Coke Studio, unplugged!

Published: June 5, 2010
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Zeb and Haniya:

How was the experience of being a part of Coke Studio this year?

Coke Studio was as exciting for us this year as it was last year. The stress is up a couple of notches because I feel people expect more from us this year than they did last year, but we’re pretty sure it’s all going to sound great.

Whose performance are you looking forward to watching at Coke Studio?

Haniya: I’m most excited about Abida Parveenji’s and Fakir Juman Shah’s performances.

In the past two years, Coke Studio has introduced a different brand of fusion music to Pakistanis. Is this the only platform left for folk and indigenous music to thrive?

In the current socio-political scenario, Coke Studio has been the only project willing to invest so heavily in bringing our traditional forms of music to the forefront.

What was the highlight for you this year?

Haniya: Our collaboration with Noori was definitely one of this season’s high points for me.

Karavan:

How was the experience of being a part of Coke Studio?

The Coke Studio experience for us is one of camaraderie and team work.
Assad Ahmed: This is my second year and I have to say that as a unit all of us were much more cohesive this time.

Whose performance are you looking forward to watching at Coke Studio?

We feel the performances were all great but if we had to choose one it would be Abida Parveen.

In the past two years, Coke Studio has introduced a different brand of fusion music to Pakistanis. Is this the only platform left for folk and indigenous music to thrive?

We would hope not…Coke Studio is the start of something that hopefully others will continue in the future.

What was the highlight for you this year?

Assad Ahmed: The highlight for me this year was getting to play with all these great artists and also having the new Karavan album Saara Jahan released. We also played live on Coke Studio… life is good

Arieb Azhar:

How was the experience of being a part of Coke Studio this year?

The experience of being part of Coke Studio was beautiful – again! It was great to see that the producers of Coke Studio had outdone themselves in terms of organisation, music planning and production and the content involved this season.
Everything from the word go was as smooth as clockwork. It was a pleasure to see this level of professionalism in Pakistan, which just goes to show that everything can be done here just as well with the right work and intent.

Whose performance are you looking forward to watching at Coke Studio?

This year I am personally looking forward to several performances, the foremost being Abidaji, Fakir Juman Shah from Bhitshah, Rizwan and Muazzam, Tina Sani, Sanam Marvi and Arif Lohar.

In the past two years, Coke Studio has introduced a different brand of fusion music to Pakistanis. Is this the only platform left for folk and indigenous music to thrive?

This is the only platform left (or should I say ‘newly introduced’) for folk musicians to survive in the mainstream media.

Folk and indigenous music has always survived and thrived outside of mainstream corporate funded media in the shrines and folk festivals of this land, and I believe it always will. The producers of the Coke Studio project were sagacious enough to bring this deeply rooted, educative and truly entertaining content into the mainstream media.

What was the highlight for you this year?

The highlight this year was the Coke Studio press conference in which everyone who had participated in this year’s project was present. It gave me the opportunity to watch some of the video clips of all of the other artists, and to fully appreciate the scope of its work this time round. It was also a unique honour to sit amongst so many artists who have been inspirations for me in my personal journey as a musician.

Arif Lohar:

How was the experience of being a part of Coke Studio?

It was absolutely amazing! I think with this project, Rohail Hyatt has started something which will be remembered by many generations.

Whose performance are you looking forward to watching at Coke Studio?

Everyone on Coke Studio has worked really hard and has done an amazing job. I will be tuning in to watch all the performances.

In the past two years, Coke Studio has introduced a different brand of fusion music to Pakistanis. Is this the only platform left for folk and indigenous music to thrive?

I personally think Coke Studio is really different from all other platforms and it has done a great job in promoting our rich folk music culture but I do think there should be more platforms for folk music in the country.

What was the highlight for you this year?

As an artist whatever I have achieved from this project and the reaction of people to my performances will be the highlight for me this year as this is something which I have never done before.

You have worked with younger artists before, but this was an entire cast of young new musicians. How was your experience?

Performing with this great ensemble of artists was an experience I will never forget. Every single house band member is uniquely talented in their own way.

An entire generation of young people were introduced to your music via state-run television. Do you feel that there are enough platforms for musicians of your generation left now?

I think Coke Studio is an excellent platform for musicians like me as well. It gives us an opportunity to experiment and present our music like never before but like I said earlier, we need more of such platforms in the country to promote folk music and our culture in general.

Meesha Shafi:

How was the experience of being a part of Coke Studio?

Being a part of Coke Studio was most overwhelming. It gave me the opportunity to be under the same banner as so many legends, and even my own contemporaries.

It was also an introduction to how things are executed with finesse and professionalism in the rest of the world. Our industry has a long way to go, and Coke Studio is paving the way and setting very high standards. I’m honoured to be a part of it.

Whose performance are you looking forward to watching at Coke Studio?

Definitely Abida Parveen and Tina Sani. As for fresh talent, I think Amanat Ali and Sanam Marvi have beautiful vocals.

In the past two years, Coke Studio has introduced a different brand of fusion music to Pakistanis. Is this the only platform left for folk and indigenous music to thrive?

It’s not the only platform left, it’s the only platform there ever was. Everybody has big ideas, executing them is where most fail the test. Coke Studio is only getting bigger and better.

What was the highlight for you this year?

Collaborating with Arif Lohar on Coke Studio! I am a huge fan of his.

Abida Parveen:

How was the experience of being a part of Coke Studio?

The atmosphere built was similar to the ones at shrines. Coke Studio has its own flavour, concept, colours, everything unique in its truest sense.

It felt like everything has merged into one to produce a fusion which is often only witnessed in shrines. Every person involved, from the producers, to coordinators, to the technicians to the musicians, they have created an environment which has lead to new and undiscovered paths.

In the past two years, Coke Studio has introduced a different brand of fusion music to Pakistanis. Is this the only platform left for folk and indigenous music to thrive?

This project which Rohail Hyatt has started is indeed great and I would like to be a part of it for a long time.The music that comes out of this project reaches both the heart and soul and it always compliments the lyrics without overriding the true message of the kalams. This platform builds on those messages of our Sufi elders.

What was the highlight for you this year?

To experiment and experience Coke Studio in a manner which commends the nature of shrines, spreads the message of Sufi kalams, the freshness of talent seeking the eternal moment were the highlights.

You have worked with younger artists before, but this was an entire cast of young new musicians. How was your experience?

During the recording, I was actually waiting to perform with these musicians as every stage in Coke Studio is different and I was tensed about my performance. I think if you don’t feel a level of heightened tension about your work you cannot prepare properly.

This new generation of artists have their own taste and they also respect Sufi kalams. The connection of soul and heart has nothing to do with age and they all felt enlightened from within.

Published in the Express Tribune, 6th, 2010.

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Reader Comments (5)

  • Jun 6, 2010 - 8:46PM

    Can’t wait to see Abida Parveen tonight :)Recommend

  • Jun 7, 2010 - 12:24PM

    Noorie with Zeb & Haniya; gotta be the best of this season. Can’t wait!Recommend

  • Jun 7, 2010 - 6:10PM

    man abida parveenji was awesome in first episode… will definitely catch her in other episodes…. Recommend

  • Ednan
    Jun 8, 2010 - 12:05PM

    Abida Aunty you are the best … Cant stop listeining Ramooz-e-Ishq …. Love it!Recommend

  • Sana
    Jul 18, 2010 - 5:50AM

    Massive disappointment this season except for Arif Lohar.
    For God sake bring the likes of Jal,Roxen,Call instead of bringing same old zeb hanya and noori.Also would love to see Sajjad ali and alamgir.Recommend

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