Ustad Ghulam Ali (born 5 December 1940) is a Pakistani ghazal singer of the Patiala gharana . He is not to be confused with the Indian singer Bade Ghulam Ali Khan (of whom he was a disciple) or Chhote Ghulam Ali, who is another Pakistani singer in the Qual Bachon Gharana.
Ghulam Ali is considered as one of the best ghazal singers of his era. His style and variations in singing Ghazals has been noted as unique, as he blended Hindustani classical music with ghazals, unlike any other Ghazal singer. Highly popular in Pakistan, India, Nepal, Bangladesh, as well as amongst South Asian diaspora in the USA, the UK and the Middle Eastern Countries. Many of his hit ghazals have been used in Bollywood movies. His famous ghazals are Chupke Chupke Raat Din, Kal Chaudhvin Ki Raat Thi, Hungama Hai Kyon Barpa, Kiya Hai Pyar Jisé, May Nazar Sé Pee Rahahoon, Mastana Peeyé, Yé dil yé pagal dil, Apni Dhoon Mein, His recent album "Hasratein" was nominated in the Best Ghazal Album category at Gima 2014.
Early life and background:
Ali was born in the village of Kalekay in the Tehsil Pasrur Sialkot District of Punjab, in 1940 in British India now Pakistan. He belongs to a musical family, his father was a vocalist and a sarangi player who initiated Ghulam Ali to music from his childhood.
Ali's father named him after Bade Ghulam Ali. At age 15, he became a student of Bade Ghulam Ali Khan, a master of the Patiala Gharana of Hindustani music. Due to the busy schedule of Bade Ghulam Ali, he was trained mainly by Bade Ghulam Ali Khan's three brothers, Barqat Ali Khan, Mubarak Ali Khan, and Amanat Ali Khan, in Lahore.
All these distinguished classical musicians taught him the finer nuances of classical music. His solid foundation of classical music included studying Thumri and learning to sing raga.
His name 'Ghulam' was given by his father, a great fan of Bade Ghulam Ali Khansaab. He used to live in Lahore. He had always been listening to Khansaab since childhood.
Ghulam Ali encountered Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khansaab, an unparalled legend of classical music for the first time when he was in early teens. When Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khansaab had come to Kabul, Ghulam Ali's father requested the Ustad to take his son as a disciple. But the maestro insisted that since he was hardly in town, regular training wouldn't be possible. But after repeated requests from Ghulam Ali's father, Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khansaab asked the young Ghulam Ali to sing something. It wasn't easy to sing before him. He mustered the courage to sing the Thumri "Saiyyan Bolo Tanik Mose Rahiyo Na Jaye..". After he finished, Ustad hugged him and made him his disciple.
Ghulam Ali started singing for Radio Lahore in 1960. Along with singing ghazals, Ghulam Ali composes music for his bhajan. His compositions are raga-based and sometimes include a scientific mixture of ragas. He is known for blending gharana-gaayaki into ghazal and this gives his singing the capability to touch hearts. He beautifully sings Punjabi songs too. Most of his Punjabi songs have been extremely popular. Though from Pakistan, Ghulam Ali remains as popular in India as in Pakistan.
He entered Hindi cinema with a Hindi film song Chupke Chupke Raat Din in B. R. Chopra's film, Nikaah (1982). Other popular ghazals include Hungama Hai Kyon Barpa and Awaargi. He always selected the ghazals of famous poets. One of his ghazal 'Hum ko kis ke gham ne mara' written by Masroor Anwar was a top hit.
On being questioned about Pakistani pop groups, Ghulam Ali replied, "Frankly, I am really bewildered at their style of singing. How can you sing a song by running and jumping around the stage? The stage is meant for performing not for acrobatics."
