26/11 has not dented its popularity in India – Pakistani band

December 11, 2009

Pakistani band Strings 200x132New Delhi, Performing in India for the first time after the 26/11 Mumbai attacks last year, Pakistani band Strings said the terror attacks have not affected their popularity here nor did it affect the sale of their music albums.

“The terror attacks did not affect the response of the people towards us,” Bilal Maqsood, the main member of the pop band, told IANS before its performance at the picturesque Purana Qila in Delhi Friday night.

“Music has no boundaries. Once you hear a song, it is the melody of that song that captures your heart and you forget the divide between Pakistan and India,” he said.

Faisal Kapadia, the lead vocalist of the band, added: “We have been getting a tremendous response for all our albums from the Indian audiences and we hope it continues that way.”

Hugely popular in India, Strings has given a number of performances here. Among their well known numbers are “Duur”, “Dhaani” and “Koi Aane Wala Hai”.

To avoid any repercussions of the 26/11, the band called off one of its concerts in Pune last December, right after the attacks in Mumbai that left 166 people killed.

“Though we did have a concert Dec 1 last year in Pune, we decided to cancel it since we felt the atmosphere was very tense and people were not in the frame of mind to enjoy the music. The wounds of terror attacks were still very fresh,” Faisal said.

Deeply affected by the terror situation in their own country, they are now composing a patriotic song on the theme.

Bilal, who has penned the lyrics of the song, “Humko khudi kuch karna padega”, said: “It’s the whole region, including Pakistan, that has been inflicted by these terror attacks and our song tries to encourage people to take the string of their destiny in their own hands without blaming other people for the mess around.”

The song will be composed with Atif Aslam, another popular Pakistani singer, in the next few months.

Dispelling myths that it’s only qawwalis and Sufi music that interests people in Pakistan, the duo said that 90 percent of the music playing in the television there is either pop or Bollywood.

Talking about their music, Faisal said the main reason their songs catch on with the crowds is they are honest.

“Our songs are straight from the heart. You can have a lot of thumping and banging but ultimately melody is the king. Along with meaningful lyrics,” Faisal said.

“And the signature sound of the band which is so unique. The harmony that we have amongst us is ultimately translated into the sound that we create and that attracts people. Our performances are very spontaneous, according to the mood of the audience,” he added.

Strings is one of the 15 bands who will perform in Delhi for three days starting Friday as a part of the South Asian Bands Festival.



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