[VIDEOS] The Coke Studio phenomena - Page 3


Sohail Speaks Yasir's Blog Fazeer's Focus

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  1. #161
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    Quote Originally Posted by saadibaba View Post
    This is it. Amir Zaki's swan song. Not really worthy of his legend. Perfunctory, bit choppy and disinterested. I guess an apt reflection of his state of mind towards the end.
    You can almost feel the utter jadedness in the notes. It sounded quite a bit like his solo on Asrar's Sab Akho Ali Ali from Season 7. It felt more like he's practicing his scales or playing a familiar riff to warm up.


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  2. #162
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    Otherwise though, a solid episode again. I've only heard the songs once, and yes, like always, there were things that could've been better, but a solid episode nonetheless.


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  3. #163
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nostalgic View Post
    Otherwise though, a solid episode again. I've only heard the songs once, and yes, like always, there were things that could've been better, but a solid episode nonetheless.
    That's what it has been with Strings....lacking in some aspects but reliable, pleasing to the ears, the hummable quality embodied in all their songs, their gift of melody, their craft and methods solid and dependable but still...something is missing.

    I hate to bring Rohail Hayat back into the conversation but frankly, the all too clichéd term "magic" has been missing since he left. With Rohail there were complete duds as well but there was also a chance of something special, something mesmerizing that opened new windows in your mind. That music can truly take you somewhere you've never been before. It was transcendental. He was simply operating at another level.

  4. #164
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    Quote Originally Posted by saadibaba View Post
    That's what it has been with Strings....lacking in some aspects but reliable, pleasing to the ears, the hummable quality embodied in all their songs, their gift of melody, their craft and methods solid and dependable but still...something is missing.

    I hate to bring Rohail Hayat back into the conversation but frankly, the all too clichéd term "magic" has been missing since he left. With Rohail there were complete duds as well but there was also a chance of something special, something mesmerizing that opened new windows in your mind. That music can truly take you somewhere you've never been before. It was transcendental. He was simply operating at another level.
    The show needs something fresher next season. There are a few trends, formulae if you will, that have always bothered me, and this season continues these tired old cliches:

    1. Every song ends with the two vocalists singing their respective parts of the medley in unison. In theory it is meant to represent the two songs fusing together. In reality, all it creates is an almighty din. Its like what they say about guitar solos in 80's ballads, and the inswinging Waqar Younis yorker: you know its coming, and there's nothing you can do about it. They also say that about something else, but lets not go there.

    2. Speaking of medleys, I'm all for fusion, but some of the choices make no sense whatsoever. The songs they choose to fuse have little to do with each other, and it is hard to find the theme that is supposedly tying them together. Rohail was as much a culprit at this as anyone else.

    3. Every other song starts off with the vocalists going through the scale. Again, in theory it makes sense, if the scale isn't the plain vanilla Western major (major 2nd and 3rd, perfect 4th and 5th, major 6th and 7th), and the listener needs to be acquainted with the scale before they end up in the meat of the song. The reality is that two minutes, sometimes more, is spent on the singers going through this.

    4. Cowboy chords on the guitar. What is the point of having some good guitar players on the show, only for them to strum the same old hackneyed chords? You'll see from the fingerings that they are mostly first position standard voicings. Rohail, to his credit, utilized open tunings often enough. If they can't use open/alternate tunings, at least go for a more riffy sound rather than the same old chords over and over and over.

    5. The music is just too dense at times. Why not have only a subset of the house band on any one song, and really emphasize the instruments that do make the cut for that song? Here, I felt Strings were actually on the right track somewhat, they've always rotated the banjo, mandolin and rubab, first with Ustaad Tanveer Tafu, now with Amir Azhar (who is actually Tanveer Tafu's nephew), but they've still had the entire house band playing. I would prefer a much more stripped down sound, at least for a season or two.

    These are things I would change. But I'm not going to be invited to produce it anytime soon, so I'm just venting.


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  5. #165
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    A couple more.

    I'm sick and tired of these duets. Does every song require a male and a female voice?

    More on the guitar playing. Even when they step away from the chords into arpeggios, they are tired, cliched arpeggios. No variation whatsoever.

    Much of these issues stem from the sheer number of songs. Why have twenty five-plus songs, when most of them end up being fillers? The producers and the house band cannot really be expected to come up with fresh ideas for all twenty five or more. I would happily trade quality for the quantity they dish out every year.

    Here too, Rohail was no better than Strings. If you watch the Behind the Scenes from his seasons at the helm, you'll hear him tell the band to come up with "a trippy departure." He used this phrase on more than a few occasions. The result is a trippy enough filler song, a trip that you only take once, before you never play the song again.


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  6. #166
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nostalgic View Post
    The show needs something fresher next season. There are a few trends, formulae if you will, that have always bothered me, and this season continues these tired old cliches:

    1. Every song ends with the two vocalists singing their respective parts of the medley in unison. In theory it is meant to represent the two songs fusing together. In reality, all it creates is an almighty din. Its like what they say about guitar solos in 80's ballads, and the inswinging Waqar Younis yorker: you know its coming, and there's nothing you can do about it. They also say that about something else, but lets not go there.

    2. Speaking of medleys, I'm all for fusion, but some of the choices make no sense whatsoever. The songs they choose to fuse have little to do with each other, and it is hard to find the theme that is supposedly tying them together. Rohail was as much a culprit at this as anyone else.

    3. Every other song starts off with the vocalists going through the scale. Again, in theory it makes sense, if the scale isn't the plain vanilla Western major (major 2nd and 3rd, perfect 4th and 5th, major 6th and 7th), and the listener needs to be acquainted with the scale before they end up in the meat of the song. The reality is that two minutes, sometimes more, is spent on the singers going through this.

    4. Cowboy chords on the guitar. What is the point of having some good guitar players on the show, only for them to strum the same old hackneyed chords? You'll see from the fingerings that they are mostly first position standard voicings. Rohail, to his credit, utilized open tunings often enough. If they can't use open/alternate tunings, at least go for a more riffy sound rather than the same old chords over and over and over.

    5. The music is just too dense at times. Why not have only a subset of the house band on any one song, and really emphasize the instruments that do make the cut for that song? Here, I felt Strings were actually on the right track somewhat, they've always rotated the banjo, mandolin and rubab, first with Ustaad Tanveer Tafu, now with Amir Azhar (who is actually Tanveer Tafu's nephew), but they've still had the entire house band playing. I would prefer a much more stripped down sound, at least for a season or two.

    These are things I would change. But I'm not going to be invited to produce it anytime soon, so I'm just venting.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nostalgic View Post
    A couple more.

    I'm sick and tired of these duets. Does every song require a male and a female voice?

    More on the guitar playing. Even when they step away from the chords into arpeggios, they are tired, cliched arpeggios. No variation whatsoever.

    Much of these issues stem from the sheer number of songs. Why have twenty five-plus songs, when most of them end up being fillers? The producers and the house band cannot really be expected to come up with fresh ideas for all twenty five or more. I would happily trade quality for the quantity they dish out every year.

    Here too, Rohail was no better than Strings. If you watch the Behind the Scenes from his seasons at the helm, you'll hear him tell the band to come up with "a trippy departure." He used this phrase on more than a few occasions. The result is a trippy enough filler song, a trip that you only take once, before you never play the song again.
    Agree on all the points.

    I am also sick and tired of duets, medleys for the sake of satisfying a larger swath of the audience and Strings behaving like children who are so ecstatic at having 10 or more different instruments to play with that they include each and everyone of them in every song, whether they make sense or not. Meekal Hasan's treatment of Noor Jehan's "Mujhe se pehli si muhabbat" sounds a bit fresher and different because of it being a bit reserved, although in my opinion it could have been even more minimalistic.

    Having a laugh about the "trippy departure" comment by Rohail. I guess he started milking it a bit as well.

  7. #167
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    Better than anything on Coke Studio this season

  8. #168
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    Another episode.3 decent ones. What were Faraz and Faiza doing there? I could not hear that song for 2 minutes.

