Qawwali is a type of singing particular to the Sufis of Pakistan and North of India. Its origin can be traced in Arabic samac and Hindu classical music. The Sufis are Muslim mystics who use music as a means to reach an ecstatic union with God. It is sung in Persian, Arabic, or Urdu and its topics are always about mystical love. Originally, qawwali singing was accompanied by handclapping. Later on, it came to be accompanied by drums such as the dholak and the tabla, as well as the sarangi. Later, the harmonium joined the ensemble. The music is sung by one or two soloists, accompanied by a choir, and improvisation plays an important part. Jafar Husayn Khan was born in the province of Uttar Pradesh, near Delhi. He comes from a musical family, having studied Hindu music first, and is one of the great masters of North Indian qawwali singing.
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AllMusic Review by Bruno Deschênes