The Evergreen Milli Naghmay!

Monday, August 14, 2017 Heba Moeen 0 Comments

Picture Credits: Obaid Chawla (I REALLY like this picture!)
So here I am, humming the evergreen milli naghmay (national songs) in my horrendous voice, amidst the Dolby Surround Cough System (yes, my religiously regular cough is back, apparently the flu and cough virus is in the air ... reminds of yet another song: 'Love is in the air!'). 

I remember the time when we used to gather for the August 14 function at school with a patriotic feel as if ready to conquer the world with our free souls. And who doesn't like the lovely and catchy milli naghmay aired till the decade of the 80's or those composed and sung up till the early 90's? Well, because after that no musician in my opinion has been able to create worthwhile national songs. No composition or poetic justice has been done to the term 'milli naghma' itself. Gone are the days of sagacious composers like Sohail Rana and poets like Jameeluddin Aali or Masroor Anwar whose team work used to produce national songs that are still top of the list. Perhaps the dedication towards patriotism was valued over mere commercialism. 

These days, I'm loving the recent rendition titled, 'Tribute to Pakistan from Christian Singers'! Where on Earth have they got such brilliant vocal cords from?! Without a doubt they belong to a Church choir. This could also be a new chapter after the Benjamin Sisters with singers such as these and others like the Viccaji Sisters and Alycia Dias. This particular national song rendition seems to be sung by nightingales and I've been playing it on repeat:

These are some of my all time favourite milli naghmay:

Hum laaey haen toofan sey kashti nikal key:
This is said to be Pakistan's first ever national song that was sung by Saleem Raza in 1956.

Sohni Dharti, Allah Rakhay!:
Poet: Masroor Anwar
Composer: Sohail Rana
Singer: Shahnaz Begum 
Year: 1965

Coke Studio had made a lovely remake two years back for their eighth season.

Jeevay Pakistan:
Poet: Jameeluddin Aali
Composer: Sohail Rana
Singer: Shahnaz Begum 
Year: 1972

Yeh watan tumhara hai:
Poet: Kaleem Usmani
Singer: Mehdi Hasan 
Year: 1962

Ay watan pak watan:
Singer: Ustad Amanat Ali Khan 
Poet: Karam Haidery
Year: 1965

Chand meri zameen phool maira watan:
Singer: Ustad Amanat Ali Khan
Poet: Saqi Javed
Year: 1970

Roshan o rakshan:
Composer: Sohail Rana
Singer: Habib Wali Mohammad and various other singers  
Producer: Mohsin Ali 

Watan ki mitti gawah rehna:
Poetess: Sheba Akhtar
Composer: Can't seem to find the name of the composer but I think it was Arshad Mehmood. Please correct me if I am wrong.
Singer: Nayyara Noor
Year: 1981

I simply adore this lady for her voice and simplicity! I wish to see her in Coke Studio some day, creating magic through her voice ... 

Zameen ki gowd:

Poet: Asad Muhammad
Composer: Sohail Rana
Singer: Muhammad Ifrahim
Year: 1980

Hum Mustafavi haen:

Poet: Jameeluddin Aali
Composer: Sohail Rana
Singer: Mehdi Zahoor and various other singers
Year: 1954

Khayal Rakhna:
Poet: Tahir Parwaz
Composer:Nisar Bazmi
Singer: Alamgir & the Benjamin Sisters
Year: 1982

And tell you what ... when I played this song, my parrot, Coco loved it so much that she started dancing which I documented in this video. I know the quality of the video is poor but I couldn't immediately work on the lighting part, she's very moody and could have decided to take a break.

Hum zinda qoum haen:
Composer:Nisar Bazmi
Singers: Tehseen Javed, Amjad Hussain, Fatima Jaffery, and the Benjamin Sisters
Year: 1982

Millat ka pasbaan:
Composer:Nisar Bazmi
Poet: Mian Bashir Ahmed (1945) as per
Singer: Masood Rana

Tera Pakistan hai yeh mera Pakistan hai:
Poet: Bashir Farooq
Composer: Sohail Rana
Singer: Amjad Hussain

Mein bhi Pakistan hoon, too bhi Pakistan hai!:
Poet: Jameeluddin Aali
Composer: Sohail Rana
Singer: Muhammad Ali Sheikhi

Deen Zameen Samandar Darya Sehra Kohistan:
Poet: Jameeluddin Aali
Composer: Khalid Asghar
Singer: Iqbal Qasim and Mona Mukhtar

Ay Rah-e-Haq kay Shaheedoun:
Poet: Mushir Kazmi
Composer: Mian Shehryar
Singer: Naseem Begum

Gathering the names of composers and poets for some songs has been very difficult because of very limited or insufficient information. It seems that the 80's was abuzz with a lot of national songs being composed after which the trend of quality music concerning national songs started declining. You may correct any information that you feel could be incorrect and I'll be grateful for that.

With the advent of social media, we have been able to keep track of our treasures. Likewise, such platforms have also made promotional campaigns and direct marketing easier. For instance, I've got the same promotional message from a pizza outlet at least thrice which seems quite tempting despite 'thrice' being somewhat invasive.

Our service industry seems to be gaining momentum as consumers have started following the ZMOT pattern with growing e-commerce, although there seems to be a long way to go. for instance, is celebrating independence through it's Azadi Sale and is offering a 14% discount so if you plan to opt for domestic travel, this maybe a good chance to save money. 

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