Today marks the 23rd anniversary of the death of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, a world-renowned Pakistani musician, and Qawwali vocalist.
Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, the legendary Qawwali singer, was born in Faisalabad on October 13, 1948.
He was the fifth child and first son of Fateh Ali Khan, a musician, vocalist, instrumentalist, and Qawwal.
He was a Qawwali singer who was regarded as one of the best ever recorded.
The famous qawwal had a six-octave vocal range and could perform for many hours at a high degree of intensity.
Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan is generally recognized for bringing Sufi music to worldwide audiences by carrying on his family’s 600-year-old Qawwali heritage.
He was known as Shahenshah-e-Qawwali, which translates to “King of Kings of Qawwali.”
He also collaborated on music with A R Rehman, an Indian composer, and Javed Akhtar, a Bollywood lyricist.
Through his collaboration with Peter Gabriel on the music of The Last Temptation of Christ in 1985, he was able to reach out to western audiences.
Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan holds the global record for the greatest recorded output by a Qawwali musician, with 125 albums as of 2001, according to the Guinness Book of World Records.
On August 11th, 1997, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan became sick with kidney and liver failure in London.
He died of a sudden cardiac arrest at Cromwell Hospital‚ London‚ August 16‚ 1997 aged 48.
Nusrat’s father did not want him to pursue the family’s profession at first.
He wanted Nusrat to pursue a more respectable professional route, such as doctor or engineer since he believed Qawwali musicians had a poor social standing.