If one begins to recall Pakistani artists who have gained international acclaim, Shafqat Amanat Ali will top the list hands down. Unfortunately, even with his melodious voice, his latest song titled “Zindagi” for Bollywood film Raaz 3 fails to impress.
Raaz 3 is an upcoming horror film directed by Vikram Bhatt and produced by Mahesh and Mukesh Bhatt. The film is a sequel to Raaz — the Mystery Continues, which itself was a sequel to Raaz (2002), featuring Emraan Hashmi. Esha Gupta and Bipasha Basu are also a part of the film and Raaz 3 marks Basu’s comeback into the Raaz series after she opted out of the second one.
Shafqat’s song for this B-town movie raises concern about the kind of projects the “rockstar ustad” is taking up.
The melody of “Zindagi” is not at all impressive; while the vocals are something that could have been done by KK or any other B-town singer, it is not something one would expect from someone as talented as Shafqat. This latest release just shows that while he is undoubtedly one of the most talented and versatile Pakistani singers who have made it big across the border, Shafqat hasn’t been smart when selecting projects. In this regard, it would do him well to take a leaf out of Rahat Fateh Ali Khan’s and Atif Aslam’s books.
Here are five reasons why we love Shafqat Amanat Ali
There is no doubt that Pakistani pop music never had a vocalist better than Shafqat Amanat Ali. Songs like “Khamaj” and “Teray Bina” (that he sang for Fuzon) are rendered timeless and will be written in golden words in the history of Pakistani pop.
“Mitwa” was Shafqat’s dazzling introduction to Bollywood. With his phemonenal vocals for an upbeat Shankar Ehsaan Loy number, he left music critics and producers across the border absolutely spellbound. Shafqat has been lucky enough to be the voice of actor Shahrukh Khan, once in “Mitwa” and then in “Tere Naina” in My Name Is Khan.
No matter how much appreciation Shafqat gets for “Mitwa”, his song “Yeh Hosla” for Nagesh Kukunoor’s Dor is by far the best work he has done for Bollywood. The song is definitely one of the most mature compositions he ever sang.
Mehreen Jabbar’s Ramchand Pakistani might have not been very well-received at the box office, but the songs that Shafqat did gained immense popularity. The song titled “Phir Wohi Raaste” in particular might not have been the most unorthodox of compositions, but was definitely one of the most soulful compilations. After all, it was the amazing vocals Shafqat gifted to the immortal words of Anwar Maqsood that did the trick.
‘Khaireyaan De Naal’
If there is one song that has impressed us all from his solo albums, then it has to be “Khaireyaan De Naal”, a beautifully sung and brilliantly produced song from his solo album Tabeer which narrates the tale of Heer Ranjha in a mesmerising fashion.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 15th, 2012.