Hyderabad: The author of one of the best all-time selling books ‘The Prophet’, Gibran Kahlil Gibran once said, “Music is the language of the spirit. It opens the secret of life bringing peace, abolishing strife.” And we find this quote from a Lebanese-American writer, poet, and visual artist very relevant if we talk about the combination of Asian musicians (especially Pakistani and Indian) and Pakistani singers.
Erstwhile British India was divided into Pakistan and India and this division created barriers in the hearts of people across both sides. The hate for each other grew constantly until a few Bollywood personalities and Pakistani singers started working together. Prominent personalities associated with cinema tried their hand at bringing Pakistani singers to the studios of Mumbai.
After the release of Alam Ara, it was felt that songs should be included in the movies to show the romantic angle of the heroes. From Noor Jehan to Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and Atif Aslam, Indo-Pak musical collaborations were always termed as ‘masterpieces’ by the audiences.
So, here in this write-up, we will make you scroll through the list of top singers who did justice to the lyrics of famous poets.
Pakistani singers and musicians are known for their soul-searing voices and Reshma was one among them. The renowned folk singer of Pakistan had her fans still in India.
You will find almost every music lover in India chanting ”Lambi Judai’ if you ever talk about Reshma in front of him/ her. Indian film director, producer, and screenwriter Subash Ghai used her famous song ‘Lumbi Judai’ in the movie Hero.
Her other famous songs include ‘Laal Meri Pat Rakhio’, ‘Dama Dam Mast Kalander’, and ‘Ankhiyan No Rehen De’. Some of her songs were later recomposed in other singers voices after her death.
2. Mehdi Hassan Khan
The Guru Ji of various famous Ghazal singers, Mehdi Hassan Khan is counted among the greatest and most influential Ghazal singers. He first sang a Ghazal ”Jis Ne Mere Dil Ko Dard Diya” for the film Susral (1962).
Along with famous Indian singer Lata Mangeshkar, he sang a famous Ghazal ‘Tera Milana’ which was released by HMV. Medhi Hassan Khan is still known as one of the top Ghazal singer across the border.
3. Noor Jehan
Also known by her honorific title Malika-e-Tarannum, Noor Jehan is considered as synonym to beauty still in Pakistan. If someone looks beautiful, people usually call her ‘Noor Jehan’ there. Lord had not only renowned her with beauty but she was having great acting skills and a soulful voice.
As an actor, she shared the screen with Pran and Sunil Dutt in Khandan (1962).
She first sang a song for the Pakistani film ‘Chann Wey’ in 1951. She collaborated with Shanta Apte in the movie Duhai (1943) and Salma (1960).
4. Ustad Ghulam Ali
Disciple of Bade Ghulam Ali Khan, Ustad Ghulam Ali is a Pakistani Ghazal singer of the ‘Patiala Gharana’. The singer got famous just after he was introduced by BR Chopra to Hindi cinema in 1982. Not only those who are heartbroken in love but almost every Hindi and Urdu speaking person still listen to Ghulam Ali’s ‘chupke chupke raat din’ Ghazal to recall old golden days. He sang this all-time best Ghazal in the movie Nikaah.
His other popular Ghazals include ‘Hungama hain kyun barpa’, Heer, and ‘Kabhi neki mein mujhe’.
5. Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan
The King of Qawwali, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan is almost everyone’s favourite. The way of delivering the lyrics by him is very unique. He is still considered one of the greatest voices ever.
He sang for the movies Kachche Dhaage and Aur Pyaar Ho Gaya. He sang ‘’saaya bhi saath jab chodd jaye” in the year 1999 for the movie ‘Dillagi’. His ‘Dulhe ka sehra’ song from Dhadkan movie which stars Sunil Shetty and Akshay Kumar in lead roles are still popular in India.
6. Adnan Sami
Adnan Sami, who is now an Indian citizen started his career with the album ‘Kabhi Toh Nazar Milao’ in 2000.
Bhar Do Jholi Meri (Barjangi Bhaijaan), Noor E Khuda (My Khan is Khan), Sun Zara (Lucky), Meter Down (Taxi no. 9211) and Kiss Me Baby (Garam Masala) are some of his most loved songs.
7. Shafqat Amanat Ali
The man with a magical voice is missed by Indians and whenever he performs at any event, Indian social media users enjoy his performances on various social media platforms as he can’t perform in India because of the ban on Pakistani artists.
The ‘Mitwa’ song from the movie Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna was his first song he sang for any Indian film and since then Indian fans are longing to see him singing for more and more Bollywood movies.
You will find his song Mora Saiyyan from his album Khamaj, Aakhon Ke Sagar, Yeh Honsla (Dor), Dil Daara (Ra One), Tu Hi Mera (Jannat 2), Teri Jhuki Nazaar (Murder 3) etc,. in everyone’s digital archive in India.
8. Rahat Fateh Ali Khan
The student of legendary Nusrat Ali Khan, Rahat Ali Khan made his Bollywood debut with the song ‘Mann Ki Lagan’ from Paap (2003).
His other hits include, Jiya Dhadak Dhadak Jaye (Kalyug), Naina (Omkara), Ore Piya (Aja Nachle), Dil Toh Bachha Hai Ji (Ishqiya) and Ishq Risk (Mere Brother Ki Dulhan).
9. Ali Zafar
Ali Zafar is a Pakistani actor and singer who acted in many Bollywood films. With ‘Channo’ from his album Huqa Pani, he got famous across the border.
Listen to his songs, Nakhriley (Kill Dill), Dhichkyaaon Dhoom Dhoom (Chashme baddoor), Madhubala (Mere Brother Ki Dulhan).
10. Atif Aslam
We might be not doing justice while admiring the voice of Atif Aslam, but all we can say is ‘He is a living legend’ whom Bollywood will miss every time. He is the only Pakistan singer who was famous across border before making his Bollywood debut.
Since he was a member of the famous Pakistani band ‘Jal’, he was loved in India from that time. He started his Bollywood journey with Aadat (Kalyug).
His notable songs are Jeena Jeena (Badlapur), Woh Lamhe (Zeher), Ore Piya (Tere Naal Love Ho Gaya), Pehli Nazar Mein (Race), Be Intehaan (Race 2), Tere Bin (Bas Ek Pal).
Listen to his album Doorie and feel the his amazing voice.
Undoubtedly, their talent and charisma continue to inspire and entertain fans across the border, and they will surely continue to be beloved by Indian audiences for years to come.