It’s not the rarest thing for London, but it’s a treat all the same. A regular feature of the Barbican’s qawwali programming, Pakistani qawwals Faiz Ali Faiz and company are back in the UK but this time for a five city tour. The London performance will take place in Ilford, in aid of Muslim Charity, in particular their work on maternal and newborn health.
Faiz Ali Faiz is the seventh generation of qawwals, and was famously asked by the late Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan – whose qawwalis he often performs – to stand in for him when the Ustad fell ill. Although unrelated to the Ustad, his powerful vocals and expansive range are probably the closest to him, and he has often spoken about the how his music has inspired his own.
While he’s a proponent of traditional qawwali, particularly the Punjabi doaba style, he’s also – like the Ustad – engaged in various fusion projects, exploring the complementarities between qawwali and gospel, flamenco and gypsy music.
We first saw the Faiz Ali Faiz ensemble perform in 2013, in a reprise of a stupendous, and ground-breaking collaboration of qawwali and flamenco artists with guitarist Chicuelo, and vocalist Carmen Linares. We featured the sublime Dil Jis Se Zinda Hi in our 2013 playlist roundup of the best South Asian performances in London. The company were in London again last year, sharing a double bill with Sain Zahoor.
Although not from the Barbican concert, this clip of Allah Hu from the Chicuelo/ Faiz Ali Faiz repertoire is a lovely listen.
When: Saturday 9 December 2017, 7pm
Where: Redbridge Town Hall, 128-142 High Road, Ilford IG1 1DD
More info and to book: Muslim Charity – Faiz Ali Faiz
By Seema Khan.
Posted on 19 November 2017