Jeff Buckley’s rendition of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan’s famous ‘Yeh jo Halka Halka Suroor Hai’, live at Sine in 1993. Excerpts are taken from an interview conducted by Jeff with Nusrat in January 1996 as well as from a dedication written by Jeff on his hero in 1997.
The original Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan version, who died in 1997:
Also check out the 1996 soundtrack for the film ‘Dead Man Walking’, if new to Qawwali-esque fusion. Khan helped popularize Qawwali outside of South Asia to mainstream Western audiences in the 1990s.
Qawwali – SUFI DEVOTIONAL MUSIC; THE OPERA OF THE EAST
Qawwali (Nastaʿlīq: قوٌالی; Gurmukhī: ਕ਼ੱਵਾਲੀ; Devanāgarī: क़व्वाली; Bengali: কাওয়ালী) is a form of Sufi devotional music popular in South Asia, particularly in the Punjab and Sindh regions of Pakistan, Hyderabad, Delhi, and other parts of northern India. It is a musical tradition that stretches back more than 700 years.
Originally performed mainly at Sufi shrines or dargahs throughout South Asia, it has also gained mainstream popularity. Qawwali music received international exposure through the work of the late Pakistani singer Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, largely due to several releases on theReal World label, followed by live appearances at WOMAD festivals
The roots of Qawwali can be traced back to 8th century Persia (today’s Iran and Afghanistan). During the first major migration from Persia, in the 11th century, the musical tradition of Sema migrated to South Asia, Turkey and Uzbekistan. Amir Khusro Dehelvi of the Chisti orderof Sufis is credited with fusing the Persian and Indian musical traditions to create Qawwali as we know it today in the late 13th century inIndia. The word Sama is often still used in Central Asia and Turkey to refer to forms very similar to Qawwali, and in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, the formal name used for a session of Qawwali is Mehfil-e-Sama.
Qaul (Arabic: قَوْل) is an “utterance (of the prophet)”, Qawwāl is someone who often repeats (sings) a Qaul, Qawwāli is what a Qawwāl sings.