Coke Studio: My TOP 5 songs!

Music is binding. It binds you. Takes you to another level. Of late, I got introduced to the Coke Studio series by Atul Shrivastava (a batchmate at IIM L, a wonderful guitarist and one of the finest guys I’ve met!) – Thanks Bro –  For introducing me to a world of music that takes good music from the subcontinent to the world!
Coke studio is Pakistani TV Series where talented Pakistani musicians come to jam with an in-house band. Sometimes they bring together musicians from diverse influences and pick -up a popular track from any one of them to give it a completely different feel.
What I really like about Coke Studio is that their passion for music SPILLS OUT in the way every minute detail is handled. Whether it is the detailing in the camera work in the way the video is shot, in the sounds, in the effort that is going in behind EACH and EVERY Track, or in the sheer talent of the musicians who are making some absolutely amazing music!
Musically, Coke Studio is easily one of the best things that have happened to me! I am picking up 5 of my favourite songs from COke Studio – with a few lines about each of them and links to the official videos. Just to get the “feel” right, I am writing about each of the songs while listening to the respective songs and adding the respective Youtube videos so you can watch the songs while reading what I have to say! 🙂
So here goes – my TOP 5 songs from COke Studio, Season 2 – in no particular order.
1. Chup!
This is the first Coke Studio song I heard and it has me addicted to both – Coke Studio and the song itself, every since. Chup is by a Pakistani Female Duo – Zeb & Haniya – immnsely talented both of them. WHile the original “Chup” song is nice too, this one has a very jazzy, waltzy feel to it. I especially like the way the dholak blends in with the earthy drum beats. A special word of mention for Louis Pinto – the in-house Coke Studio drummer. He is truly versatile and a pleasure to watch and listen to. Also, the guitar strumming is very 1960-ish if you know what I mean. Yet, it is timeless .. Chup!
2. Saari Raat
Well, athough I did not intend this to be chronological listing of WHEN i heard WHAT song in what order, this is pretty much turning out ot be like that. But I’m going to write whatever flows naturally – That is EXACTLY what music is all about – flowing it naturally. And one of the songs that truly “flows naturally” – is this one by Noorie, a Pakistani ROck Band, known for its raw energy. This song has some wonderful Sitar-and-Keyboard pieces. Not to mention the way the tempo fo the song picks up gradually. It moves from CLASSICAL – to SOFT ROCK – to LOVE BALLAD – to something slightly HEAVY – meandering along the way like a river in a farmland. Ali Noor’s fits the song like a glove. He is so “natural” in the video – Just look at him move! One song that I can listen to all night, really!
3. Bulleya
A slightly different song this. It is a version of a song done many times over by many artists (most of them Pakistani). The version that made this song famous in India was “Bulla ki Jaana” by Rabbi Shergil (A song that touched my heart pretty much as much as Coke Studio has, but I will write a seperate post about it some other time! 🙂 .. This version is done by Ustad Riaz Ali Khan. Basically the lyrics, liek I said, are based on a a poem written by the renowned Sufi Poet – Bulle Shah and has amazingly deep meaning. This song can heal your wonds, quite literally! Anyway, you need not be the ‘spiritual kinds’ to appreciate it. Enjoy! 🙂
4. Mavi Ve
Fusion music at its best! This by the Shafwat Amanat Ali (Former lead singer of the famed Pakistani FUsion ROck-band “FUZON”) & a band called Josh. JoSH is a Montreal-based Indian/Pakistani fusion band which draw fuses modern and traditional Bhangra beats. This, blended with some mind-blowqing vocals by SHafaqat Amanat Ali make this track a winner. Again, the dholak piece in the middle is what steals the show and how the song comes back to the tempo after the middle “dholak” lull. The lull before the storm. That’s a much-used line, but when it fitsd perfectly, it fits perfectly. A very contemporary sounding track – in total contrast to Bulleya – that is the beauty of Coke Studio!
5. Rona Chor Dia
Javed Bashir is a Pakistani Qawwali singer. One who can inspire, make and break by his sheer talent. Shireesh (one of my closest friends & an aspiring playback singer – more on him later), said he should give up singing after listening to this track! He was awed – just like most others (including me) that I have introduced this track to! This is another amazing song form the Zeb-Haniya duo (yes, the “chup” duo). However, it is Javed Bashir who adds a completely new dimension to this song. Javed can sing at ANY PACE, ANY SCALE. To me, this song conveys one thing – IMPOSSIBLE IS NOTHING! (Sorry, Adidas!) 🙂
Like Coke Studio?  .. Let me know what you think! .. Let’s talk! 🙂

26 thoughts on “Coke Studio: My TOP 5 songs!

  1. @ Abhijit – Thanks! … Glad you liked ’em!

    @ Saeka – Titliyan Rocks! .. I heard it “properly” for the first time after you dropped the link… and s is REALLY nice! 🙂

  2. very nice to see coke studio gaining popularity in india…i wish dey had aired it hre as well..i just wish ‘aaj latha naeeon’by javed bashir and ‘aik alif’ wud have also been in the list

  3. Although music of subcontinent is very strong,traditional and very much modern in transition with time, Coke Studio is one of the best things happened in music in Pakistan when it was quiet and very dull to some extent. It was like ripples in calm water and brought life and interest in music lovers of different levels.
    Well done Coke Studio and the whole team, Rohail Hayyat and others who contributed.
    Thank you for compiling these songs and writing beautiful comments!!!!

  4. there have been many really good songs since the season 2. one song which should really make your list is this one. and you would not expect her to sing like this.

    ‘Chori Chori’ by Meesha Shafi.

  5. I jst recently stumbled across dis song.. n believe me frm last nyt I’m damn addicted to dis..ryt nw also listening to it.. amazing twist n lift of music, whirling with energetic beats…(sry… dnt knw anythng abt music or beats) ..but loved to listen to d power of optimism..
    Here is d link.

  6. Hi Just saw this list. “Saari Raat” is my personal favourite but i also love “Kuch Ajab Khel” by Shafqat Amanat Ali ji. Its beautiful.

  7. Yea..m completely mesmerized by the music they create. My top 5 completely different. Söngs like ‘madari’ , ‘banjara’ and ‘nirmohiya’ are gold collection for me!

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