New music label brings India and Pakistan closer

Tarish Music blends sounds from across the subcontinental border

Two men playing a piano outdoors

Tarish Music is an independent music record label launched this year to bring together Indian and Pakistani musicians, despite tension between their neighbouring countries.

The purpose of Tarish is to share soulful music and “something people can relate to”, producers say.

“The plan is to release 12 songs a year with six singers from India and six from Pakistan,” says co-label owner and producer Omer Ahmad, who started the label with his Indian partner Tarun Chaudhary.

The label's first release featured emerging artists Arham Khattak and Saad Sultan. The label plans to release a song every month.

Rafta Rafta, by Atif Aslam, is the label’s second release. It became an instant hit and gathered a million views on the first day.

The single was also trending on Twitter and YouTube in India and Pakistan, and was released with a music video shot in Northern Pakistan's picturesque Skardu, a city in Gilgit-Baltistan.

Starring one of the leading Pakistani actresses, Sajal Aly, the music video received an overwhelming response from fans and critics in Pakistan.

The lyrics were written by Indian Punjabi singer and songwriter Raj Ranjodh and Pakistani director Hassam Baloch.

The catchy chorus is reminiscent of Aslam’s earlier mega-hit ballads, with a seasoning of flutes and compelling, exciting and invigorating tempos.

The song has so far crossed the 2.4 million views mark on YouTube and is trending at No 3 on the website.

“It’s always an incredible experience working with an artist like Atif Aslam, who is loved beyond borders and is able to bring people together through music,” Mr Ahmad said.

“He was involved throughout and helped to execute the project flawlessly”.

Updated: July 26th 2021, 1:01 AM