    5th episode is done and dusted. If i am right there are still at least 2 episodes to go.


    " Don't wait. The time will never be just right "

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  10. #170
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    Quote Originally Posted by Syed1 View Post
    Saw it this morning. Like the other songs, it was decent enough, which seems to be the theme of this season. Very few outright duds, and just as few outright hits.

    On this particular song, I thought they overdid the opening lines. They were repeated three times, and apart from that, there was one other set of verses.

    I've been slightly disappointed with the drums this season. I was highly impressed with Aahad Nayani the last two seasons or so: he seemed to have really grown from his thrasher roots, showing great layering and nuance in his playing. This season, each drum part sounds similar, and the drum crescendos, the ultimate in 80's pop/rock cliches, appear on every single song.


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  11. #171
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    Also is it just me, or is anyone else slightly uncomfortable with the incongruity of a socialist anthem on a Coke-sponsored show? On the one hand, it shows how universally popular Faiz's poetry is, and the artistes on this show have as much a right to pay him a tribute as anyone else. However, on the other hand, when this happens, alongside the even more bizarre appropriation of Faiz's poetry by right-wing political parties, something of the message loses its essence.
    Last edited by Nostalgic; 9th September 2017 at 10:03.


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  12. #172
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    This is the song of the season for me. Melodious composition, beautiful lyrics and excellent singing by father and son.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nostalgic View Post
    Saw it this morning. Like the other songs, it was decent enough, which seems to be the theme of this season. Very few outright duds, and just as few outright hits.

    On this particular song, I thought they overdid the opening lines. They were repeated three times, and apart from that, there was one other set of verses.

    I've been slightly disappointed with the drums this season. I was highly impressed with Aahad Nayani the last two seasons or so: he seemed to have really grown from his thrasher roots, showing great layering and nuance in his playing. This season, each drum part sounds similar, and the drum crescendos, the ultimate in 80's pop/rock cliches, appear on every single song.
    Yes, this is what i felt. Just a good filler. Basically, a cover of original and that too only of opening few lines.
    I think a lot depends on music directors too. He has shown in the past that he can do. Sab Maya ha has a good dhol and drums combination.


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  14. #174
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    Rahat's song is also good.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Nostalgic View Post
    Saw it this morning. Like the other songs, it was decent enough, which seems to be the theme of this season. Very few outright duds, and just as few outright hits.

    On this particular song, I thought they overdid the opening lines. They were repeated three times, and apart from that, there was one other set of verses.

    I've been slightly disappointed with the drums this season. I was highly impressed with Aahad Nayani the last two seasons or so: he seemed to have really grown from his thrasher roots, showing great layering and nuance in his playing. This season, each drum part sounds similar, and the drum crescendos, the ultimate in 80's pop/rock cliches, appear on every single song.
    Pretty much the case this season, nothing amazingly good or bad songs.

    For me, Baazi (Sahir Ali Bagga and Aima Baig) stands out this season so far!

  16. #176
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    Quote Originally Posted by Waseem View Post
    Pretty much the case this season, nothing amazingly good or bad songs.

    For me, Baazi (Sahir Ali Bagga and Aima Baig) stands out this season so far!
    It is on par with Aaya Lariye from the last season. A hit is like Saami meri waar, Afreen Afreen, Tera woh pyaar. Btw, Aima has two more songs.

    Humera Arshad, Umair Jaswal, Natasha Khan, Rachel , irteassh yet to feature.

    I hope people like Sajjad Ali and Nabeel Shaukat Ali have more numbers. If Danyal Zafar can have 2 then they should get 4 apiece. The idea of Danyal has not worked, some people in the production department have over rated the looks of artists, unless your good looks are backed by good vocals you can't impress listeners.


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  17. #177
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nostalgic View Post
    Also is it just me, or is anyone else slightly uncomfortable with the incongruity of a socialist anthem on a Coke-sponsored show? On the one hand, it shows how universally popular Faiz's poetry is, and the artistes on this show have as much a right to pay him a tribute as anyone else. However, on the other hand, when this happens, alongside the even more bizarre appropriation of Faiz's poetry by right-wing political parties, something of the message loses its essence.

    Yes, the discordance is quite obvious. Would Faiz be fine with such an exploitation...tough to say. He wasn't pragmatic enough to side with the military but was friends with moneyed gentry like the Haroon's. On one hand you have the opportunity of a broad exposure to his message and on the other hand, the message may get sullied itself while using such a corporate platform.

    I tend to think of myself as more practical than an ideologue and knowing how limited Urdu poetry reading is among millennials and youngsters, I am all for Coke making a few bucks off Faiz. Ultimately, people who like what they hear can explore him by themselves and learn to ditch the capitalist wrappings around the humanistic and socially inclusive message of Faiz.

  18. #178
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    Quote Originally Posted by saadibaba View Post
    Yes, the discordance is quite obvious. Would Faiz be fine with such an exploitation...tough to say. He wasn't pragmatic enough to side with the military but was friends with moneyed gentry like the Haroon's. On one hand you have the opportunity of a broad exposure to his message and on the other hand, the message may get sullied itself while using such a corporate platform.

    I tend to think of myself as more practical than an ideologue and knowing how limited Urdu poetry reading is among millennials and youngsters, I am all for Coke making a few bucks off Faiz. Ultimately, people who like what they hear can explore him by themselves and learn to ditch the capitalist wrappings around the humanistic and socially inclusive message of Faiz.
    Its a bit like Che T-Shirts, isn't it, except that once you actually get to read about Che's masochistic, brutal side, you realize he wasn't all he's romanticized to be. And you're $10 lighter for having bought the T-shirt. Another thing that bothers me is the giant Hasbro label on my Ouija board. It puts me off so much, I don't use it anymore. Corporations appropriating things they have no business (pardon the pun) appropriating, can be a real turn-off.

    In Faiz's case, these millennial whippersnappers would certainly like him if they ever got around to reading him... if they can actually still read Urdu and won't have to rely on a dictionary to figure out what on earth faseel-e-shehr, tauq-o-salaasil, Shorish-e-barbat-o-ney, hangaama-e-tabl-e-Qaisar-o-Key etc are.

    Anyhow, I should remind myself more often that I'm not in a position to comment on anyone else not being worthy of Faiz, since I'm not exactly a card-carrying Mazdoor Kisan Party member either.


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  19. #179
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nostalgic View Post
    Its a bit like Che T-Shirts, isn't it, except that once you actually get to read about Che's masochistic, brutal side, you realize he wasn't all he's romanticized to be. And you're $10 lighter for having bought the T-shirt. Another thing that bothers me is the giant Hasbro label on my Ouija board. It puts me off so much, I don't use it anymore. Corporations appropriating things they have no business (pardon the pun) appropriating, can be a real turn-off.

    In Faiz's case, these millennial whippersnappers would certainly like him if they ever got around to reading him... if they can actually still read Urdu and won't have to rely on a dictionary to figure out what on earth faseel-e-shehr, tauq-o-salaasil, Shorish-e-barbat-o-ney, hangaama-e-tabl-e-Qaisar-o-Key etc are.

    Anyhow, I should remind myself more often that I'm not in a position to comment on anyone else not being worthy of Faiz, since I'm not exactly a card-carrying Mazdoor Kisan Party member either.
    Yes, Che T-shirts, gold and diamond encrusted peace sign necklaces, Palestinian kufiyah's wrapped around millionaire Bollywood celebrities and not to forget any thing ever of any significance pasted on coffee mugs. Our need to convert the sacred and pure into gift shop paraphernalia and owning it as a part of some twisted new age ritual of relating to people, symbols, art etc. but in a showy commercial way is sickening. One doesn't have to be a card carrying commie, just wise enough to understand the trappings of capitalism and if one still wishes to pursue them, at least displaying the dignity of not wallowing in the glow of their supposed relatability or closeness to subjects on the opposite side of the moral and ethical design.

