Alamgir Khan 22, Nabha (Patiala), Singer
Singer who grabbed his ‘mauka’
Alamgir Khan has sung 20 Bollywood hits in two years but his claim to fame was the “Mauka Mauka” cricket World Cup jingle. At present, he is in Mumbai, working with music directors Himesh Reshammiya and AR Rahman on film songs. Because of his name, he is often mistaken for being a Pakistani Sufi singer; but his music flows from the Patiala Gharana. At 14, he started classical singing training under the guidance of his father (Ustad Murli Khan), grandfather (Ustad Idu Sharif Khan), and great grandfather (Ustad Karamdeen Khan), all known singers. For someone who got his first break in Salman Khan-starrer ‘Bodyguard’, surprisingly it wasn’t the love of India’s favourite game that made him take up the ‘Mauka’ project. The fact is he has never been a cricket buff.
What did it take to be an achiever?
I am here because of my classical music and Sufi singing talent. Due to my solid grounding in music, I was selected to sing for Bollywood movies such as ‘Bodyguard’ (‘Desi beat’), ‘Khiladi 786’ (‘Title song’), ‘Shaadi Ke Side Effects (‘Tauba main vyah karke pachhtaya’) and ‘Welcome 2 Karachi’ (‘Mera yaar fantastic’); and because of that I have survived in tinsel town for two years.
Who is your inspiration, and why?
I belong to a family of Sufi singers who taught and inspired me with their talent. My grandfather, Ustad Idu Sharif Khan, promoted Sufi singing to save the traditional culture of Punjab. His recent hit is ‘Das kitey gaya ve tera pyaar dholla’, sung in Punjabi Sufi style.
What’s your next goal?
I look forward to the releasing of the film song I am working on with Himesh Reshammiya. Besides, I have nearly 30 Bollywood assignments with music directors, including Pritam Chakraborty, ShankarEhsaan-Loy and AR Rahman. I am also going to release my first Punjabi song, ‘Saadi pagg nu slama hundia, te tere suit nu salut vajde’, directed by Davvy Singh, in Punjab this month.
Why is it the best time to be young in India?
The social media and internet along with society are supportive for budding singers. Today, one can launch a career simply by posting recordings on Facebook, YouTube or WhatsApp, and get noticed. People support and respect talent.
How can the youth be a change-maker?
The youth can become a change-maker only if they know their potential. Rather than swooning over lewd rap songs and aping singers blindly, the youth should understand and respect their own culture first. Punjab has a rich singing tradition and the youth should use their talent to promote it worldwide.