The Music of Pakistan : The Most Diverse Selection of Music

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By Amanda Kidd

Pakistan, the world’s sixth largest populous country, showcases a diverse demography. It exhibits a blend of music elements from Central Asia, Iran, the Middle East and India. With such diverse emergence, Pakistani music seems to be one of the most diverse forms of music present in the entire world. The six major languages spoken in the country (Punjabi, Pashto, Sindhi, Saraiki, Urdu and Balochi) add to the variety of melody which is found here.

Arabic, English, Indian, Persian and Portuguese music have particularly shown their mark in Pakistani music. The popularity of music has not left the United Kingdom and the Unites States untouched. Recognition to the music can be seen by instances like the “West meets West”, a 2010 British comedy drama film. The film’s soundtrack features three Pakistani songs.

Largely, the Pakistani music can be categorized as traditional and a blend of the East with the West. Although, classical music is losing its popularity with the emergence of modern and western music, yet it still supposedly is the platform for all music forms. Whatever be the genre, classical music provides fundamentals to all. Learners prefer to gain classical skills before experimenting further with other forms of melody. Sadarang Archives was formed in year 2000 to preserve and provide a gateway to classical music traditions of the country.

Qawwali music is extremely popular here. Qawwali comes from the Arabic word qual which means “utterance”. Its origin dates back to the 13th century, when Amir Khusrau (a legendary poet and composer) supposedly invented qawwali. These songs are intended to stimulate religious ecstasy. This Sufi form of music is lively and inadvertently connects to the audience owing to its charm. Names like Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and Sabri Brothers are a delight to hear. Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan’s contribution along with artists like Michael Brook and Jeff Buckley, has given recognition to the art of qawwali throughout the world.

The country has a diverse display of folk music, although it is losing its popularity similarly like the classical music. Credit for giving a blend of folk and classical types was given to the famous artist, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. Pakistan has a special bent for Bhangra, a Punjabi folk dance that has become popular all over. Bhangra and Panjabi folk songs are largely themed for harvest and cultivation. Poetic impression is largely revealed through Pakistan’s musical dictionary, whatever is the form of melody. You can also find Sindhi music in the “Baits” or “Waee” styles. The “Bait” can be vocal music in Sanhoon (low voice) or Graham (high voice). “Waee” particularly is an instrumental display of music. Sindhi music adorns various musical instruments like the ektara, dhol, naghara, tanpura etc. The Shinha folk traditions still remain alive and vibrant in Pakistan (particularly Northern areas). The Khowar folk music finds profound support (particularly during the last century). Owing to the demographic advantage of being in isolation, the Khowar music seems to be pure and unscathed by modern influences.

Another form is the Seraiki. Its importance can be attributed to the fact that during and after the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, much of the Afghan music industry survived by performances and recordings made in Pakistan. With a distinct historical background, Pakistani melody does not only echo mature music. The “Rock” fever has not left Pakistan untouched either; credit mainly is going to the young generation of the country.

Pakistan also features its own film industry, “Lollywood”. It is credited to be the leader in giving some of the most familiar filmmakers, actors, writers and directors. South Asia got its first pop music through Pakistani film industry.

Pakistan’s music is supposedly relaxing, depicts good poetry and has a blend of the past and the present.

About the author:  Amanda Kidd is a blogger and a hard core follower of different styles of celebrities. By profession she is into marketing business and hence, she has been lately interested in blogging on luxury. She frequently writes on most expensive things in the world and her latest article is on the world most expensive wireless mouse. This guest post is specially written by Amanda to highlight the features of Pakistani Music and its different genres.

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