the world. After his young death, his disciple UstadRahat Fateh Ali Khan has held the mantle for glorifying the art and keeping his family tradition alive. Being born and brought up in a musically oriented family, qawali runs in his blood. From a young age Ustad Rahat Fateh Ali Khan used to perform with his uncle Ustad NusratFateh Ali Khan in various Qawaligatherings.In December 2014, Ustad Rahat Fateh Ali Khan performed a Qawali in Oslo at the Nobel Peace Prize Ceremony which enhanced Pakistan’s image in the international arena. He also has the honor of performing at the United Nations General Assembly Hall during the “Pakistan Day Celebrations”. His renditions at the “Sufi Night” are remembered by many even till today. This UN session was attended by representatives of more than 200 countries and they went into a trance when they heard Ustad Rahat Fateh Ali Khan perform. In 2017 Oxford University dedicated a space in “Khan Sahab’s” name and he has also been a guest at the Google global head office. He is a true good will ambassador for Pakistan and promotes brotherhood and peace everywhere he goes.