Salt Arts presents Hamza Akram Qawaal and Brothers to Karachi

Nearly every week brings with it live music performances that merit not just our endorsement but also some discussion. In this age of urban radicalization, barbaric attitudes and despair-inducing reality that is slowly but surely corroding our insides, both the importance of music and its transformative cannot be overstated.

Our story begins with Hamza Akram Qawaal & Brothers who took the stage in Karachi last week as part of a show put together by Salt Arts. The performance was part of the Southasia concert series and was the seventh production under this banner. 

Akram, who is nominated in the Best Emerging Talent category in the music section of the upcoming Lux Style Awards and is a disciple of Ustaad Naseeruddin Saami and Farid Ayaz, was joined by his ensemble as he played poignant, transcendent versions of ‘Man Kunto Maula’ and ‘Tajdar-e-Haram’ among others.

The qawwali group can trace its lineage to Sufi mystic Amir Khusrau while Hamza, who is leader of the troupe, is also producing the music of upcoming film, Rangreza.

Salt Arts co-founders Raania A. K. Durrani and Junaid Iqbal and Design lead, Hasan Waliany reflecting on South Asia series postscript told Instep: “The South Asia Series Concerts are aimed at establishing a space for Pakistani music in the South Asia. We believe that South + Asia should be one word, hence the hashtag #Southasia. Hamza Akram Qawaal and Brothers are the latest addition to our portfolio of this series. Some of the other showcases include Sanwal by Ali Hamza, Southasia Ensemble co-curated by Salt Arts and Ahsan Bari Music.”

–Maheen Sabeeh