It was rather a unique presentation of the songs of yesteryears that prominent and promising singers -- Rumana Islam, Tanveer Alam Shawjeeb, Anupoma Mukti, Prithwi Raj and Ritu Raj -- performed in an unplugged soiree held at AS Mahmud Hall of The Daily Star Centre on January 28.
The Daily Star's regular monthly arrangement “Star Melodies” hosted the special musical evening of popular Bangla songs of golden era.
Mahfuz Anam, Editor and Publisher of The Daily Star, delivered the welcome address at the programme. Eminent Nazrul exponent and Star Arts & Entertainment Editor Sadya Afreen Mallick, who compèred the programme, enriched the audience elaborating the era of Gramophone Records and its relevant significance and scientific inventions around the world.
Shawjeeb on keys, Riyad on cajón (box percussion originated from Peru), Mithun on acoustic guitar and Faisal Ahmed on bass guitar embellished the musical evening. The arrangements of the songs found a new dimension with the rather unusual instrumental arrangement for these types of songs. Led by Shawjeeb, the musicians played with vivacity, and it lifted the singers' performances. Mithun's sweet fillers along with Riyad's energetic beats resonated with the audience.
Rumana Islam, daughter of legendary musician and filmmaker Khan Ataur Rahman, first took the stage and set off the soiree with “Akasher Oi Mitimiti Tarar Sathey”. She immersed in melody while rendering her the next song, composed by her father... “Tumi Cheyechhile Ogo Jante”. The singer also performed several other songs “Hridoy Amar Sundor Tobo”, “Tumi Ashbe Bole” and “Eki Sonar Aloy” (on request).
Brothers Prithwi Raj and Ritu Raj captivated music lovers with their performance, gripping the melody while performing “Amar E Duti Chokh” (originally recorded by Subir Nandi), “Aj Ei Brishtir Kanna Dekhe” (A Niaz Mohammad record), “Ami Je Jalsha Ghar-e” (Manna Dey/Sandhya Mukhopadhyay) and “Dol-e Dodul Dol-e Dulona” (originally recorded y Shyamal Mitra and Manabendra Mukhopadhyay). The artiste duo beautifully combined their classical training and aptitude in the songs, improvising taans and sargams. The singers later performed a Nazrul Sangeet “Porodeshi Megh” with pianist Tanveer Alam Shawjeeb on request.
Prior to their performance, Dada Tapan Kanti Baidya, renowned classical vocalist and father of Raj duo, spoke at the programme. He shared his memories of holding Sadarang Classical music festival from the mid -80s.
Anupama Mukti was next to take the stage. The elegant singer sang “Phuler Mala Poriye Dilam”, “Gaan Hoye Ele”, “Haat-er Kakon Phelechhi Khule”, “Ami Swapney Tomaye Dekhechhi” and some other songs on request. Mukti, a talented singer, held the attention of the audience as she did in previous programmes of Star Melodies.
Noted artiste Tanveer Alam Shawjeeb enthralled music enthusiasts, opening with a Sachin Dev Burman song , “Shono Go Dokhina Hawa”. The singer's presentation to the presentation “Ghum Ashey Na”, an Ajoy Chakrabarty record, was fantastic. He later performed “Boishakhi Megh-er Kachhe” and mesmerised the audience with a cover of the popular Abdul Jabbar record “Orey Neel Doria”. Shawjeeb later presented several songs on request. As he wrapped up the soiree with the score “Gangey Joar Elo Phirey”, the audience clamoured for more.
The event was organised with assistance from Eastern Bank Limited and Simantic Creative Concern.