Music, pandemic, emerging artistes | By Shafaq Khalid

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Music, pandemic, emerging artistes


Music is an art that has been seen in all diverse cultures around the world. Music is a combination of melody, harmony, rhythm, and timbre.

In all human societies, it is being used as a language to express their feelings, emotions, and gratitude.

As the Pakistani culture is intertwined with the culture of South Asia & Central Asia therefore, music was greatly influenced by its neighbours and ethnic groups.

Pakistani culture is enriched with the music; be it folklore, classical, Sufi, Ghazal’s or Qawwali’s.

The era before 2000s’, we have seen some amazing artistes who have made the country proud by their collaborative music, be it Madam Noor Jahan, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Nazia Hassan, Abida Parveen, Alamgir, etc.

Some splendid art of work we have seen and heard growing up.

The 21st Century era is yet another time where we have seen third, fourth generations of legends making music that narrate their experiences and emotions.

During this era and before, there was always a part of our indigenous areas which considered that music is not the right thing to do, and our youngsters should not pursue music as a career as its’ a no-go area.

Back then, the legendary artistes did make the music and that has been carried forward to-date by the aspiring music artistes.

Year 2020 made us opt for a line of work that was not considered a well-known career.

For instance, many of us have witnessed that home-based cooks, aspiring actors, actresses, musicians, writers, authors, calligraphists, painters, tech savy youngsters – they all achieved that height that many of us considered it a failure.

The downside of pandemic was not only the businesses, but it also emerged the aspiring artistes who were looking for a platform to show their potential and capability – it can be a Tik Tok platform, YouTube, Instagram or even Facebook.

We all must admit that some of the great music came during quarantine when people were confined in their homes and they had time to think and write and then record it and set it free in the world.

It can be the International artistes or Pakistani’s who not only installed their own music studios in their houses, but they somehow connected with their fans through the live sessions on Instagram, YouTube or Facebook.

More artistes came on front with their music or the skill they possess during the quarantine.

Artistes who do not have means to launch their songs, have recorded the music on their smartphones and set it within the market.

Just like that, Coke Studio – one of the biggest platforms for the aspiring artistes, they put together a show that helped the emerging artistes to play their music, but it wasn’t necessary that they had to be in one room to record the songs. Coke Studio did step up the game during pandemic.

On the footsteps of Coke Studio, we have seen Velo Studio Station, Kashmir beats – they also promoted the artistes – be it a TV actor, actress, a singer or so forth.

It is commendable to see that the music industry and artiste fraternity came together, and they produced one of the best music they could have over all these years, it can be a rap music, pop music, acoustics, hip pop, rock, jazz, heavy metal, classical music, punk rock, alternative rock, instrumental, rhythm and blues or popular music etc.

I just want to praise the artistes who put forth their efforts and who not only helped millions of people to come out of the depression of being home confined during a pandemic but inspired them to start working even during these testing times.

We, freelance columnists, writers, editors must write to promote the good thing that has happened during the worst time and how we have come out of it but there is still a long way to go yet.

— The Lahore-based writer is a columnist and contributes regularly to the national press.

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