Renowned Nazrul Sangeet artiste Salauddin Ahmed started his musical journey by learning classical music. His love for classical music developed further as he started exploring the vast variety of Nazrul Sangeet. Eventually he established himself as one of the popular Nazrul Sangeet artistes by nurturing and nourishing his skills. In conversation with The Daily Star, on the upcoming occasion of National Poet's death anniversary, the renowned singer talks about our National Poet fondly.
What makes Nazrul Sageet special?
Salahuddin: For a classical singer learning Nazrul Sangeet is a must, because it is the hub of every variety of classical songs. The emotion, lyrics and the essence; that Nazrul Sangeet delivers is spectacular. This is what makes it one of its kinds.
What is your view of the ongoing research on Nazrul's work?
Salahuddin: Nazrul is still to be discovered. The research is still going on and we have a long way to go. The poet composed many songs, of which around 3,100 have been discovered. Plus Nazrul Institute has preserved around 1,500 authentic songs and among them, we have sung 300. So, to accelerate the ongoing research a lot of contributors and enthusiasts are required.
What kind of idea would you like to add to the research methodology?
Salahuddin: We need more young artistes to join the research, but the negative point is- Nazrul Sangeet has always been promoted as a tough genre. Plus most of the singers often practise tough songs and this has created a lack of confidence among the young singers. So if we manage to promote both easy and tough songs along with its versatility, then we can definitely get more youngsters to join as researchers. In this case we need media, government and every cultural organisation to work as a team.
How can we inspire singers from other cities to practise Nazrul?
Salahuddin: Nazrul Institute sends trainers out of Dhaka to train singers. Even I have participated in it. However, it is not enough as it is hard to run training sessions by one institute. What we need is co-operation of organisations like Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy to organise proper training sessions time to time and also provide a platform to perform.
Do you have any suggestions for the newcomers?
Salahuddin: Practising classical music and being affiliated with Nazrul Institute can help a singer to develop as a Nazrul Sangeet artiste. There is also an assumption, that by learning classical music one can sing Nazrul Sangeet, which is not true. One should receive training from someone who can explain the depth of Poet's melodies to enable them to embrace the lyrical beauty and strength of Nazrul's songs.