Music is spiritual and eternal: Saami
Chandigarh: Pakistan`s legendary classical vocalist Ustad Naseeruddin Saami feels that music can help spread peace and love between the two countries.
"Music has great power. It can heal even deepest of wounds," the legendary `Khayal` vocalist said, stressing that it could help bring the people of India and Pakistan together.
"Hum sur kay saath baat kartey hein (we talk through our music)," Saami, who was in India for about a month giving performances, told reporters.
He was in the country on the invitation of Society for Promotion of Indian Classical Music and Culture (SPICMACAY).
The 66-year-old `Khayal` singer of the `Dilli Gharana` says that classical singing should be promoted among the younger generation.
"I feel classical singing has great powers. It can not only help bring the people of the two nations together, but it can also help wean away our younger generation from the ills afflicting the modern society," he said.
He said that the present generation was madly after Western music because "we do not teach them our own music forms. We need to cultivate a taste for these forms among the youth".
"It is not that the younger generation does not want to learn these forms. When I was in Cuttack for a performance, I was pleasantly surprised to see a group of about 1500 people, mostly youngsters, who were keen to know more about Khayal and other forms of classical singing," he said.
Speaking about his childhood days, Saami said he obtained training from his late uncle, the eminent Munshi Raziuddin.
He also obtained further training under the elders of the Dilli Gharana, Sardar Khan, Pyaray Khan and Iftikhar Ahmed Khan.
Saami attaches great importance to the historic traditions of his art. His style of singing is called `Shudh Bani`.
"I am a strict practitioner of my inherited musical philosophy that of maintaining and believing in the purity of `Sur` (melody of notes) because Ragas demand Sur," said Saami, who performs other elements of classical music like Thumri, Sadra and Kajri with versatility, which is distinctive of his Gharana.
Saami said that his ancestors founded the school of music known as the "Dilli Gharana" while his ancestor Miyan Samaat had the privilege of being the disciple of Hazrat Amir Khusrao.
"I was born in Delhi and lost my parents early. My uncle groomed me. We are closely related to another great musician Qutub Baksh, also known as Ustad Tan Ras Khan, the legendary composer and vocalist of the Dilli school, who perfectly blended various aspects of the Khayal," he said.