Pankaj set to captivate audience

DUBAI - Ghazal maestro Pankaj Udhas will captivate a large Dubai audience when he performs at the Watan Se Chitthi Ayee Hai concert at the India Club today as part of its 40th anniversary celebrations.

By Debasree S.

Published: Thu 29 Jan 2004, 12:13 PM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 2:31 AM

The concert will start at 9-30 pm and continue up to 11-30 pm with an expected audience of more than 4,000 India Club members, who will be treated to a memorable evening of soul-stirring music.

Today's concert is also part of the celebrations of "25 years of the velvet voice" by Pankaj who has made ghazals and Urdu poetry popular during the last two decades, rescuing it from the clutches of obscurity. In the cacophony of contemporary pop and jazz music too, he has proved that ghazals still charm music lovers the world over, through his evergreen songs. And despite the slump in the Indian music market, Pankaj's albums continue to scale new heights of success, enthralling music lovers with their soulful music and poetry.

As a mark of recognition to an era that has just been completed, Pankaj has plans to celebrate the success in style with a long festival of events to commemorate what the ghazal maestro calls "a life in itself." The yearlong celebrations will include around 25 concerts in different countries including the US, Canada, S. Africa, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, the Gulf and Africa. There are also 25 concerts to be performed in 25 different cities in India, the proceeds of which will be given to charity.

Other highlights of the month-long celebrations include the release of a commemorative album with 25 of Pankaj's best ghazals, release of two new albums, release of a book of lyrics of all ghazals sung by him till date, release of Pankaj's official memoirs and an exclusive concert for the jawans of India.

Pankaj made his first album of ghazals in 1980 titled Ahat after 10 years of struggle. Speaking at a Press conference at the India Club in the presence of the club's chairman Mahendra Pancholia, vice chairman Sunil Singh, Col. Vijay Dalvi, CEO, the maestro said that the 10 years of struggle between 1970 and 1980 prepared him for the long journey ahead and that also helped him to hold on to his success. Unlike recent singing sensations, who enjoyed overnight stardom and then fizzled out, Pankaj said that it was important to work towards music and offer something good every time to the audience.

The maestro also rued the recent deterioration of the quality of music claiming that the media hype on music videos was responsible for the decline. "What they try and sell on these videos are not music, he claimed.

He said there was no shortage of talent in India "but it needed to be channelised in the right direction." He also highlighted the need to revive Urdu as a language of poetry as immortalised by his series of ghazals. His song in the film Naam - Watan Se Chitti Ayi Hai - still remains one of the most popular ones sung by him with his latest album In Search of Meer proving his popularity all over again.

The concert will be sponsored by ICICI Bank, the Indian face of Global Banking, Air India, Khaleej Times and 106.2 Hum FM.

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