  20. #180
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    I have been trying to listen to some 90s Pakistani songs like Vital Signs and other bands and my god how bad all of them were.Vital Signs only good song was Ajnabi and Junoon still had some good songs but I don't know why Amir Zaki was so overrated? His song Mera Pyar is really bad.Best songs are from relatively new bands like the Call,Fuzon,Roxen and Jal etc.

    If Pakistani singers are good they will get Bollywood songs and if they are not then they will be limited to Pak and will fail in rest of their lives living like the likes of Amir Zaki

  21. #181
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    In other news, the Emirati duo of Sheikh Waz Bin Khalifa and Sheikh Kashif Bin Multan Al-Bhagwan have been nominated for multiple Grammy awards for their hit single, "Ride Me Like a Camel, Habibi."


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  22. #182
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    Much better than Amir Zaki and Vital Signs or all those flop Pakistani bands

  23. #183
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    Quote Originally Posted by Firebreaker View Post
    I have been trying to listen to some 90s Pakistani songs like Vital Signs and other bands and my god how bad all of them were.Vital Signs only good song was Ajnabi and Junoon still had some good songs but I don't know why Amir Zaki was so overrated? His song Mera Pyar is really bad.Best songs are from relatively new bands like the Call,Fuzon,Roxen and Jal etc.

    If Pakistani singers are good they will get Bollywood songs and if they are not then they will be limited to Pak and will fail in rest of their lives living like the likes of Amir Zaki

    I agree with you, Mera Pyar is actually not a great song but Amir Zaki's genius should not be judged by that single song, even though that is his most commercial/known single. He was never a vocalist, mainly a blues guitarist whose best work never got recorded and released. His failing had nothing to do with him being a bad vocalist, rather his own overtly high standards for everyone working around him and underlying psychological issues. It's a pretty sad story.

    You should visit http://www.pakpassion.net/ppforum/sh...ight=amir+zaki for more details.

    Not to sound too sanctimonious here but taking digs at someone who has passed away tragically and also much before his time is something we can all do without.

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    Thoroughly disappointing episode 6. All tracts pretty average. It seems this season is not going to provide a solid hit.


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    My midnight session with the episode has changed my mind. Actually, it is a decent episode as all others. Ali Zafar is getting too many songs with no purpose of majority of them. Considering his brother also featured in two songs, we are getting too much of Zafars.

    Ghoom Taana and Kaatay na Katay are good ones. Irteassh, already four of them, could have done themselves. Kaatay na Katay brings smooth variations. Dam Mast Qalandar is also above average but Jabar although a good singer does not bring much to the song.


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    Ghoom Tana

    Salman Ahmed's second song for CS and another medley consisting of Heer's opening, Ghooma Tana and Jogia and ending with Heer's ending. Loved MM's voice on it. Whatever criticism one can deservedly throw on him, fact remains that Salman is a gifted song writer. The song's melody gets stuck in your head and the main lyrics are deeply touching and inspiring. Liked his guitar playing on it as well, he still has it.

    Kaaty na Katay

    Loved Humaira Arshad's singing on it. Beautiful voice and delivery, even better than Rona Laila's original rendition, probably because she is classically trained and Rona was a good playback singer but not a trained singer and this song appears to be inspired by some Raag which suits classical singers. Don't understand the mashing of the rock part and overly pretentious and useless ending by Ali Hamza. Overall though, can't stop myself from listening to the Humaira Arshad's part again and again.

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    Humera Arshad's voice is quite striking, because it is so nasal. I hadn't really heard her before this, apart from the odd forgettable filmi song on TV, and I really had no memory of what she sounded like. I too have been playing just her part of the song repeatedly, because the voice is so unusual. It is almost the mirror opposite of Masooma Anwar from last season, which also caught so many of us by surprise.


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  28. #188
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    Quote Originally Posted by saadibaba View Post
    Ghoom Tana

    Salman Ahmed's second song for CS and another medley consisting of Heer's opening, Ghooma Tana and Jogia and ending with Heer's ending. Loved MM's voice on it. Whatever criticism one can deservedly throw on him, fact remains that Salman is a gifted song writer. The song's melody gets stuck in your head and the main lyrics are deeply touching and inspiring. Liked his guitar playing on it as well, he still has it.
    At first listen, it didn't really appeal to me, but I'll have to give it a few more spins.

    What I found interesting was that Heer (Junoon's first instrumental) and Jogia (the first to use lyrical imagery from the folk/Sufi tradition), both from the first album, were juxtaposed with Ghoom Tana, which is from the last album.

    Its a relief he didn't sing it himself. He did on the album, and on the video, which he turned into an Indo-Pak friendship story where he goes to Patiala to deliver a jewel left behind by a Hindu neighbor of his grandfather's during partition, and falls for Nandita Das, who plays the widow of an Indian military officer. It was over-the-top the way so many Salman Ahmad antics are.
    Last edited by Nostalgic; 16th September 2017 at 11:03.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Nostalgic View Post
    Humera Arshad's voice is quite striking, because it is so nasal. I hadn't really heard her before this, apart from the odd forgettable filmi song on TV, and I really had no memory of what she sounded like. I too have been playing just her part of the song repeatedly, because the voice is so unusual. It is almost the mirror opposite of Masooma Anwar from last season, which also caught so many of us by surprise.

    Her voice is nasally but not in a bad way. It quite suits the song. This filmi song is picturized on Rani in the Pakistan's version of Umrao Jaan Ada, in the typical kotha scene with the courtesan singing to the guests/customers. Their is a fine balance of seduction and age in that voice, a' la Munni begum/Fareeda Khanam. I'm totally mesmerized by it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nostalgic View Post
    At first listen, it didn't really appeal to me, but I'll have to give it a few more spins.

    What I found interesting was that Heer (Junoon's first instrumental) and Jogia (the first to use lyrical imagery from the folk/Sufi tradition), both from the first album, were juxtaposed with Ghoom Tana, which is from the last album.

    Its a relief he didn't sing it himself. He did on the album, and on the video, which he turned into an Indo-Pak friendship story where he goes to Patiala to deliver a jewel left behind by a Hindu neighbor of his grandfather's during partition, and falls for Nandita Das, who plays the widow of an Indian military officer. It was over-the-top the way so many Salman Ahmad antics are.
    I remember watching the video long time back. I had a crush on Nandita Das after watching the movie Earth 1947 based on a Bapsi Sidhwa's novel back when it came out in the late 90's. I never listened much to Junoon's last album as it was so mediocre but remember listening to the version with Salman on vocals and despite that, the song sounded quite good. MM was the right choice for it but she should have sung the whole thing, don't get the Benjamin sisters wanna be girl band in that song who all sounded quite mediocre.

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    Quote Originally Posted by saadibaba View Post
    Ghoom Tana

    Salman Ahmed's second song for CS and another medley consisting of Heer's opening, Ghooma Tana and Jogia and ending with Heer's ending. Loved MM's voice on it. Whatever criticism one can deservedly throw on him, fact remains that Salman is a gifted song writer. The song's melody gets stuck in your head and the main lyrics are deeply touching and inspiring. Liked his guitar playing on it as well, he still has it.
    Irteaash part and guitar felt more attractive to me.


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    I think rock part in Kaatay na katay is also good. I remember people complaining about Uzair's part in "Sammi meri waar" but i always liked the whole song. Similarly, two different styles in kaatay na katay make it a very good experience, the variation makes Humera's effort even more effective.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Nostalgic View Post
    At first listen, it didn't really appeal to me, but I'll have to give it a few more spins.

    .
    Happens many times to me. May be we are expecting something else at that time and are unable to follow original medley "Faasle" by Kaavish and QB is another underrated song which i began to like after 2nd or 3rd listen.


