Saturday, December 30, 2006

Music and 2006


Year 2006 and the Pakistani music industry

We asked the musicians about the music scene in 2006, their activities during the year, and what they have planned for 2007. Here's what they had to say:

Maaz Maudood (Kaavish, co-vocalist)
As time is progressing, the music industry of Pakistan is reaching new heights of creativity and success. 2006, in my eyes, was the best musical year ever, with the advent of so many different channels - like Play TV, Aag TV, and MTV Pakistan - who are promoting musicians not only in the mainstream, but also in the underground scene. All these factors prove to be a source of motivation for musicians because when we started off, there used to be one music channel and there was a major lack of exposure.
2006 has produced a lot of new and extremely talented artists who have come out with their debut videos, like Siege, Ali Khan, etc. The best part is that the quality and standard of our music videos has improved tremendously this year as well. Overall, it's been a good year for the musicians as well as the music lovers.
The year has proved to be a lucrative year for Kaavish. We came out with our second video, and the major source of motivation for us was the TMA's, where we got the award for the 'Best Rising Stars'. Our perspective towards work totally changed after that. We started taking it more seriously and totally dedicated ourselves to this purpose. This year, we managed to almost complete the entire album and are looking forward to the next year for the launch. At the beginning of the year, we plan to release our third video, and right after Muharram, we plan on launching our album. And after that, we hope to look forward to a good year.

Junaid Khan (Call, vocalist)
The start of year 2006 was very crucial as our album was just two months old in the market, and it was the time when the fate of the album was actually going to emerge. It's a good thing that we got through that quite well, as 'Jilawatan' topped the charts for eight consecutive weeks and is still among the top five albums. 2006 gave Call the place that we wanted in people's minds, and we are planning to reach more hearts in the coming year.

Atif Aslam
Our music industry has definitely touched new heights in terms of technicalities and videos, and now the international market knows that Pakistani music is second to none. In 2006, I recorded my second album for international launch, and apart from this, I performed at various concerts and went on two world tours. In 2007, I'm planning to grab more love and appreciation from my beloved fans.

Musti (Roxen, vocalist)
The year 2006 with respect to our music industry was not bad actually. Lots of new talent came up, and even when channels weren't supporting them, they still did their best. But let's just hope for the best, as channels like MTV and Aag are here now. As far as good albums are concerned, 'Jilawatan' by Call was too good, especially for rock listeners like me.We released our new video 'Sapnay', revamping Roxen, and had loads of studio recordings, and finally released our debut album, 'Rozen-e-Deewar'. In 2007, we plan to release our new video, and we have a Dubai tour scheduled for January. The band also has a couple of Bollywood projects lined up, scheduled to be released in February. We have an India tour in March, with loads more to follow, InshaAllah.

Sam (Akash, lead vocalist and guitarist)
2006 in terms of business was bad for most of the artists/musicians. Though some new music channels were introduced, the music scene wasn't very active; only a couple of albums were highlighted throughout the year, and most of the other albums never got any projection.
Akash released two videos in 2006 - 'Ji Liya' directed by Asiph Mahmood and 'Hum Aazad Hain' directed by Murzie - and both were quite well received. In 2006, we spent most of our time in our studio (PMR Studios) working on our debut album 'Aks'. We have tried to experiment a lot in our album by recording live Harmonium, violins, sitar and flute. In 2007 we plan to release our debut album, and then have concerts/gigs/tours. We hope 2007 is good for all our musicians in terms of business.

Farabi Hassan (Raeth, guitarist)
Basically, we did it all in 2006! We launched our first single 'Bhula Do' in early June. It started moving up the charts pretty quickly and topped the charts for a while. We became the first and the youngest band to be signed by Universal Records. Our album was launched in September in parallel in UK, USA, Canada, UAE, India and Pakistan, and, according to authentic charts, it has been topping all non-film acts all over the sub-continent. Raeth was artist of the month on both Channel V and MTV India last month. We also released our new single 'Tumharey Liyeah', the video for which was shot in India. The song is already the 'Top Gana' on MTV, just a week after its release. In 2007, Raeth plans to release the third video and finalize tours.
The Pakistani music scene is growing and is becoming more competitive day by day, and it's hard to make a mark these days. Raeth is currently promoting their album in Pakistan as it has already captured simultaneous platforms on all four music channels, including MTV Pakistan, Play TV, The Musik and Aag.

Nausher Javed (Inteha, guitarist)
2006 was promising and progressive in various respects. First of all, a lot of new talent has come up this year, thus creating an atmosphere of competition and progress, which is a positive sign for the music industry. Also, the emergence of new music channels was seen this year, which shows the growing strength of the music scene in Pakistan. In 2006, Inteha's main focus was the recording and completion of our debut album, which has been titled 'Kehna Chahta Hoon'. The album is now almost completed and all the production and mastering is being done at the Xth Harmonic studio by Xulfi. A couple of videos supporting the launch of the album have also been shot from which the video of the track 'Anjaana' will be released by the end of the year. Inteha has planned to release their debut album world wide in the first quarter of 2007 and has also scheduled a concert tour programme in the second quarter. Also, the band will be making music for an Indian movie, details of which will be finalized in early 2007.

Farhan Ali (Call, bassist)
In 2006, we performed in Qatar and Dubai. We were supposed to tour America, Canada and India, which we ultimately didn't. The response we got to the first Call album, which was released at the end of 2005, was great. We also did a song for an Indian movie, and had many gigs in Pakistan. The band won the TMA award for 'Most Wanted Band' of 2006. Next year, a lot more is planned, including the Channel V summit in India.

- By Sameen Amer

Us Magazine, The News - 29th December 2006

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