This a poet who has not emerged from his ivory tower and who has, by choice, no published book of verse to his credit; whose poetry is relatively unknown in popular poetic forums and Mushairas.
Yet, at private gatherings, whenever he has occasionally shared his ghazals, he has been well appreciated. Discerning academics and poets have responded very positively to his shairi. So have well known ghazal singers.
Steeped in the tradition of Urdu Poetry by virtue of background, enriched by an academic grounding in English Literature, and labouring under an inborn talent and sensibility that was swelling within, his talent was craving for release. It was time to share his poetic treasure trove but in a manner that would be novel and would have the widest possible range and reach. It was important to touch the minds and the hearts of all those who would understand and appreciate. He knew his worth. He recognized his talent. He had coined his first couplet at the age of three.
His poetic name or pseudonym, FARAZ, is the same as his first name, and is reminiscent of the famed Pakistani poet Ahmed Faraz. His desire? To be known and remembered as the Faraz of India.
The present bouquet of voices, influences, styles and gharanas includes:
- Devi Murthy of Hyderabad [Honored with several Awards including Malika-e Ghazal, Ghazal dar Ghazal]
- Zameer Ahmed [A scion of the Delhi Gharana and Disciple of Ustad Wazir Hussain Khan and Ustad Zaheer Khan Sahib]
Devi Murthy hails from a reputed family of Vainikas and carnatac classical singers of Andhra Pradesh. The youngest daughter of famous veena Maestro Late Shri Emana Sankara Sastry, former Producer Emeritus of AIR & Doordarshan, branched off into Ghazal singing during her formative years, and this is where she created a niche for herself. Devi has been bestowed with various honours and titles such as Ghazal Sougandhika, Ghazal dar Ghazal, Maleka e Ghazal, and Pearl of Hyderabad, for her delectable and mellifluous rendering of the Urdu poetic verse. Devi enthralls her audience with her depth, her range, and complete command over form and content. The Ragas are like putty in her hands, to be moulded according to the manifold dimensions and demands of Shairi.
Devi has couched the verses in a musical framework which is revealing and luminous of specific undercurrents of meaning, She has, through her instinctive and knowledge based comprehension of poetry, created a musical interpretation of the poet's Ghazals which is a feat by any standards. Devi is also a leading light of Ghazals India, and the reason why we are here today.
Zameer Ahmed is a highly versatile though sometimes erratic performer, who hails from the well known Dilli gharana .Zameer, received his early training in Classical and semi-classical music from Ustad Wazir Hussein Khan. Other notable mentors include, Ustaad Zahoor k
Khan Sahib, and Ustad Mohammed Ali Sahib. Zameer possesses an exceptionally gifted voice, which on account of sheer range and remarkable sensitivity, can be compared with the best in the field. On his day Zameer can be superlative. In this Collective Album, entitled Jaam-e jam, his performance has touched rare levels of excellence.
This talented sister of popular singer, Bhupender Singh, received her initial training in classical vocal from Pandit Buadullji Lahore Waley and Shri Suraj Prakash.Thereafter she came under the tutelage of the famous disciple of Begum Akhtar, Shanti Hiranand. Charanjit effortlessly scales notes, both high and low to produce in her deep resonant voice; the Begum’s unique artistic ethos. Her rendering is unique and inimitable and flawless.
The most well known disciple of Begum Akhtar has endeavoured to maintain the Begum’s heritage of true Ghazal gayaki, Thumri and Dadra. Honoured with numerous awards such as the Padmashree, the Urdu and the Hindi Awards, the Sahitya Kala Parishad Award, Shanti ji has kept alive the glorious tradition of the classical Indian Ghazal. She has never compromised with the pristine purity of the original. Her selection of poetry has been tasteful and immaculate befitting her Mentor.