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Junaid Jamshed: larger than life (a tribute)

By Anis Shakur

Sunday - December 18, 2016

America kay na Japan kay, hum tau hain deewanay Multan kay.’

     ‘Life cannot deny itself to the person, who gives life his all,’ is a statement that rings too true to the music great, Junaid Jamshed.

     Junaid was born on September 3, 1964, in Pakistan and after completing his high school education he was fervently desirous to serve in the Pakistani air force.

     For some reason his dream could not materialise. Next, Junaid took admission in the engineering university in Lahore and received Bachelors of Sciences (BS) degree in mechanical engineering in 1990.

     While he was a student, he was accustomed participating in the stage shows and lends his superfluous singing voice to quite a few songs.

     Relatively speaking, we seldom meet someone so convincing who made such a huge difference in our lives. He continued to exert a peculiar fascination with songs like ‘Do pal ka,’ vital signs, 1986.

     Perhaps, Junaid’s sense of patriotism and loyalty is nowhere conspicuous as it is in the song, ‘Dil, dil, Pakistan, jan, jan Pakistan.’ (The debut super hit song of the debut album, vital signs 1, available to the public from August 14, 1987, onwards)

     All his songs hold interest to this day, thanks to his fiercely committed and convincing performance as a vocalist. The song ‘Tum mil gaye,’ sung to perfection, filled the lyrics with emotional power.

     Junaid, the charming and graceful singer, shaded pretty melodies with brighter lyrics of love and romance. In a way so subtle, so adorable, so loving, he sang ‘Saanwali, saloni see mehbuba.’

     The performance of charismatic Junaid was so dazzling that he brought glamour on and off the stage. Indeed, more than any other singer of his time, he listened to the heartbeat of his admirers and responded with ‘Goray rang ka zamana kabhi hoga na purana.’

     Presumably, it was the divine call for Junaid in 2004. Consequently, he said Adieu to music and dedicated his life to the cause of Islam. He preached and propagated religion in Pakistan and overseas as well. His immense contribution to various charitable organizations and hospitals will never be forgotten.

     Not only that, his thinking, wealth, energy, education, talents, dressing, conversation, knowledge, demeanour, philosophy of life, even his simple, sincere greetings were directed and belonged to the Muslim umma.

     Junaid recorded nasheeds both for the television and CD’s. Additionally, his enormous religious contribution like Jalwa-e-Janan, is worth mentioning.

     Most definitely, the six word sentence to summarise Junaid’s hard work for the sake of religion is, ‘he was burning the midnight oil,’ for the betterment of his fellow human beings.

     Obviously, Junaid was a versatile man. His praiseworthy accomplishments not only speak volumes, they would be an incessant source of inspiration for the posterity as well.

     Apparently, Junaid was a vocalist, lyricist, actor, musician, entrepreneur, philanthropist, engineer, fashion designer, preacher, and most importantly, a friend of friends.

     Junaid was awarded the coveted Tamgha-e-Imtiaz in 2007.

     As the saying goes, ‘death meets us everywhere, and enters in at many doors.’  On December 7, 2016, Junaid and one of his wives boarded Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flight 661 destined for Islamabad.

     But the plane crashed before it could reach its destination. All the forty-eight passengers lost their precious lives. May Allah (SWT) grant them paradise. Ameen!

     His two wives, three sons and a daughter survive Junaid.

     Junaid left us at 52 years of age. His was a short life, but a life well lived.

     Junaid is no longer with us. His memories are just like the cool breeze and the blowing wind, which will tug at our heartstrings to keep us awake for years to come.



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