ISLAMABAD-Legendary Shahenshah-e-Qawwali, Sufi and music legend, Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, popularly known as “Shahenshah-e-Qawwali”, meaning “The King of Kings of Qawwali” was remembered on his 71st birth anniversary on Sunday (October 13).

The legendary Qawwal, born in Faisalabad on October 13, 1948 to a classical family of singers, embarked on singing career with Qawwali followed by an ever-increasing line of music including sufi, and hymns. With his stunning voice, Khan’s first public performance was as the leader of a Qawwali party, at a studio recording broadcast as part of an annual music festival organized by Radio Pakistan, known as Jashn-e-Baharan.

His first major hit was the song Haq Ali Ali while he also did joint ventures with well-known international singers. Khan reached out to western audiences through his work with peter Gabriel on the soundtrack to the last temptation of Christ in 1985.

His songs are still alive among his fans and also youngsters, and have defined the art-form of Qawwali for the generations to come. Some of his most famous songs included ‘Kinna Sohan Tainu’, ‘Piya Re Piya Re’, ‘Gham Hai Ya Khushi’, ‘Mera Piya Ghar Aaya’, ‘Dum Mast Kalandar’, ‘Afreen Afreen’ and many others.

The Pakistani government had awarded him with pride of performance for his splendid work in the field of music.

The legend Qawwal died of a cardiac arrest at the age of 49 on 16 August, 1997, at the peak of his career.