Ghazal maestro Talat Aziz says that the fact that his concerts across the country run to packed houses, proves the genre is still loved by many — old and young alike — and it’s a fallacy that the genre is dying.

The “Zindagi jab bhi teri bazm mein” and “Aaina mujhse meri” hitmaker says the ghazal genre has always been loved by music listeners.

Asked about the increasing popularity of other genres like hip-hop and EDM (electronic dance music) in India, Aziz told IANS in an interview: “The audience for ghazal is intact. It doesn’t matter if there are other genres. I still do shows. Thousands of people come and there are requests for ghazals too. If people will try to understand it and feel it, they will enjoy it.”

And there are many who are able to enjoy it, he believes.

“People have problems in getting tickets. Be it Hyderabad, Pathankot or Delhi, the shows are all sold out. I also do corporate shows. There are definitely listeners of this genre,” he said.

But isn’t the genre dying’

“That is a fallacy. Just because ghazals are not featured on mainstream media, it doesn’t mean ghazals are out,” said Aziz, who once hosted a radio show titled “Carvaan-e-Ghazal with Talat Aziz”.

Should there be more such shows promoting ghazals’

“A lot of people were disappointed when it got over. But that’s not my call (to get the show back). Bollywood has its own place. If a song has soul, it will definitely work. It won’t fade away. I still sing ‘Umrao Jaan’ (1981) songs. And some of them who requested for it, were not even born when the film released.

“The genre is even accepted by youngsters. You can’t see ghazal, you can only feel it,” he said.

And now, he is thrilled about “Majaz- Ae Gham-e-Dil Kya Karun” — his first film as a music director. Aziz has been in the industry for over three decades, but it’s just now that he has composed music for a film. What took him so long’

“No one had approached me earlier and I didn’t approach anyone, so I didn’t do it. Shakeel Akhtar (the film’s producer) and his partners came to see me for the film on Majaz. He (Majaz) was a great poet. They wanted me to score the music,” recalled Aziz.

He then finally gave his approval to compose music for the film, for which popular singers like Sonu Nigam and Alka Yagnik have also lent their voice.

Is he acting in the film as well’

“No, I don’t have any role in the film,” said the singer, who has acted in movies including Abhishek Kapoor’s romantic drama “Fitoor”.

What about reality shows’

“I did ‘Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa’ (celebrity dance-based reality show) as my friend – the head of the channel Colors – asked me to. I wouldn’t like to do a similar one… Judging is also a boring word. But yes, I would love to do talk shows. I can talk about music, time, science or philosophy,” said the musician, who is also working on a ghazal album.

 

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