A Melodic Odyssey

Step into the enchanting world of Schumaila Rehmat Hussain, where masterful compositions and a passion for music converge, captivating audiences

By Ghazalatikki Zaman and Tabassum Vally

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Published: Mon 14 Aug 2023, 3:09 PM

Haunting melodies, a remarkable voice and a passion for composition define Schumaila Rehmat Hussain’s journey in music.

Hussain came to Dubai some eight years ago and since then Hussain has travelled between Pakistan and Dubai on numerous occasions, performing at different events and festivals.

Hussain has a voice that catches one attention immediately. Her control of voice, the clear delivery of lyrics and her magical composition are enough to mesmerise any audience. Hussain has composed and sung many lyrics that have been used in films and Pakistani dramas. She thinks that a melodious voice is a gift but it still needs to be worked on and only with relentless training can one do justice to singing.

Hussain received formal training from Ustad Fathe Ali Khan, who helped her to understand music in its classical form. Spending almost two years in training, Hussain continued to follow her passion for music and learnt much about music through listening to icons like Begum Akhtar and Mehdi Hasan.

Hussain moved to Dubai in 2015 and soon realised that though there was a captive audience, there was still much work to be done in creating awareness for traditional music and lyrics that were being composed by new singers. Though Hussain sang a medley of old and new songs, she wanted to introduce her creations to her audience. As a composer and producer of songs, she brought a new life to music and lyrics, which was appreciated by her audience. A song is not just words put together but is a statement of emotions, and to Hussain her songs must reflect the mood and sentiment for which they were written. To her credit are lyrics from movies like Manto and Azad, and she has had the privilege of working with renowned producers in the Pakistani film industry.

Talking about the film industry in Pakistan Hussain thinks that though steps are being taken to promote indigenous film production the Pakistan film industry needs time and a lot of evolution to reach a meaningful place within Pakistan and globally. Her experience, while working for the film industry made her realise, that songs for films had to be curated around situations and mood and hence the script plays an important role in producing lyrics.

Hussain as an artist, believes that music is ever-evolving, acting like a fluid that takes its shape and form. According to her, a society can evolve around its own culture and poetry. To her poetry is an important part of intellectual growth. As an artist, she feels that life without poetry is soulless as poetry depicts the deepest emotions shaping our lives.

Hussain spoke about her album with much fondness, a compilation of Jaun Elia poetry that was released in 2021, after almost seven years of hard work. In 2022 her album ‘Gulmuhar’ was released, and now her much-awaited album ‘Dharkan Kaye Par’ will be released soon.

Hussain now has her studio, the Grey Note, where she works on compositions and lyrics. Dubai has given her a place of tranquillity. Though Dubai is growing and there is a buzz around the city, Hussain in her studio finds it a peaceful and perfect haven for her creativity.

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