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  34. #194
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    Quote Originally Posted by waqar goraya View Post
    I think rock part in Kaatay na katay is also good. I remember people complaining about Uzair's part in "Sammi meri waar" but i always liked the whole song. Similarly, two different styles in kaatay na katay make it a very good experience, the variation makes Humera's effort even more effective.
    After multiple listenings, I've come to somewhat understand and appreciate the rock part as well. Per BTS of this song, Ali Hamza basically stated that he gets complete freedom to do whatever he wants with Strings so maybe the rock part of the song which was his creation, was meant to be a display of his out of the box creativity. But Humaira Arshad's part are so damn good that I just wished she would have sung more. Great discovery by CS. She should sing more of these old neoclassical numbers. I much appreciate her vocals over Fariha Pervaiz who was sung to death by Rohail on his last season. Fariha's voice just doesn't have that uniqueness and for a lack of better word, spunk to it like Humaira Arshad's. The reason I am comparing both is because they both appear to be around the same age group with similar backgrounds and claim to fame i.e. Punjabi pop songs.

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    Just heard Tinak Dhin ep2, Ali Sethi is improving,the family's fortunes seems to be surging off late.

    Ali Hamza's voice is what what makes the song good though,but can he pull an entire song not sure.


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    Quote Originally Posted by waqar goraya View Post
    I think rock part in Kaatay na katay is also good. I remember people complaining about Uzair's part in "Sammi meri waar" but i always liked the whole song. Similarly, two different styles in kaatay na katay make it a very good experience, the variation makes Humera's effort even more effective.
    I want more songs like Sammi meri waar and Laung gawacha. QB and the whole crew is just too good...

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    Quote Originally Posted by saadibaba View Post
    After multiple listenings, I've come to somewhat understand and appreciate the rock part as well. Per BTS of this song, Ali Hamza basically stated that he gets complete freedom to do whatever he wants with Strings so maybe the rock part of the song which was his creation, was meant to be a display of his out of the box creativity. But Humaira Arshad's part are so damn good that I just wished she would have sung more. Great discovery by CS. She should sing more of these old neoclassical numbers. I much appreciate her vocals over Fariha Pervaiz who was sung to death by Rohail on his last season. Fariha's voice just doesn't have that uniqueness and for a lack of better word, spunk to it like Humaira Arshad's. The reason I am comparing both is because they both appear to be around the same age group with similar backgrounds and claim to fame i.e. Punjabi pop songs.
    Humera Arshad became famous with the remix of "sada hoon apna pyaar ki". I still have memories of that song , was a huge hit on PTV. Agree, Fareeha Pervez does not has same quality.


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    I've been listening to the Natasha Khan-Ali Zafar Pashto/Urdu duet, and it isn't half bad. Natasha Khan is very competent, and even as a backing vocalist she has been quite enthusiastic, and you can tell she's interacting with the lead vocalists in every song. Her bio says she's a music producer too. Maybe one for next season?


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    Again, all four songs were very decent so i wouldn't call it a flop season but what it's missing is a super hit song that would stand out from the rest (there has been couple of close calls).

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    Quote Originally Posted by kaayal View Post
    I want more songs like Sammi meri waar and Laung gawacha. QB and the whole crew is just too good...
    Dekh tera kya/Lathay di chaddar is also another song with folk tunes.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Waseem View Post
    Again, all four songs were very decent so i wouldn't call it a flop season but what it's missing is a super hit song that would stand out from the rest (there has been couple of close calls).
    I consider a super hit with 10 million or more views within an year. Last season we had quite a few . Afreen, Tera woh Pyar, Tu kuja man kuja, ki dam da bharosa, Rang, Aya Laariye was also a hit..... Shiraz Upal and Shuja Haider had most hits.......

    I guess next episode is going to be the last one. I know one song is directed by Sajjad Ali and the other one by Shuja Haider. Mekaal Hasan should also have one more song after "Mujh sa pehli si muhabbat".

    Hopefully we will have a solid end.


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    Oh no! There is going to be another Ali Zafar song tomorrow.


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    It was a nice season with songs like Ronay Na Diya
    Us Rah Par
    Mujh Se Pehli Si Muhabbat
    Etc.

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    The finale is already out one day early because of Muharram



    First listen, i just could not understand what was it about, second listen made me like it and after third time i became addicted to this song.

    It is soft yet powerful, good vocals, nice composition.


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  45. #205
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    If I had to describe this season in one word, it would be "formulaic." Formula goes beyond merely the trademark Coke Studio sound: it is an overreliance on patterns and techniques and motifs that were once fresh, but are now dated and hackneyed.

    There were moments, and there were songs that grow on one after a few listens, but nothing that truly caught the imagination.

    Oh well. Till next year I guess.

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    Fazul season. Not one single song worthy of me putting on repeat in my car. Coke Studio grossly over shadowed by Pepsi Battle of the Bands this year. Surprising how young untrained artists did a better job than seasoned professionals.

  47. #207
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nostalgic View Post
    If I had to describe this season in one word, it would be "formulaic." Formula goes beyond merely the trademark Coke Studio sound: it is an overreliance on patterns and techniques and motifs that were once fresh, but are now dated and hackneyed.

    There were moments, and there were songs that grow on one after a few listens, but nothing that truly caught the imagination.

    Oh well. Till next year I guess.
    I agree. I guess it goes to show that music cannot be based off a formula or at best the formula needs tweaking for each song. I don't think Strings are terrible , they've been good, but no match for Rohail.

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    I don't know why I thought Ali Noor and Hamza were going to do 'Suno ke mein ho jawan' with Momina. I remember seeing something about it on Noori's fb page before the season even started. Would have been a good one.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Syed1 View Post
    Fazul season. Not one single song worthy of me putting on repeat in my car. Coke Studio grossly over shadowed by Pepsi Battle of the Bands this year. Surprising how young untrained artists did a better job than seasoned professionals.
    C'mon man. Not even Lal Meri Pat???

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    Strings have given their best. This season has shown that they have given their all and creative part is non-existent with same old formula.

    Rohail's last season was also not so great either.

    Maybe they need to reduce numbers here or maybe even divide the production part into episodes/phases.


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  51. #211
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    I feel that Coke Studio has set such high standards that performances which would be described as God-level by Indians/foreigners would sound "average" to us.

    This is probably the reason why there is this feeling of disappointment when your playlist hasn't increased much throughout Coke Studio's season.

    For me this season had potential to be awesome but misuse/wrong decisions with regards to songs by Amanat Ali, Shafqat Amanat Ali, Rahat Fateh Ali and Ataullah Khan were the main culprits. And let me just say that Us Rah Par was utterly destroyed in the season finale. I mean, c'mon even Atif sung/composed it better in Lux Style Awards.

  52. #212
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    RIP coke studios. Season 10 was the worst, starting with the national anthem how they messed it up and then adding some bad singers into. The music was so flat without any flavour.
    Last edited by Muhammad10; 23rd September 2017 at 01:26.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hadi Rizvi View Post
    I feel that Coke Studio has set such high standards that performances which would be described as God-level by Indians/foreigners would sound "average" to us.

    This is probably the reason why there is this feeling of disappointment when your playlist hasn't increased much throughout Coke Studio's season.

    For me this season had potential to be awesome but misuse/wrong decisions with regards to songs by Amanat Ali, Shafqat Amanat Ali, Rahat Fateh Ali and Ataullah Khan were the main culprits. And let me just say that Us Rah Par was utterly destroyed in the season finale. I mean, c'mon even Atif sung/composed it better in Lux Style Awards.
    Ataullah did okay. His song is fine.

    Shafqat and Ali Zafar were biggest let downs. Zafar family featured in almost every episode without much output. And Shafqat also a brilliant singer was wasted. Similarly, some one so phenomenal as Nabeel could have sung a song or two.

    Sound of the nation could also feature some more folk tunes and singers.


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    Guys like Zeeshan Ali and Asfer should be up there singing.

  55. #215
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    Us Rah Par - had such high expectations of being transported back to my college days while listening to thIS song. It fell through. Don't even feel like giving it a second listen. RIP JJ.

