Music To Feed the Soul During Ramzan

If the holy month of Ramzan, which started last week, is a time to feed the soul rather than the stomach then this wonderful clip of a lost generation of Pakistani musicians more than hits the spot.

The Sachal Studios Orchestra is made up of retired musicians who were forced out of work under the dictatorship of General Zia.  One had been selling fruit and veg, another had become a chai walla.  Then London-based philanthropist Izzat Majeed offered to build a studio in Lahore and finance a jazz album.

The music, including covers of The Girl From Ipanema and Take Five,  has rightly gone viral;  the album is topping the western music charts and the orchestra is  being hailed as the new Buena Vista Club.  I do hope so.


There’s a full account of these wonderful musicians here by Declan Walsh in The Guardian


11 thoughts on “Music To Feed the Soul During Ramzan

  1. WONDERFUL. What do I have to do to be in this orchestra! (other than take up a string instrument, own a white kurta, change sex, race and add a few years)

  2. Vijay – I agree 10 times! I wept like a baby watching this, thinking about the combined years of not being able to make music

  3. Its good to see such skill, precision and commitment delivered in such a wonderfully visual way to lighted the hearts and ears of watchers around the world!

  4. How creative and appropriate to have this in your food column.
    You’ve reminded us that it is more than our stomachs that need
    to be fed.
    And whodda ever thunk such a group would be assembled and
    play that kind of tune!!
    Why if I was a big shot record producer I would tap my cigar on
    the ashtray and order my sniveling underlings to sign them up for
    a long term contract.

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