FAISALABAD, AUG 15 – Music industry had been orphan when he died in a hospital of London on August 16, 1997 at the age of 49. Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan was born on October 13, 1948 in Faisalabad.
Ghulam Ghaus Samdani changed his name to Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan from Pervaiz. His father, Ustad Fateh Ali Khan, and two of his uncles, Ustad Mubarik Ali Khan and Ustad Salamat Ali Khan, were famous qawwals belongs to the Patiala gharana originated from Basti Sheikh, Jalandhar today in India. He followed the 600-year old Qawwali tradition of his family.
The Singing Buddha’s legacy is very enchanting. He toured extensively, performing in over 40 countries including US, Europe East Asia and Middle Eastern countries. He was given the title of Ustad (the master) after performing classical music at a function in Lahore on the anniversary of his father’s death.
He became the head of the family qawwali party in 1971 after the death of his uncle Ustad Mubarik Ali Khan. In 1987 he received Pride of Performance Award for his contribution to Pakistani music from President of Pakistan. 1990s he contributed to the soundtracks of several popular films. In 1992 to 1993 academic year, Khan was a Visiting Artist in the Ethnomusicology department at the University of Washington, USA.
He received the UNESCO Music Prize in 1995and next year in 1996 he was awarded Grand Prix des Amériques at Montreal World Film Festival. Khan’s album Intoxicated Spirit was nominated for Grammy Award for Best Traditional Folk Album in 1997. Night Song was also nominated for Grammy Award for Best World Music Album In 1995. His art were researched in Europe and many books were written. Time magazine added his name to the list of Asian Heroes in 2006.
A book called Emperor Qawwali was published in Japan and he was given the title of “Singing Buddha” in 1992. A.R Rehman said he was very generous man and good friend of me. He composed a song “Tere Bina” for the film Guru as a tribute to Khan in 2007. Michael Brook helped increase the accessibility of Nusrat’s shortly before his death, and composed several songs in collaboration. Khan also composed music for three Bollywood films, and other famous indian artist like Lata Mangashkar, Asha Bhoslay, R. D Burman and A.R Rehamn also sang his composed songs.
Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan’s nephew Muhammad Ali Sheikhu expressing similar feelings, he said, “Really 23 years?” no every day, every minute and every second one of his fans is listening to him, the legend never dies. Because of them, our family is known around the globe. When Nusrat Khan’s Qawwali or a song is sung somewhere; the heart becomes happy to hear it. Mirza Abubakar of LSC Foundation Faisalabad celebrated his 23rd death anniversary by lighting the candles.
Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan’s ancestral home at Lasori Shah Road Jhang Bazar Faisalabad was sealed due to circumstance after his death. Locals are demanding from PM Imran Khan and department of Archeology to take the possesion of his home and founding the music academy and gallery on his name.