    Overall, a very average season. They should quit for a few years, try for some radical change in approach and come back if there really is something different and unique to offer, otherwise season after season of such mediocrity will ultimately sully the good name of Coke Studio.

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    Aima baig and momina mustehsan sound very similar,don't know why.


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    Quote Originally Posted by JaDed View Post
    Aima baig and momina mustehsan sound very similar,don't know why.
    Aima's song "Baazi" with Bagga is actually good. Much better than Momina.

  58. #218
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    Quote Originally Posted by saadibaba View Post
    Us Rah Par - had such high expectations of being transported back to my college days while listening to thIS song. It fell through. Don't even feel like giving it a second listen. RIP JJ.

    Overall, a very average season. They should quit for a few years, try for some radical change in approach and come back if there really is something different and unique to offer, otherwise season after season of such mediocrity will ultimately sully the good name of Coke Studio.
    I thought season 9 was quite a hit.


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  59. #219
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    Quote Originally Posted by JaDed View Post
    Aima baig and momina mustehsan sound very similar,don't know why.
    I don't know why you find them same. Their voice textures are quite different to me.


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    Nevertheless, it must continue. There have been 7-8 songs which i listened for more than once. Creatively, it is impossible to have 28 good songs. Strings realized that and brought in different directors but some of them have been quite ordinary, for example Shani Arshad has not brought anything new where as Shiraz Upal who had directed couple of solid hits last season was absent this season.


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    Coke studio has been quite disappointing this year yet there are 4-5 songs which are still good enough to be on my play list in the car. I am however surprised no one has talked about Pepsi Battle of the Bands on pakpassion which in my opinion gave a real fresh sound with some really good new talented bands.Some of the songs are a real breath of fresh air and I thoroughly enjoyed it.


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  62. #222
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    Stand out songs for me this season were:
    Ranjish hi sahi
    Sayoone
    Kaatay Na Katay

    Breakout artist:
    Humaira Arshad

  63. #223
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    I don't think it was completely a disastrous season but it failed to produce many super hit songs (except couple of hits).

    Having listened to some songs again, i think this could have easily been a super season so i will be looking forward to next season just like i did in previous years.

    Well done Coke Studio, please do review and ensure none of the artists get more than 2 songs.

  64. #224
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    Quote Originally Posted by Waseem View Post
    I don't think it was completely a disastrous season but it failed to produce many super hit songs (except couple of hits).

    Having listened to some songs again, i think this could have easily been a super season so i will be looking forward to next season just like i did in previous years.

    Well done Coke Studio, please do review and ensure none of the artists get more than 2 songs.
    Neither families.


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    I liked JJ's tribute. Didn't overdo it. Kept it simple. Unlike some of the other tributes that succumbed to too much experimentation, like Sayonee

  66. #226
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hadi Rizvi View Post
    I feel that Coke Studio has set such high standards that performances which would be described as God-level by Indians/foreigners would sound "average" to us.

    This is probably the reason why there is this feeling of disappointment when your playlist hasn't increased much throughout Coke Studio's season.

    For me this season had potential to be awesome but misuse/wrong decisions with regards to songs by Amanat Ali, Shafqat Amanat Ali, Rahat Fateh Ali and Ataullah Khan were the main culprits. And let me just say that Us Rah Par was utterly destroyed in the season finale. I mean, c'mon even Atif sung/composed it better in Lux Style Awards.
    You have to read the comments on Youtube regarding his performance at Lux Style, it was complete utter annhilation of the original. Liked the CS version better, atlesast it stuck to its roots the song

  67. #227
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    Baanware in the last episode was really good, all songs that featured Aima baig were amazing.

    Naina moray by Javed Bashir, Akbar Ali and Amir zaki on guitars was my favorite of all, Zak's solo was out of this world and Akbar Ali trumped JB in vocals. He was really good.

    Dekh tera kia duet by QB and Farhan Saeed was the most feel good track of all... nice and mellow both their voices complemented each other

    Tinak Dhin was an early favorite of mine.

  68. #228
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    What coke studio did wrong was keep all the crap songs in the beginning, and the good ones started coming from episode 4. I think people saw Danyal Zafar and Momina in the first episode thought this sesaon would be a dud. Sayonee didn't do any favors to the negative hype created.

    Although some of the other tributes were really well done.

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    So season 14 out with legendary Singers Abida Parveen and Naseebo Laal.


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  70. #230
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    seems to be a long time since coke studio made a cultural impact, heard the first song, sounded a bit boring to me, way too repetitive.

    the music and production was good, but u need deeper lyricism to catch the imagination. the last show stopper was probably rang by amjad farid sabri and rahat fateh ali khan.

  71. #231
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    The magic of Coke Studio is that it paints its walls in colours never placed together before and calls it a pallet. Just splashes of pastels and reds, confusing, controlling, consuming its viewers. The expectations attached to Coke Studio are rarely ever met because the final product either falls flat or exceeds them, which is a sign of a healthy and growing music platform. And for Xulfi, playing safe is rarely ever an option, or so it seems.

    Judging from his previous record, everyone had their own expectations from Coke Studio 14 and what it would entail, especially when Rohail Hyatt passed on the coveted throne to the Hum Zalmi hitmaker. But the CS14 opener has proved it was his Call-ing. By bringing together two opposing forces like Abida Parveen and Naseebo Lal to strike a balance, Xulfi has carried forward Coke Studio’s legacy while adding something new to it.

    Tu Jhoom, the first CS14 song released on Friday, sees Parveen and Lal engage in a spiritual dance of harmonies. The song isn’t as loud or aggressive as Xulfi’s prior hits but it isn’t entirely grounded either. It has a levitating feel to it, perhaps what mystic dreams are made of. True to its name, it takes its sweet time before reaching its zenith and then disperses.

    Perhaps the secret to Xulfi’s new approach to sound is his growing league of young musicians, including the likes of Abdullah Siddiqui, Sherry Khattak, Natasha Noorani, who are a part of Tu Jhoom’s ‘Think Tank’. Perhaps the machinery behind CS14 also aims to target younger listeners this time around. Whatever the case, it seems to be working. And Xulfi is to be credited for putting his trust in a new generation of artists.

    Tu Jhoom’s video is hypnotic, too. But the excessive focus on dancers seems to be taking away from the limelight on musicians. Albeit, it’s nice to see they’re not being used as props, as witnessed previously on another music show (with no disrespect to anyone). Moreover, the decision to capture Parveen and Lal in a realm other than an enclosed studio space gives both the powerhouses the room to converse. The lights, the props, everything is communicating the lyrical messages.

    It’s also pleasing to see how Lal, whose voice is often misused by producers, is finally being put to good use and given the recognition it deserves. Her higher registers are complimenting Parveen’s lower registers effortlessly and they both seem to have made the perfect sonic pairing. Some may argue that given Parveen’s range, she has been ‘under-utilised’, however, the song isn’t as demanding, to begin with. And in this case, the vocal acrobatics towards the end allows both singers to shine.

    Lyrically, Tu Jhoom is replete with messages of hope and allows listeners to forget their worries and forgo whatever is out of their control. Soon after the song was released, celebrities couldn't help but praise the maestros for their second-to-none vocal prowess.

    https://tribune.com.pk/story/2338826...ebs-fans-agree


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  72. #232
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    By bringing together two opposing forces like Abida Parveen and Naseebo Lal to strike a balance, Xulfi has carried forward Coke Studio’s legacy while adding something new to it.
    Very nice combination.

    I wasn't sure it would work, but they've done a pretty good job.



  73. #233
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    Xulfi in trouble!

    ==

    Coke Studio 14 kicked off on January 14 with a grand showcase featuring Naseebo Lal and Abida Parveen in one song. Tu Jhoom sees Lal and Parveen indulge in a conversation about letting yourself go and opening your heart to the world instead of chasing everything down.

