His Voice, Pure Magic

jagjit_2580330fOn a lonely night, switch on your music system and play the song Woh kagaz ki kashti…. You would be transported to another world. Such is the magic of Jagjit Singh’s voice.

That song, written by Sudarshan Faakir, is about one wanting to live one’s childhood all over again (Take back my wealth, my fame and my youth even, but give me back the rains of my childhood and that paper-boat). No other singer could have brought out the poignancy of the song the way Jagjit – whose fourth death anniversary was on Saturday – could.

“Our sweetest songs are those that tell of saddest thought,” poet P.B. Shelley had rightly observed. And when it comes to expressing sad thoughts through sweet songs, Jagjit was in a league of his own.

Just rewind to his songs like Tum itna jo muskura… (You are smiling so much, there should be some sorrow that you want to hide), Pyaar mujhse… (What will you get by loving me? You will be destroyed by the storm that my life now is), Tere khusboo mein basa khat… (How can I burn the letter that is soaked in your fragrance, immersed in love and written by your hand?) and Jhuki jhuki si nazar… (In your eyes that are downcast, is there restlessness?). The longing, the pain of separation, unrequited love, admiration…ghazal is about all these. And Jagjit expressed all that and more in a voice that would captivate the listener in no time. Little wonder, he became arguably the most popular gazhal singer of all time.

“He was the one who turned ghazal into a popular form of music from an elitist one,” says playback singer Chitra Iyer. “I remember listening to Jagjit’s ghazals in Delhi as a little girl and falling in love with his voice. No singer could match Jagjit’s voice.”

Jitesh Sundaram, a Thalassery-born ghazal singer, nods in agreement. “Often, his voice was enough to take a song to another level, but he always chose the right lyrics to ensure that his ghazals were enjoyed by everyone,” he says. “He was also a talented composer and mentor of singers like Talat Aziz.”

Jagjit Singh, whose fourth death anniversary was on Saturday, continues to charm music lovers

By. P.K Ajith Kumar

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