Mohammed Rafi, one of the immortal playback legends of the Indian Music history came back to life? recently at the London Coliseum, when singer Sonu Nigam, representing India’s premiere Record label Saregama India Limited joined hands on stage with the orchestral excellence of CBSO (City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra) to pay tribute to the ever green singer! What followed was an outstanding and timeless concert, the Sonu Nigam Concert An evening in London Rafi Resurrected.
The concert is Sonu Nigam’s tribute to the legendary singer. It is said that Sonu who started his singing career with Rafi songs (he is also considered to come closest to the singing style of the legendary singer) has always said that though he never got to meet Rafisaab, his music and life has influenced him profoundly. Said Sonu; “My album Rafi Resurrected, which has been released in Europe and shortly to be released in India, will be my tribute to this wonderful, ever smiling, versatile, humble, spiritual and simple hearted guru. All that I have learnt and executed since then? has come a full circle with Rafi Resurrected”.
Nigam, who is regarded as heir to Rafi’s singing style (he first performed a Rafi song on stage, with his father at the age of three!), opens the concert with a silent tribute to the master. While Nigam was applauded for his performance, the response that he got for the songs demonstrated Rafisaab’s popularity even today. Slightly bemused but unmistakably excited to be fronting a 75 piece orchestra, Sonu waved fondly to his fans between verses and songs.
Speaking on his favorite rendition, the singer said, “Kya hua tera vaada? is my first song I sang professionally at the age of 3, thus it is closest to my heart. But “Tum jo mil gaye ho? is my all time favorite song, my pick of the lot. It’s also due to the orchestral grandeur of the music director, the late Madan Mohan.”
The highlights of the concert include the magical Dil Ke Jharoke Mein? from the film Bramachari and the sublime duet Mujhe Teri Mohabbat Ka Sahara? one of the several numbers on which Nigam was joined by singer Gunjan. The grand climax was the resounding song An Evening in Paris? changed to An Evening in London? to aptly honor the occasion.