    The song not only went viral within hours of its release but also made the usually dejected Coke Studio fans say that the Coke Studio they lost is back. Tu Jhoom has been credited as written by Adnan Dhool, composed and mixed by Xulfi, arranged and produced by Xulfi and Abdullah Siddiqui.

    Nirmala Maghani, an up-and-coming singer from Umarkot would like to differ to some aspects of the credits list. She has claimed that the melody of the song Tu Jhoom has been lifted from a sample she had sent to Xulfi back in June 2021, while eyeing a slot as featuring artist in Coke Studio 14. Xulfi didn’t reply to any of her messages, which she thought was expected from such a senior musician being suddenly reached by a singer he doesn’t know via WhatsApp. But the moment she heard Tu Jhoom she realised that one of the melodies she had sent has been used in the song without any acknowledgment.

    “The melody is exactly the same,” she told The Express Tribune in a telephonic conversation. “I have been calling Xulfi since I heard the song and after a day he finally responded by saying ‘I didn’t even download your audio file,’ which isn’t true because all my messages were received with blue ticks," Maghani stressed the point that all she wants is recognition and due credit for her work and nothing else. “It’s about recognition of my work and being acknowledged for it, nothing else.”

    Mentor to the rescue

    Culture curator, composer and lyricist Yousaf Salahuddin (Mian Salli), who is a mentor of sorts to Maghani took to social media to display his angst. “The composition has been copied from Nirmala Maghani, who is a singer and composer from Umerkot, Tharparkar, she had sent to Xulfi for consideration in the then-upcoming season of Coke Studio,” he commented. “Zulfiqar (Xulfi) instead changed the words and sold this as his own to Coke Studio. This is highly inappropriate and legal action will be taken very soon.”

    When reached out for comment, Salahuddin confirmed that he sticks to his word on social media. “It’s the same composition. Nirmala had sent this to me way before she had sent it to Xulfi and if you listen closely the Asthai (beginning) is exactly the same followed by minor tweaking of sur etc. In my opinion, this is not an original piece of work but I’ll let the court decide”

    The screen recording shared with The Express Tribune sees a 20-second sample of a melody with different lyrics sounding eerily similar to the first part of Tu Jhoom, so much so that if you change the melody to meet Nirmala’s pitch, instead of Naseebo’s, it almost sounds the same. But naked, unseasoned ears can’t be trusted with such a tricky analysis so we reached out to musicians who explained whether the melody sent to Xulfi by Nirmala can be considered the same as the one used in Tu Jhoom on any legal or artistic grounds.

    Expert ears

    “Okay this is too close to ignore,” said an industry insider who is also a professional musician, requesting anonymity. “You see they can’t make any legal claim in terms of copyright because for Brown’s copyright law seven notes have to be the same and in this case, it's six out of seven notes that are the same. So there’s no aspect of a legal claim but there is a major question about artistic and creative integrity.”

    The musician also went on to add that apart from the strictly theoretical part of the song the overall feel is also very similar but that is similar to a lot of other songs of a folk-inspired style. Another musician found it to be a ‘note by note rip off’ with exactly the same departure and landing.

    “The melody is ridiculously similar. Having said that, sometimes we hear a melody in passing and it ends up showing up in one of our compositions without any conscious attempt, happens to all of us,” he said. “So while there’s no doubt that two melodies are exactly the same it all boils down to the intent, which we can’t tell just by comparing the two listening experiences.”

    All about the timing

    While the intention is almost impossible to decipher in such cases of artistic integrity, what is central to this entire issue is the timing. The screen recording of Nirmala’s conversation with Xulfi shows that she had sent the melody in June and the song was released in the next seven months, making Nirmala’s claim plausible if not believable.

    When reached out for a comment on the matter, Zulfiqar Jabbar Khan (Xulfi) denies any such accusations. "I produce and collaborate in the spirit of inclusivity and my work with Coke Studio holds the same philosophy,” he shared in a written statement with The Express Tribune.

    “I am grateful and humbled to receive many talented artists’ requests for collaboration from all over Pakistan, as have many producers before me. However, I can’t say my work for CS borrowed from such shared samples I received,” he said.

    “I do hope to have the fortune of listening to Nirmala Manghani’s songs in person and to possibly come together for collaboration ahead: our young brilliant artists across Pakistan are our future," concluded the statement.

    Sources have told The Express Tribune that an independent inquiry is also under discussion between both the parties, so is a legal action that will likely end up in a settlement. It is also quite likely that the money boys and anti-Xulfi clan in the business have already jumped the Save Nirmala bandwagon.

    Here’s hoping Nirmala gets the respect, recognition and remuneration she deserves if her claims turn out to be true and so does Xulfi.

    https://tribune.com.pk/story/2339270...u-jhoom-melody


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  74. #234
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    Nirmala Maghani, an up-and-coming singer from Umarkot would like to differ to some aspects of the credits list. She has claimed that the melody of the song Tu Jhoom has been lifted from a sample she had sent to Xulfi back in June 2021, while eyeing a slot as featuring artist in Coke Studio 14. Xulfi didn’t reply to any of her messages, which she thought was expected from such a senior musician being suddenly reached by a singer he doesn’t know via WhatsApp. But the moment she heard Tu Jhoom she realised that one of the melodies she had sent has been used in the song without any acknowledgment.
    It's a lovely tune.

    I hope they haven't stolen it off her and if they have then the original artist deserves credit for her efforts.



  75. #235
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    Coke Studio has refuted charges of stealing Umerkot-based singer Nirmala Maghani’s melody for Tu Jhoom, the first release of their ongoing season, with what the show claims to be video evidence. In a statement accompanying a WhatsApp screen recording shared with The Express Tribune on Wednesday, the show has claimed that season producer Xulfi and associate producer Abdullah Siddiqui had begun working on the song in May, a month before Maghani had allegedly shared her demo with Xulfi.

    On Tuesday, The Express Tribune had reported that Maghani, 20, had accused Xulfi of lifting her melody for the show’s latest release. Maghani claims to have shared a demo with the Coke Studio producer in June, six months before the song featuring Abida Parveen and Naseebo Lal was released. Xulfi had denied the claim, saying that he did not borrow from any samples that he had received.

    The news sparked widespread debate, with many industry bigwigs weighing in on public and private forums, tying the incident to larger issues of intellectual property and the exploitation of underprivileged artists. While some found the two tunes to be too similar, others accused Xulfi’s detractors of starting a smear campaign against him.

    “As I shared with you earlier, I produce and collaborate in the spirit of inclusivity and my work with Coke Studio holds the same philosophy,” Xulfi is quoted as saying in the second statement issued by the show within two days. “My work is not borrowed or without credit, given that what I share with the world is work that relies on the very essence of partnership and collaboration. I hope this to be evident in my entire body of work produced in my career.”

    He further said that Coke Studio 14 was planned with the goal of making Pakistani music heard worldwide. “The aim was to present our music, our young talent and our icons in a way that shows the world what we are capable of, what we stand for as a nation. Our aim was to create a cultural moment of glory for Pakistan.” The producer reiterated that Coke Studio is Pakistan’s biggest cultural export that has consistently brought people together. “And that power is very dear to me and one that I’ve absorbed heavily this season … I look forward to continue working with our brilliant artists, from all over the country; for they truly are the present and future of Pakistani music!” he concluded.

    The WhatsApp recording shows that Xulfi had shared a video with his deputy in May, in which he is humming the asthai of Tu Jhoom over an instrumental track and asking for the latter’s opinion. It is pertinent to mention that The Express Tribune has not been able to verify the accuracy of the screen recordings shared by both Maghani and Coke Studio. When asked why the screen recording from Xulfi’s phone was not shared when Maghani’s claims were first reported, a Coke Studio representative refused to comment.

    Music producer and curator Yousuf Salahuddin, who is a mentor of Maghani, said only the courts can decide who is in the right. “Anything can be manipulated, be it time stamps or something else,” he said. “The only way out of this situation is a forensic audit of the phones of all parties involved.”

