The young Shahzad Adeel has revolutionized music in Afghanistan. He wants to continue with same enthusiasm and keep entertaining millions of his fans
At a young age, he has captured the imagination of country with his mellifluous music. Shehzad Adeel is a household name in Afghanistan. He had his early education in Kabul, and like millions of Afghans, he too left with his family for Pakistan when the civil war broke out in Afghanistan. His family, like other refugees, had to struggle hard in Pakistan. He completed his secondary education at Ariana High School in Peshawar City, before he returned to his home country. He recently graduated from from Law and Political Science.
His tryst with singing started four year ago. “I always had the inclination for music and singing and it is something I am passionate about,” says Adeel. Like in any conservative society where music and singing are considered a taboo, he also faced opposition early on. “When I decided to become a singer, my family was not comfortable with the idea, they tried to dissuade me from it,” says the young prodigy. “But, they changed their mind after seeing the tremendous support and love I was getting from people all around and that convinced me that no goal is impossible to achieve if you are determined enough.”
For professional singers, training and apprenticeship is a prerequisite. “Before you dabble with singing, you have to understand the nuances and nitty-gritty of music, and it has to be a consummate training where you dedicate your heart and soul,” says Adeel. He started taking music lessons from Bawra, an Indian musician and when he developed a firm grip over basics, he went to learn classical music from Momtaz Ahmad Nawabi. “So, before starting something, you need to have a strong foundation, so that your career does not stand on a shaky ground.”
In a place like Afghanistan, where war and violence dominate the popular discourse, music can facilitate peace and order, believes Adeel. “I believe music has the power to heal wounds and connect hearts and my dream is to see peaceful and united Afghanistan.” Adeel says he sing for the people of his country. “I sing for my homeland, for my people and for every Afghan citizen around the world. It is my way of serving my country and I will continue doing it.”
Adeel released his first song ‘Che Goyam Man’ in January 2009. The song instantly became a chart-buster, and was played on major radio channels like Tapesh FM 97.1, Arman FM 98.1, City FM, Ariana FM, Maiwand FM and Nawa FM.
“Releasing the first song was a big moment for me, but it took me a while to realize I had finally arrived on the big stage,” says the young singer with hint of modesty. All his songs, says Adeel, convey message of love and peace and are aimed at youth. “There was only classical music in vogue and youth find it a little harder to understand that, so I wanted to give them something they can connect with,” he says.
However, he says, Afghan music industry has come a long way. “Some local music bands led by young musicians have played key role in this renaissance. There was a pop music band xxxx that revolutionized new-age music in this country.”
Some famous Afghan singers like Zahir Howaida and Aziz Ashna, he says, also played a pivotal role in popularizing pop music in Afghanistan. Agha Mohammad Kargar, Ahmad Shaker, Chatram Sani, Sayed Habib Alavi, Kabir Howaida and Younus Moseqyar were the famous proponents of new-age pop music in Afghanistan. Chatram Sani, 15, was the younger member of the group and Aziz Ashna, 23, was the oldest member.
In pop music, says Adeel, the effectiveness of melody depends on the lyrics and composition. “The first pop music group of Afghanistan used poetries collected from Afghan and Iranian magazines. Then they started writing their own songs.”
Adeel released his first song ‘Che Goyam Man’ in January 2009. The song instantly became a chart-buster, and was played on major radio channels like Tapesh FM 97.1, Arman FM 98.1, City FM, Ariana FM, Maiwand FM and Nawa FM