Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan’s legacy remains

Published: August 16, 2011
Nusrat Fateh Ali’s name is listed the Guinness Book of World Records as a qawwali artist. PHOTO: FILE

Nusrat Fateh Ali’s name is listed the Guinness Book of World Records as a qawwali artist. PHOTO: FILE

World-renowned Pakistani musician Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan’s 14th death anniversary was observed with a Quran Khawani in his native Faisalabad, reported the Daily Express. Various events — to be attended by personalities from different fields of art — were also scheduled to be held in Britain, as well as his hometown.

The soultouching singer was an icon whose music resonates in qawwali evenings and in any discussion about Pakistani music. Even after so many years of his passing, his music continues to inspire audiences around the world.

Born in Faisalabad on October 13, 1948, he was Ustad Fateh Ali Khan’s fifth child. With qawwali ingrained in the family — a 600-year-old tradition — there was little surprise that Khan also mastered the skill. According to the Guinness Book of World Records, Khan holds the world record for the largest recorded output by a qawwali artist.

Mostly singing in Punjabi and Urdu, Khan also sang in Hindi, Braj Bhasha — a dialect of Hindi — and Persian. One of his best performances was “Haq Ali Ali” which infused folk style and traditional instruments. According to, the versatile musician not only sang for Pakistani films but also contributed to Bollywood in the films Aur Pyaar Ho Gaya and Kachche Dhaage as well as the title song for the film Dhadkan.

Reaching great heights of success, his artistic influence made its way to the western world. He reached out to western audiences through his work with Peter Gabriel on the soundtrack to The Last Temptation of Christ in 1985. His work has also featured in the song “The Long Road” — a track in last year’s film Eat Pray Love.

Having been ill with kidney and liver failure, Khan passed away on August 16, 1997 in London at the age of 48.

Some of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan’s top hits

“Afreen Afreen”

“Sun Charkhe Di Mithi Mithi Ghook”

“Tere Bin Nahin Lagda Dil Mera Dholna”

“Yeh Jo Halka Halka Saroor Hai”

“Mae Ni Mae Mere Geetan”

“Haq Ali Ali”

“Akhiyan Udeek Diyan”

Published in The Express Tribune, August 17th, 2011.

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Reader Comments (6)

  • mk
    Aug 16, 2011 - 9:28PM

    May Allah bless you Nusrat — your voice and music lives in my heart! Thank you for touching our souls with such depth and emotion


  • Mubashir
    Aug 16, 2011 - 9:49PM

    His Legend Lives On…. Mortal Man… Immortal Melodies!


  • Fortune Cookie
    Aug 17, 2011 - 11:48AM

    Simply the BEST.


  • abdul jabar
    Aug 17, 2011 - 2:13PM

    very nice classic music,nusrat sung,my heartily prayers for him always………


  • khurram shahzad
    Aug 17, 2011 - 5:15PM

    Simply the best and know as “Ustaad” or “Khan Sb”. He is pride of Pakistan, heart touching melodies.


  • Muhammad arif
    Aug 27, 2011 - 8:49AM

    Very good singerRecommend

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