    Khalid Khan, CEO of Digital Entertainment World, the company that manages Salahuddin’s digital properties, said their lawyers are assessing the matter and will soon file a complaint in court.

    Maghani, an upcoming artist, has been approaching some of the leading names in the industry for several years in hope of a big break. A few months ago, she collaborated with Laal band to produce her composition of a Faiz Ahmed Faiz poem.

    Since at least the start of 2021, she has shared vocal demos of her songs – including the composition in question – with a number of artists and promoters, some of whom were trying to connect her with those working on different projects. Junoon front man Salman Ahmed said he had introduced Maghani to Xulfi long before the summer.

    Ahmed, who has been using social media platforms to raise a voice for the young musician, said exploitation of artists at the hands of large corporations is a longstanding issue. “They make billions by using music to sell their products and pay a pittance to the artists. The industry must be regulated,” he said.

    Educator and musician Beena Raza, who has also been in touch with Maghani for a while, reached out to The Express Tribune, confirming that the singer had sent her the composition in question, along with other samples as well, before May. “I try to keep in touch with as many from the upcoming lot as I can and Nirmala did send me this sample among others sometime in April 2021,” she said.

    Maghani, who has been overwhelmed with messages of support, thanked those who spoke out for her. “I will accept whatever the court decides,” she said.

    https://tribune.com.pk/story/2339447...video-evidence


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  76. #236
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    Singer Nirmala Maghani’s legal team has sent Xulfi a Rs100 million notice over Coke Studio 14’s Tu Jhoom.

    After Coke Studio 14 premiered with Abida Parveen and Naseebo Lal’s acclaimed duet Tu Jhoom, Nirmala Maghani, a rising singer from Umerkot, came forward claiming that Tu Jhoom’s melody had been lifted from a sample she had sent to Xulfi back in June.

    According to Nirmala, she was hoping to secure a spot at Coke Studio’s continuing edition. Nirmala’s claims were first published in a report in The Express Tribune on January 18, 2022, four days after the premiere. The publication shared Nirmala’s 20-second voicenote as well, which she had sent to Xulfi on WhatsApp.

    In response to Nirmala’s claims, Coke Studio released a statement in which Xulfi denied lifting Nirmala’s melody.

    “My work is not borrowed or without credit, given that what I share with the world is work that relies on the very essence of partnership and collaboration,” said Xulfi. “I hope this to be evident in my entire body of work produced in my career.”

    In a latest development, however, Nirmala’s legal team has served Xulfi a Rs100 million notice. Nirmala had earlier remarked that she was only asking to be given the credits for the melody.

    “Your act of copying the notes and composition of my client’s song Tu Mera Ranjha for Coke Studio 14 performed by singer[s] named Naseebo Lal and Abida Parveen without any legal right and permission from my client is a wilful and intentional infringement of right of my client and is a blatant violation of the copyright laws of Pakistan,” states Nirmala’s lawyer.

    Xulfi has been asked to stop using the composition immediately or Nirmala’s team will initiate legal action against him.

    According to reports, Giraffe Pakistan, the company overseeing Coke Studio 14, has confirmed receiving Nirmala’s notice. Xulfi is the co-founder of Giraffe Pakistan.

    “We have received a notice last evening and our legal team will respond to it through the correct channels in due course,” reads the statement. “As such, we are constrained to limit our responses in deference to the legal process initiated by Ms Maghani.”

    https://www.samaa.tv/entertainment/2...over-tu-jhoom/


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  77. #237
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    The past week has been a rather mind-numbing one for the Pakistani music industry. The usual chit-chat surrounding the new season of Coke Studio was reduced to a murmur after Nirmala Maghani accused CS producer Zulfiqar Jabbar Khan (Xulfi) of stealing her melody and sent him a legal notice worth Rs100 million, claiming copyright infringement. Everyone was caught off-guard, including the usual opponents of the show. Shocked because no one saw this coming and spellbound because what were the chances of a 20-year-old girl from Umerkot taking on the mammoth that everyone tries to dodge head-on.



    This wasn’t like your usual planted rumour, such as how Bilal Maqsood is mean to his talent or how Rohail Hyatt manipulates his into working for him. This was a direct blow to not just Xulfi, who is a much smaller fish in this very big sea, but to the core values that make Coke Studio what it is today; inclusivity, harmony, cosmopolitanism, including a lot more that Rohail quotes in his famous talk at Harvard in which he is asked to justify why he chose a market-driven beverage company to take forward the message and the ‘frequencies’ that made him lose his sight glasses.

    This was a straight-on accusation from a girl that no one knew and now everybody cares about or at least pretends to care about; a kind of home run for an industry or scene that thrives on the idea that since making music is so difficult in this society, artists must be pitied for it. Be it the enterprising veterans who paved the way for the post-Zia ‘liberation’ and modernity or Gen Z artists who are too lost in negating terms such as ‘Kanjar’ and ‘Mirasi’, playing the victim is endemic to the music industry.

    It is this thirst for pity and self-loathing that makes members of the industry take a bite out of anyone and everyone trying to climb the ladder, and the musicians can’t be blamed for acting like wolves when the catch is so little.

    One show, one true crown, and the rest is just an active mess of artists who are handsome enough to act and producers who have survived long enough to crack the jingle formula or make friends in media buying houses. The Hasan Raheems and Shamoon Ismails are rare sparks among this post-modern smoke that haven’t been around long enough for an independent commentator to attribute their work to a formula, let alone a successful one.

    That makes the ultimate crown, the only throne, the seat of the Coke Studio producer, all the more special and Xulfi’s almost teenager-like (reference to the Twitter announcement of his CS nod) excitement to sit on that throne justified.

    But whether you are a king or a pawn, a kingdom built on playing victim can only get you so far. It reduces your status as an influential figure into, if not one playing a victim always crying for help, then a saviour on the lookout for opportunities. As implied in my earlier pieces on the same issue, there’s now a long list of patsies campaigning against Xulfi by standing for Nirmala and we are going to come to them later.

    First, let’s rest the case that is being frequently fed to the press and inner circle of musicians that the entire campaign to seek justice for Nirmala is designed to dethrone Xulfi so that some bigwigs can settle old scores. Sounds incredible and quite believable, but it isn’t true. Not in its entirety, at least.

    As someone who has actively and almost exclusively reported on Coke Studio for the past decade, I can say with surety that worse stories were put into circulation about Strings and Rohail both, and while Strings came into the crosshairs more often, probably because they wanted the limelight, Rohail’s mystique would aid in resolving the stories before they would reach another ear. Both Bilal and Rohail later opened up about these issues in our off-the-record conversations, offering some perspective.

    Xulfi is not unique in that sense, and the way a particular faction of the industry wants you to sympathise with him because his creative process is being affected by all the bad press has no clue what Strings went through, or for that matter, any prominent artist goes through when they are under the limelight. What happened to Xulfi looks so jarring and hits differently because of both the honesty of Nirmala’s accusations and the believability of a formulaic campaign against Xulfi in the era of cancel culture.

    No one doubts that this is affecting his creative process, and we shouldn’t make any attempt at an analysis or critique of the situation by divorcing it from the fact that musicians in Pakistan, especially producers who mostly work behind the scenes, are not used to the kind of weight that being a Coke Studio producer can put on them.

    On a good day, you could be enveloped in the waves of new-found Sufi depth in a live stream between Abida Parveen and Naseebo Lal, and on a bad you could be sinking in your own seat. Xulfi wasn’t prepared for it, the press wasn’t prepared for it and most importantly, even Nirmala didn’t realise that the kind of support she would come to rally will eventually prove to be a burden that she could have, perhaps, done without. She didn’t say anything like that when she spoke to me on Wednesday but she did express rather subtly that this campaign has come to a point of no return and she would not like to disappoint everyone who has stood behind her.

