If music is a mountain range, its Mt Everest is Abida Parveen. A summit of Sufi music, which no soul can surmount.
The Queen not only drowns herself in the music she sings, but she sweeps along her listeners too, in the tides of the overpowering words that flow out her throat. After the plunge, to rise up to the surface banal isn’t easy.
She is mesmerising, she is addicting, she is tranquillising.
A true flag bearer of Ganga Jamuni Tehzeeb, she immortalizes the words of Bulleh Shah, Kabir and Amir Khusrau with just the same devotion.
Beyond music, pearls of abundant wisdom she spilled, in this interview (which was taken before she enthralled the Delhi audience by the performance on March 5, 2012) reflected nothing but her rock solid conviction on which her life and music stand – of peace and love. Though thoroughly therapeutic, her words shook me.
In an interview esewhere she said: “In Sufism there are no barriers, mine or yours, old and new. It belongs to all and connects hearts and souls. It’s power unites the singer and listener in a divine communion with the creator.”
From its very inception till this year’s Jahan e Khusrau Festival, she has been present in each of the ten held so far. “The festival is unique because it has no nationality or religion and is sacred to all of us.”
Overwhelmed, and still shaken by the genuine grief that Ali Zafar expressed over the hatred sweeping across the globe, but more so in our subcontinent, I could not hold back my own tears listening to her firm belief that there are indeed “no internal barriers”.
The interview itself is a journey to the sublime, I would wish to take again and again. Hence, I have captured it in my blog, to preserve it as a shrine to which I shall keep returning to, in times of deep internal turmoil.
In these times of despair when we keep embracing hopelessness off and on, she lives with her heart, mind and soul steadfast on every word and verse of truth and love she sings.
Kudos to Barkha Dutt for immortalising these priceless pearls of wisdom.
(Click to the number below for the must watch interview)