Stories about coke studio

Concerts in Karachi: Bring back fun to this city!

I was at a Strings concert a few days ago. It was one of those fancy sit down affairs, with hideous white sofas and people taking selfies of each other to upload on social media. Bilal Maqsood began singing “mera bichra yaar” and the LCD screens behind him played a very old video from the 1990s. It was then that it hit me. Suddenly I wasn’t nodding and smiling politely to the music, but in a half built amphitheatre, I was screaming as the crème de la crème of the urban rock phenomena in Pakistan belted out their numbers. Coming up… ...

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Coke Studio vs Nescafe Basement – is there a winner?

Finally, the most awaited season of Coke Studio is on air. However, like last year, it seems like Coke Studio has not been able to ignite the same interest in people like it did in the first two seasons. Having said that, with just one episode on air, it is probably too early to determine the success of this season. What is different this time however, is that Coke Studio seems to have competition – and that too, young and fresh competition – in the form of Nescafe Basement. This show has been produced by Zulfiqar Jabbar Khan, better known as Zulfi, who used to be a part of Entity Paradigm (EP) and is currently in the band Call. ...

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Why Babu Bhai, Ali Azmat?

It finally happened! Ali Azmat’s track was uploaded in the first episode of Coke Studio Season 6. Grinning in excitement, I clicked on the link only to hear this in a low monotone: “Babu Bhai, Babu Bhai, Babu Bhai, Babu Bhai, Babu Bhai, Babu Bhai, Babu Bhai, Babu Bhai.” Yes, that is what Ali Azmat’s new song – or rather, an attempt to a song – sounded like. I could almost feel blood dripping from my ears and all I wanted to do was block out the song, if you could call it that. Quite frankly, it seemed more like musical agony ...

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3 reasons I will watch Coke Studio Season 6

There are a few things a Pakistani can be proud of and music tops the list. From the eternal Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan to the evergreen Noor Jehan; from the refreshing Nazia Hasan to the quirky Hadiqa Kiani; from the cheery Alamgir to the likes of Ali Azmat, Ali Zafar et al; from the soulful Alan Fakir to the ear soothing Mekaal Hasan Band and Fuzon, we’ve got it all! In fact, anyone would give their Led Zeppelin guitars for the talent Pakistan has. The newest and the most successful (probably after Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan) addition to the list ...

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German glue, pinching ears and music — Zoe Viccaji’s favourite things

You may not know this about her, but Zoe Viccaji loves to put German glue on her hands and peel it off; she also loves to pinch ears, but her greatest love remains music. At the age of 15, when most of her teenage friends had the high-school blues, Zoe wrote songs for her friends and performed at open mic sessions as a hobby. She joined the college choir and majored in Arts and Sociology; even turned towards advertising for two years post-college, only to return to her first love – music. Born in Kharian to a Parsi father and a ...

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Oh summer, thou art fabulous!

With the scorching heat and indefinite amounts of loadshedding hours, summer is not exactly the best of seasons here in Pakistan.  However, there is always a silver lining and in spite of such gruesome circumstances, there are always reasons to shun away the cynicism that the three hours of loadshedding might bring. Here are just a few of them. The musical treats by “Coke Studio” No matter what the naysayers might say, “Coke Studio” is and will remain one of the best things to have ever happened to the Pakistani music industry. Never in the history of Pakistani music have people followed folk and ...

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The good, the bad and the ugly of Coke Studio episode 3

For our music industry, “Coke Studio” is like a gemstone that is emitting rays of hope for music lovers all over Pakistan. Overall, it would be completely fair to suggest that “Coke Studio” is innovative music to everyone’s ears.  However, season five has received a lot of criticism; according to listeners and viewers, this time “Coke Studio” has failed to cater to their music appetite and this outcome might well be considered a musical faux pas. Let us go through the comments and reviews of our music experts and fans regarding a recent episode of “Coke Studio” to decide whether this statement holds any truth ...

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Yes, I don’t watch TV

The last time I took a five week break from writing my exams, Osama Bin Laden was found and killed in Abbottabad. The whole world oohed and aahed. Did anything that exciting happen this time around? Nope. Same old, same old. The chief justice’s son accepts bribes and we all get out our popcorn buckets for another showdown. Becky Anderson wins the prize for the most loathed CNN anchor in Pakistani CNN viewership history. And I won a bet with my Dadi (grandmother), who was convinced that Mubashir Lucman was the fountain of all TV holy wisdom until he finally, ...

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Coke Studio is making a mockery out of our culture

At the risk of sounding judgemental, let me state flat out that “Coke Studio” is the place where a revitalisation of folk culture is endeavoured by slaughtering it. A not-so-thoughtful cogitation, in this case, has led people to believe that through commercialism a win-win situation can be achieved to the benefit and amusement of all the stakeholders, i.e. the producers, the conglomerate and the MTV generation. The idea clicked. The “Coke Studio” fad is running amok. Social media is replete with ‘Naulakha Charkhas’ and ‘Jugni’. Rohail Hayat seems to have acquired the status of ‘god of music’. Rambling on about the latest episode of “Coke Studio”, ...

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Coke Studio should try being less like itself

After the great letdown of a listless and overproduced episode one, one wondered if episode two of Coke Studio would be any better. Bilal Khan would be there with his viral, pop appeal, Atif Aslam, the top star of the industry with a solo track, and perhaps this time around, one hoped, some edgier material might sneak through. And one track most remarkably did. Khabaram Raseeda by Fareed Ayaz and Abu Muhammad is stunning. It is at its basic best – passionate, raw qawwali and the Coke treatment for once adds much to it. It seems ...

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