    May God never put you in the shoes of a 20-year-old woman who is being offered all sorts of advice as to why she needs to stay committed or forfeit the case against Xulfi, from the many people who always knew she existed, had listened to her music but never tried to help her as a musician till she became a victim. May God also not put you in the shoes of Xulfi who has the rightful claim of encouraging new and brilliant young talent but is brought in front of the judge by a young, underprivileged musician who once saw hope in him.

    Perhaps a better solution would have been Xulfi reaching out to Nirmala personally, something that I did suggest to Coke Studio’s PR team even before the first news was reported, and sort it out like an elder brother trying to understand his younger sibling. Perhaps the middlemen would have never allowed it to happen given how vulnerable Nirmala’s position in society already is but history tells us that a giant like Coke Studio has settled far more clear-cut and heavier claims with a lot more proficiency and proactivity.

    Rohail Hyatt has already said that had it been up to him, he would have co-credited the song to Nirmala and paid her the artist fee for one song, out of open-heartedness, and anyone who has worked with Rohail can vouch for it actually happening. After all, Abida Parveen did claim copyright to Sanam Marvi’s Hairaan Hua in Coke Studio 11 and CS sorted it with a hefty settlement.

    Even if Nirmala’s claim is misplaced and both her and Xulfi’s melody sounds like so many other melodies, then she is the one who needs to be explained that, not your Twitter followers, not even the press. In fact, if both of them have replicated someone else’s work, then both Nirmala and Xulfi need to be told that, which could lead to thing being settled far more cordially. If Nirmala’s access is being halted by the so many intermediaries speaking on her behalf, then it shouldn’t have been an issue given the muscle Coke Studio is capable of mobilising. If they still fail, then important questions must be raised about intervention projects that take place under cool banners such as ‘Coke Studio Explorer’.

    Why is Coke Studio now relying on senior, reputable community leaders turned politicians such as PTI MNA Lal Maali to spearhead the negotiations on their behalf. Did Coke Studio become so huge that its strength became its own weakness when it was confronted by the most trivial claim, but in the most testing social media ecosystem? What good are all the Gen Z brand and marketing teams if they can’t help Nirmala and Xulfi sit at the table together? The onus is not just on Xulfi, but all the people making strategy decisions at Coca Cola.

    On the other hand, musician WhatsApp groups are filled with stories of musicians blaming the press and the veterans who guided Nirmala for being in the wrong, and this lot is being called out by others for having a vested interest in Xulfi and CS. What was essentially a girl’s cry for recognition has now morphed into a battle between artist vs corporation, corruption vs truth and veteran gurus vs Gen Z gurus, none of which has to do with Nirmala and none of what she is actually aware of. Before we move forward please do remember that all Nirmala ever wanted was ‘credit and recognition’ before she ended up speaking in the language of her legal team.

    As discussed before, Nirmala had been sending her music to a number of people before she had sent it to Xulfi. When she started connecting with the industry, she was a teenager, born to the Bajeer community of Hindus who are known for their simple lifestyle and their absolute love for the arts, especially music. No one recites Kabir the way they sing his verses and no one renders Mirabai the way they do, but, at the same time, their place in society makes them easily impressionable. Do them a favour and they will be indebted for ages; this humility is not manufactured, neither is it candy wrapped for any ‘folk mapping’ endeavour led by the state. They are so easily influenced that half of the mainstream artists she mentioned in our conversation she said she respected like her family elders, and Yousaf Sallahudin aka Mian Salli like her Abba or father.

    What is also important to note is that before Nirmala reached out to the press, Mian Salli, who also produces VIRSA for PTV had already posted about Xulfi’s song being a rip-off of Nirmala’s melody under an Instagram post. He was the first one to throw weight behind Nirmala but no one can say for sure if Nirmala decided to pursue this issue with unexpected dedication in order to throw weight behind her mentor.

    It is very common in the Guru-Shisha culture for disciples to take up their master’s burden as a part of the latter’s ageing process but, as I said before, the burden gets even heavier when you belong to a community that is raised with the ethos of service, and one that no one really cares about. No one is doubting Mian Salli or Nirmala’s intention, but given the precarity of the situation, and how this issue has snowballed into a lot more than just copyright infringement, it is necessary to put things in perspective and to understand the various power dynamics at play. You’ll be a fool to see it as merely an intellectual property dispute, perhaps even Nirmala sees more than that now, but she’ll be damned if she does and damned if she doesn’t.

    Nirmala has already recorded and released a song with the Marxist band Laal and Taimur Rehman has so far voiced muted support for Nirmala against Xulfi. There’s a fair chance that Taimur Rehman and co know it better than many others how Nirmala is an ant in this battle of elephants that are guiding her accordingly. If they are not, they must. That’ll be of great help to Nirmala.

    She has also recorded a song with Ali Zafar on her trip to Lahore and mainstream producers such as Sahir Ali Bagga have been aware of her music long before her fight with Coke Studio started.

    So, while the insiders terming this as yet ‘another Ali Zafar ploy’ against Xulfi after he ‘orchestrated a negative PR campaign following the PSL Anthem’ have a reason to worry, some of their worries may actually be misplaced. Zafar has actually recorded a song with Nirmala, which was a while back, but knowing Zafar’s rampage on YouTube these days, you never know if he has decided to release that song just now. However, the singer will be conducting a peaceful, healthy exchange of ideas regarding the Coke Studio issue and PSL anthem on his Facebook page right after Friday prayers today, which is also around the time Coke Studio 14 usually releases new music. What if he announces a new song with Nirmala?

    Yes, it is never in good taste to take advantage of an opportunity when the people involved are in a vulnerable position, It makes your kindest intentions look like an extraordinary attempt to prey on someone’s misery. But, what if Nirmala sees this as the break she had always been waiting for regardless of the headspace she is in? What if she considers it to be an honour to partake in a song with one of Pakistan’s biggest stars especially if he has been a patron of sorts of hers even before her name started trending on Twitter? What if she doesn’t care about the mainstream discourse and is happy to get a chance she so desperately had been seeking by sending her music to everyone? What if Mian Salli ends up recording an entire state-funded tribute to Iqbal featuring Nirmala produced by Bagga? Regardless of how you frame this situation or the supposed opportunists in this scenario, the music industry holds no right to judge either.

    Where were all the now-saviours of Nirmala who previously thought she was a bad singer and needed direction? Did they ever give her any direction? Did they ever follow up on her compositions apart from sharing them with journalists as evidence both for and against Xulfi? Did they ever reach out to the so many unsung maestros of Umerkot without an exoticising scheme in mind that a cookie or a beverage brand would buy? Did any of them ever think of Nirmala beyond a set piece that will complete the inclusivity package on a Pakistan Day tableau? Not they did not. Nirmala, as someone seeking recognition for her work, would have bought into all of these offerings with a blindfold on, regardless of the stereotyping and appropriation they would have entailed.

    In trying to play the victim in a society that supposedly has no breathing space for musicians, but allows them room enough to get chased by the FBR over tax evasions, your privileged, mainstream, urban lot, is now abusing the real victims of the system they are very much a part of. One wonders with what intention these musicians even questioning whether Nirmala’s music is original or why she should not approach the case legally or why she should have thought twice before taking a stand against Xulfi.

    Regardless of what the outcome of Nirmala’s legal notice to Xulfi is, one thing that can be said for sure is that Nirmala is a litmus test that this industry deserves and continues to fail at. That everyone should follow the Abida Parveen route of mastering the package-friendly formula so rigorously, that they are able to work on their own terms, and their successors can continue to benefit from it. Call it a Sufi-turning-capitalist, but that is still more honest than artists working like feudal lords.



    https://tribune.com.pk/story/2340838...unity-for-some


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  78. #238
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    one of the best coke studio songs I've heard in years, the lyricism complemented by the broad cinematic soundscape, I had very low hopes for CS but this track has gone to change that


  79. #239
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    Seems to be some cracking tunes this time around.

    Better than recent editions.



  80. #240
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    And I have heard they stole some production of a girl from interior Sindh.

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