Peshawar’s passionate music lover, Teen Beat’s Masood Ahmed Paracha, passes away

Published: August 21, 2013
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Paracha opened the music store in 1978 against all odds.

Paracha opened the music store in 1978 against all odds.

PESHAWAR: 

Born in Kohat to a conservative family, Masood Ahmed Paracha fought against all odds to pursue his dream. In 1978, he established Teen Beat, Peshawar’s largest and oldest music store, despite resistance from his orthodox family and the generally conservative Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa region.

“He was a brave man who always followed his dream despite facing opposition from the family,” says Nasir Khan, the assistant who worked with Paracha at Peshawar’s popular music store. “It was due to his bravery and love for music that I remained associated with him for over 26 years.”

Paracha breathed his last on Sunday, due to “old age”, according to Khan. “He did not really have any health problems,” he says, adding that he was buried in his ancestral village in Kohat.

When it started out, Teen Beat had only 150 music records. Today, it has the largest audio collection in the province, with 10,000 CDs, 10,000 cassettes and around 14,000 LPs. Apart from the collection, autographs from prominent singers and musicians such as Mohammad Rafi, R D Burman, Jagjit Singh, Noushad, Manna Dey, Reba McEntire, Nayyara Noor are also prominently displayed inside the shop.

Aside from the expected classic and contemporary Pashto music, Teen Beat used to be the region’s hotspot for English music. It offered a great collection of classical and semi-classical Urdu songs. Customers would come from far-flung places and were left dumbfounded with the variety of music available in Peshawar. Paracha’s knowledge in music was immaculate. “He had profound knowledge about both Eastern and Western music,” asserts Khan. “People from far flung areas would come in search of music. Not once did anybody go back empty-handed.”

The people of the city loved him for keeping their culture and heritage alive. Records from old Pashto singers like Ghani Khan, Hamza Baba and Sabz Ali Khan, could only be found in his personal treasure.

Zeeshan Parwez of the band Sajid and Zeeshan recalls memories with the popular store owner. “I was introduced to him in 1992,” he posted on Facebook. “Since then, I have been going there to purchase countless albums and order selections. The Teen Beat card [receipt for order collection] is my most treasured thing,” he says. “I think many people would back me up when I say this — a lot of times I found that a record was available at Teen Beat only 10 days after its worldwide release. In those days, it was unheard of because new records would reach Offbeat and other shops a bit later,” he adds.

Parwez shares details of his last meeting with Paracha. “I met him last year when I went to buy some Pashto CDs. He had aged quite a bit but still had that smile on his face. Only, this time, he was asking for an autographed poster of me and Sajid so that he could put it up on his wall alongside other posters.”

In his last years, Paracha worried about the decline in his business due to the availability of free music online. The number of visitors at his shop gradually dwindled, but he continued to pursue his dream till his last day.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 22nd, 2013.

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Reader Comments (15)

  • Omar Rawi
    Aug 21, 2013 - 8:55PM

    I remember this gentleman may e rest in peace

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  • Sarah_Yz
    Aug 21, 2013 - 8:57PM

    RIP :( I met him only once some 15 years ago. He was incredibly nice.

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  • nadeem
    Aug 21, 2013 - 10:47PM

    The only reason why i was introduced to quality music. May his soul rest in peace. From days of abba to megadeth ever thing was available and he is the reason why english music fl9ureshed in peshawar

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  • Mindless
    Aug 21, 2013 - 11:30PM

    RIP paracha,
    I bought my first cassette from paracha in 1986, it was mix collection of Queen and other pop titles.
    What a man, he had incredible knowledge of music, he gave a lp of INXS as gift when I told him that I am moving abroad.he was so nice over I called him few days before eid that I am visiting pakistan can he do me ghani khan collection cd, despite his busy schedule and some family member death he left cd at my house before going for kohat.
    Great respect for him, what a brilliant man, rest in peace.amen

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  • Ihsanullah Bangash
    Aug 22, 2013 - 6:31AM

    Like every city, Peshawar has had many legendry charachters in various fields. There was uncle Tony in Saddar introducing innovative products and photography. There was Meher Din, an outstanding craftsman of sporting equippment. Then there was Masood bhai. Anyone who grew up in Peshawar or even in NWFP for that matter, and had a love for music, knew him. He served the music lovers but also introduced it to so many new ones who visited his shop. Other than the vast collection of records, his speciality was preparing “selections” given fancy names. Its amazing how he survived the tough last few years when Taliban blew up so many CD shops in the province. Perhaps they loved his collection of Nashanas! Rest in peace Masood bhai..

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  • nasser yousaf
    Aug 22, 2013 - 9:33AM

    I don’t think Paracha was very old. He must not have been more than 60-62. In his death Peshawar has rightly lost a treasure of music.. Rest in peace, Paracha!

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  • bilal
    Aug 22, 2013 - 9:48AM

    RIP

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  • Ali Jan
    Aug 22, 2013 - 10:11AM

    So saddened to hear about Masood Paracha’s demise. In my younger years, almost my entire music collection bore stickers of either ‘Teen Beat’ (Peshawar) & ‘Music Junction’ (Murree) – Teen Beat was a part of our lives and a visit to the store with friends to get the latest cassettes (sounds so retro!) was a must-do weekly ritual. Masood Paracha you were a dear man, you served all the music lovers and Peshawar will miss you a lot – AJ

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  • Aug 22, 2013 - 10:22AM

    Inna Lillahe Wa Inna Ilaihe Rajeoon. RIP Mr. Paracha. Ameen. Salams.

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  • amer khan
    Aug 22, 2013 - 1:26PM

    RIP Paracha saib. . . my pocket money used to go all towards buying teen beat cassettes in my school days in the 90s.

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  • bangash
    Aug 22, 2013 - 5:48PM

    Rest in Peace to Mr Paracha. I remember him from my childhood and he was a good person.

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  • Salman
    Aug 22, 2013 - 8:05PM

    I became Teen Beat’s customer since 1985/86 and remember the golden moments of Peshawar. Mr. Paracha no doubt had a good knowledge of music western or eastern and was a good man. May Allah forgive his sins. Amen. Rest in Peace.

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  • Nouman
    Aug 23, 2013 - 3:49PM

    The visits to Teen Beat as a passionate music lover in his teens are still etched in my memory. Masood was a lovely man and a source of sanity in the mad world of his times. RIP!

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  • Faiz Paracha
    Aug 23, 2013 - 4:05PM

    Masood Bhai, was such a lovely and caring person. May Allah rest his soul in eternal peace and tranquality. Ameen. You will be missed Massood bhai.

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  • Ihsanullah Bangash
    Aug 26, 2013 - 8:21AM

    A page has been created on the Facebook in memory of Masood Paracha and Teen Beat.
    https://www.facebook.com/TeenBeatPeshawar

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