Volume 2 Issue 42 | September 27 , 2008 |


  Celebrating Life

   Winning    Photographs

   The Music of   'Celebrating Life'


   Star Insight     Home


The Music of 'Celebrating Life'

Rafi Hossain

Syed Abdul Hadi
Subir Nandi

I am not sure how the winning lyricists are feeling, but if I was one of them, right now I would be staring at the stars wondering how my lyrics could have been made into such a beautiful song of professional quality. Ten professional music directors and twelve artistes of Bangladesh have joined their efforts in transforming the ten winning lyrics into actual songs. This is a tremendous achievement for the winners of the lyrics contest of Celebrating Life 2008, after all, how many budding or new lyricists ever has the opportunity to work with established artistes? For all of us, the music will be a surprise, bringing joy in all our lives. An audio CD is currently being planned featuring the winning songs. All the winners of the lyrics competition, music directors, artistes and involved personnel will be invited to the CD launch event. I would like to convey my heartfelt gratitude to the artistes and music directors and lyricists for such beautiful performances. It is hardly ever the case that all tracks in a CD are worth listening to, but this CD contains ten tracks, each of which are rare exceptions that we believe will strike a memorable chord in the hearts of listeners. Since different music directors have styled each track according to their own flavour, the CD offers a lot of variation. Veteran musicians and young artists have worked together in this project, thus offering an unique blend of tastes. There is no fixed genre, except that all the songs are patriotic. But these are not the traditional patriotic tracks, they cover various musical themes and have been created to satisfy music lovers of all ages.

Shakila Zafar

To start with, I would like to thank Shimul Yusuf, who directed an amazing 12 minute fusion track, called “The Celebration of Nature.” This track was used as the soundtrack for the six seasons dance at the Celebrating Life Award Ceremony 2008 choreographed by Minu Haque, Munmun Ahmed, Kabirul Islam Ratan and Dipa Khandakar. This musical fusion brought together 36 instruments, starting from Jajhor and Tobla to Flute and Sitar, alongside the usual traditional and contemporary instruments. We are planning to feature this musical fusion as a bonus track on the Celebrating Life 2008 Audio CD.

The veterans… Syed Abdul Hadi and Subir Nandi
Syed Abdul Hadi's tremendous voice seems only to get better with age. Even at this age, the capacity of his vocals are mind boggling. He brings with him a loved traditional theme, which can be felt every second of the track. And the track he has sung for Celebrating Life is no different. The music of his song has been directed by Selim Ashraf.

Subir Nandi, whose voice Bangladeshis have been listening to for years, is a very supportive artist. He is very easy to work with. His track, a duet with Mosiur Rahman Rinku, has been an instant hit with anyone and everyone who has heard it till now. Veteran musician Naquib Khan has directed the music for Subir Nandi's song, and he made sure that his tune becomes simply unforgettable. This unique track offers a beautiful combination of veteran musician's Subir Nandi's style and folk singer Rinku.

Shakila Zafor and Bappa Mazumder has teamed up to create a very sweet track, titled “Kothay tomar bari, griho je kothay?”. We hope our listeners will come to love it as much as we have.

The musical trio: Samina Fahmida Pancham
In the musical arena of Bangladesh, the Nabi family holds a bright position. The three children of Mahmudun Nabi: Samina Chowdhury, Fahmida Nabi and Pancham have all worked with Celebrating Life. Samina has sung three songs, one of them is a chorus with Fahmida Nabi, Syed Hasan Tipu and Shafin Ahmed and the other two are duets. The music of the chorus has been directed by Syed Hasan Tipu. Foad Nasser Babu has directed the music for Samina's duet with Fahmida.

Fahmida has sung four songs: one of them is the aforementioned chorus, two are duets and the last one is a solo performance. The music of the solo performance, titled “Shobdo” has been directed by Taposh. This project also marks Fahmida's debut performance as music director, in a song

Photo by Rafiqul Islam / Xposure, Costume: Chondons
Samina Chowdhury and Fahmida Nabi


titled “Cry” which she has sung with Laila Plamandon. Everyone loved the brilliance of the music; both in terms of the music itself and the direction, and the song came out to be quite haunting. Fahmida deserves a very special thanks, not only for her performances, but also for her help in making the overall project successful. She has been a great enthusiast. She is not only a good human being, but also a passionate supporter of good projects.

I was not quite informed about Pancham's skill as a musician, and I was a bit skeptical about his involvement, but finally when I heard the music in the track, I found it to be wonderful. I am sure his track (duet with Samina) will be a great hit. This is also the first time that Samina and Pancham have sung together, and they have both sung tremendously well.

Laila Plamondon

The Winning English Lyrics of Celebrating Life
Other than the chorus performance, Fahmida & Laila's “Cry” and the duet of Samina & Fahmida, the music of the other two winning English songs have been directed by Tomal and Sajib. They have been sung by Mizan and Nasim Ali Khan. Usually, patriotic songs are not in English. Even though the English patriotic songs were ambitious attempts, they ended being quite good. Even though they have been sung in English, they could still carry the weight of love for the motherland and present it in a touchy way. We hope that the new generation, who are more proficient in English, will grow an interest in writing patriotic songs about Bangladesh more often. It should be mentioned here, the winner of the English Lyrics Contest of Celebrating Life 2008 is actually a student of Class VIII of Dhanmondi Boys' High School. This should serve as a great example as to the fact that art and creativity knows no age and is not bound or surpassed by age. Anyone can create something beautiful. We hope that students of both Bengali and English medium schools will come forward in writing along sides the professional lyricists.

Ashfaque Ahmed

T-Shirt Ashfaque Ahmed
Under a silent hood, Ashfaque Ahmed has been supporting Celebrating Life. Although a businessman by profession, he is an aficionado of art and culture. Immensely sporty and positive, he is an artist at heart. He himself is a participant of Celebrating Life in both Lyrics and Photography Categories, and even though his entries were not selected by the judges, he did not lose heart. Instead, he came forward to support the programme wholeheartedly and sponsored to create t shirts of various designs to promote Celebrating Life further. The designs and t-shirts have gained massive popularity. Once the news of the t-shirts spread, all my colleagues started to attack me to get a piece of the action. Almost all of them are gone! And this made me feel what a great joy it is to give, not even a small percentage of that delight can be felt in receiving. Everyone has already started talking about my big heart; little do they know that it was actually due to Ashfaque Ahmed's sponsorship that I was able to distribute the t-shirts. I would like to thank him again for his generous support. Whenever I tell people that I should not be credited for the t-shirts, they ask, “Then who should be credited?” In reply, I say “Ashfaque Ahmed.” And just like this, through word of mouth, he has become known as “T-shirt Ashfaque Ahmed.”

At the end of the day, I am overwhelmed at the positive energy around me, igniting my spirits. All the participants, musicians, artists, judges, media partners, colleagues and other stakeholders have provided such support that there was no chance for the project not to be successful. I pray that we carry this optimism with us wherever we go, so that positivism radiates outwards from within us making every endeavour fruitful. I wish everyone Eid Mubarak.

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