Ali Azmat (Urdu: علی عظمت) (born April 20, 1970)1 is a Pakistani singer-song writer, musician and actor. He is best known as the lead singer for the influential Sufi rock band Junoon.and for his subsequent solo career. In 2001, he become the first musician ever to perform at the United Nations General Assembly along with an Indian band choosing to sing his song "Dosti" (English: "Friendship"), an aptly chosen title to promote the UN's mission in bringing peace to the world. In 2003, Ali performed live at the Royal Albert Hall in London, United Kingdom.
Music career with junoon:
In January 1990, Ali moved from lahore to karachi, and soon thereafter he joined Salman Ahmad,Salman Albert and Brian o' connell to form the Sufi rock band Junoon. Junoon is Pakistan's most successful band; Q magazine regarded them as "One of the biggest bands in the world" and The New York Times called Junoon "the U2 of Pakistan".3 Since their inception, the group has released a collective total of nineteen albums: seven studio albums; one soundtrack; two live albums; four video albums; and five compilations. Pioneers of Sufi rock, with such an original sound they achieved success during the early 1990s. Its members were signed to major record label EMI Records and afterwards released their self-titled debut album Junoon in 1991. After two years, the band recorded their second album Talaash (1993) with their new bassist Brian O'Connell after Nusrat Hussain left the band. The release of their second album began to create a cult following for the band. In 1996, Junoon released their third album Inquilaab, and it was only then that Junoon developed a nationwide fan following, with blending rock guitars and bluesy vocals with eastern elements like the use of tablas, raga-inspired melodies, traditional Pakistani folk music, and Eastern inspired poetry.The following year, the band recorded the critically acclaimed Azadi (1997), being the band's first international record deal, and making it Junoon's debut album in India. The band went on to record and release Parvaaz in 1999. The band found renewed success and popularity starting with 2001's Andaz and through 2003's Dewaar and their supporting tours. After the release of their seventh studio album, vocalist Ali Azmat and lead guitarist Salman Ahmad went on to pursue solo careers.
Azmat was born in Abbottabad and grew up in Garhi Shahu, Lahore. He went to Sydney, Australia, for his higher studies, but soon returned to Pakistan before completing university. His first band 'Jupiters' was known for performing covers at small gigs in Lahore. While with them, Azmat wrote his legendary hit song Dosti. He later sang and recorded Dosti with Junoon, after which the song gained national fame.
Azmat released his first solo album, Social Circus, Social Circus, in March 2005 to critical acclaim. Social Circus was a massive departure from Junoon's style and won 23 awards in Pakistan, including Best Album and Best Producer. In India, Azmat was nominated for Best Soundtrack and Best Song at the Sahara Awards held in London, for his single "Garaj Baras" in the Pooja Bhatt film Paap. Azmat's second album, Klashinfolk, was released in August 2008 and recorded at Mekaal Hasan Studios in Lahore. Klashinfolk also received significant critical acclaim across Pakistan. Azmat made his Bollywood music debut with the song Garaj Baras that was chosen by Pooja Bhatt, a close friend of Azmat. The song was picturized on John Abraham. Azmat gave his song Naina and Teri Perchahian, from Klashinfolk and Social Circus respectively, to the film Tera Kya Hoga Johnny. In 2013, he sung 2 songs for Jism 2.
The original lineup of Ali Azmat's band for live performances and albums includes Omran "Momo" Shafique (of Mauj) on lead guitar, Kamran "Mannu" Zafar on bass guitar and Louis J. "Gumby" Pinto on drums.. However various other drummers such as Waqar and Fahad Khan perform with the Ali Azmat band occasionally.