Ali has also sung some beautiful Nepali ghazals like Kina kina timro tasveer, Gajalu tee thula thula aankha, Lolaaeka tee thula and Ke chha ra diun in Nepali language with Narayan Gopal, a well known Nepali singer, and composer Deepak Jangam.Those songs were written by King Mahendra of Nepal These songs were compiled in an album entitled Narayan Gopal, Ghulam Ali Ra Ma, and are popular among Nepali music lovers to this day.
One of his memorable concerts was at the Taj Mahal. On being questioned about the future of ghazal singers, he said he enjoyed popular ghazal singer Adithya Srinivasan's ghazals who performed the opening act at his concert in 2012 at Bangalore. Recently, in February 2013, the maestro became the first person to receive the Bade ghulam ali khan award. Commenting on this, he said," I am indebted to the indian government for giving me this award. For me, it is the greatest award I have received because it is named after my guru."
Ae husn-ae lala faam,
Apne Dhun Mai Reheta Hun Mai Bhi Tere Jaisa Hun,
Apni Tasveer Ko Aankhon Se,
Arz-e-gham say bhi faida tou nahain (Poet: Raees Warsi),
Shaki Sharab La,
Baharon ko Chaman,
Barsan Lagi Sawan Bundiya Raja,
Chamakte Chand Ko Tuta Hua Tara Bana Dala,
Chhup Chhupa Ke Piyo,
Chupke Chupke Raat Din (Poet: Hasrat Mohani),
Dil Buk Buk Ahro,
Dil Jala Ke Mera Muskuraate Hain Woh,
Dil dhadakne ka sabab ( Poet: Nasir Kazmi ),
Dil Mein Ek Leher Si Uthi Hai Abhi (Poet: Nasir Kazmi),
Fasle Aise Bhi Honge,
Gajalu Ti Thula Thula Aankha" (Poet: Mahendra of Nepal),
Hadaff-e-Gham na kiya sing-e-mallamat nay mujhay (Poet: Raees Warsi),
Hum Tere Shahar Mein Aaye Hain,
Hum To Kitno Ko Mehzabeen Kehte Hain,
Humko Kiske Gham Ne Mara' ( Poet: Masroor Anwar ),
Hungama Hai Kyon Barpa (Akbar Allahabadi),
Itni muddat baad mile ho,
Jin ke honton pe hansi,
Kabhi neki mein mujhe,
Kachhi Deewar Hoon Thokar Na Lagana,
Kaisi Chali Hai Abke Hawa,
Kal Chaudhvin Ki Raat Thi (Ebne Insha),
Kal Raat Bazm mein jo mila,
Kehte Hai Mujhse Ishq Ka Afsana Chahiye (Qamar Jalalabadi),
Khuli Jo Aankh,
Khushboo Gunche Talash Karti Hain,
Khushboo Jaise Log Mile,
Ki Pucchde Ho Haal,
Kina Kina Timro Tasveer,
Kiya Hai Pyaar Jise,
koi humnafas nahi hai,
Main Nazar Se Pee Raha Hoon,
c (Poet: Qamar Jalalvi),
Mehfil Mein Baar Baar (Agha Bismil),
Mera Kya Tha Tere Hisaab Mein,
Mere shoq da nai aitbar tenu,
Ni Chambe Diye Bandh,
Patta Patta Boota Boota (Poet: Meer Taqi Meer),
Paara Paara Huan Pairaahan-e-jaan (Poet: Syed Razid-e-Ramzi),
Rabba Mere Haal Da,
Roya Karenge Aap Bhi,
Tak Patri Waaleya Lekh Mere,
Tumhare Khat Mein Naya Ik Salaam,
Woh Kabhi Mil Jayen To,
Woh Jo Hum Mein Tum Mein Qarar Tha (Poet; Momin Khan Momin),
Yeh Batein Jhooti Batein Hain,
Yeh Dil Yeh Pagal Dil (Poet: Mohsin Naqvi),
Zakhm-e-Tanhai Mein Khusboo-e-Heena Kiski ThiDeat 15 November 2006 in pakistaan
Text from this biography licensed under creative commons license