The reasons why Entertainment-Deprived Pakistan badly needs Musical Concerts.
Pakistani Music has always been special in this part of the world. From Ghazal singer to Pop musicians to rock vocalists with their mind blowing guitar riffs, Pakistani music has always had something ‘extra’ to offer. Something that neighbouring Bollywood didn’t ever have as all they have is Filmy music that too now is contaminated with ‘Masala Item Numbers’ with cheap lyrics.
Although, Pakistani music had always that X-Factor with it and still do but with time it’s fading away while losing its grip on the music lovers. And that is not the only sad part; the melancholy that follows this situation is the growing fondness for Indian music among Pakistanis with no space left for Pakistan’s typical awesomeness through musical instruments.
There are definitely many factors that add to it but the most important two are the less production of Pakistani musical albums and the lack of projection of them; i.e legal distribution and musical Concerts for public.
Pakistan’s fraught security situation, dilapidated live music scene, a ban on YouTube (only recently lifted) and the lack of labels releasing new albums made music to “Survive” in the country even more challenging let alone the concerts.
Yes, in last decade the security situation of Pakistan has been seeing ups and down and organising concerts, which could possibly generate revenue, is a huge and risky undertaking.
But this should not be the pretext of not having the immense source of entertainment for music lovers. A live music is something that transforms the experience of music into soulful existence of ones being.
A lot of music that truly finds its reach and makes an impact is due to its sheer brilliance. And reach it does, far and wide. Unfortunately, in our country, it only reaches to social media with some Facebook pages promoting the talent that deserves huge audience and appreciation to boom into something more beautiful as talent.
Up until 2009, musical festivals, concerts and gigs would take place regularly in; be it an Ali Zafar concert at the open air theatre in Shakarparian, Entity Paradigm performing at a college or Atif Aslam singing at JimKhana. International acts such as RDB, Raghav, Akcent and Edward Maya also performed before delighted audiences.
With the current security environment, the state has made it very difficult to issue no-objection certificates (NOCs) to those interested in holding such events publicly. Slowly but surely, funfairs, festivals and musical gatherings are disappearing from view.
However, ironically, same or more amount of public is gathered on political Jaslsas and same state authorizes them to hold such huge public gatherings. I am not against these political gatherings but at the same I wonder that lives of those attending these Jalsas are as precious as those who would attend musical concerts.
State makes a lot of effort to make these political gatherings a fool proof security arena then why not put these efforts into arranging musical concerts? Why not make efforts to promote local talent, let the world know we are an Art loving nation that knows how to enjoy?
Pakistan is an entertainment-deprived country since the grave terrorism wave stricken the country so bad. We Pakistanis find our entertainment, collectively if I may say, in a cricket match that too just started happening in the country.
Our neighbouring country India is organising international concerts for Giant bands like ColdPlay and here we are reluctant to arrange a musical evening in an open air theatre just because.
It is Govt’s responsibility to provide a goo venue with fool proof security to the musicians, bands and to the music lovers.
For at the end of the day, nations are remembered through their Art and Culture in good books of History.