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Abida Parveen - The Queen Of Sufi Music

Abida Parveen - The Queen Of Sufi Music

Growing Up As Abida

Abida was born in Mohalla Ali Goharabad in Larkana, Sindh, Pakistan. She received training in music from her father, whom she credits for her success in the field of music. In an interview given to The Guardian, she states: "I was very attached to my father. Classical Sufi music, for him, came from the soul – I was pulled in by it. We spent hours at the dargahs [Sufi shrines, often built over the graves of saints], singing and reciting at festivals. It was normal in the culture I grew up in."

Later on, she began her training under Ustad Salamat Ali Khan of the Sham Chorasia Gharana, who nurtured her skills. Praveen recalls singing her complete kalam, when she was as old as three years old.

Musical Journey

Abida began her musical journey by performing in Dargahs & Urs. She went on to acquire a professional career in Radio Pakistan, Hyderabad, in 1973. It was in Radio Pakistan where Abida rose to prominence as a vocalist. From then on, there was no looking back for the immensely talented Abida.

Her first international tour was in the year 1993 where she traveled across the US to perform at sold-out venues. Abida Parveen made a mark for herself as an international artist and helped Sufi music get an international recognition.  She is one of the few female artists to sing Qawaalis. Her famous Qawwali compositions include Dama Dam Mast Qalander, Hum Toh Hai Pardes.

In her musical career, she has rendered famous kalams, ghazals and even verses of saint Kabir. Young minds can discover a treasure house of musical talent in Abida Parveen. She is an important artist to listen to and learn from, in the realm of Sufi music.

Her Critics 

Parveen could sing a shopping list and have an audience weeping. – BBC Journalist

Pakistan’s ‘female Nusrat.– The Nepali Times

Queen of Sufi Music – Music Critics

If you are interested to discover the genre of Sufi Music, listening to Abida Parveen will help you understand the style, the spiritual aspect of this pious form of music. For, if you listen to the maestros, only then can you get to the depth of experiencing the best of a particular musical genre.