Saleem Javed

Name Saleem Javed
Nationality Pakistani
Date of Birth 25 December
Place of Birth Hyderabad, Sindh, Pakistan
Famous For Singing

Saleem Javed, Singers is famous for Singing, Pakistani celebrity. Born on 25 December

Saleem Javed (real name Mohammad Saleem, ' Javed is a nick name ' ) is something of a national treasure. He has been an active performer for over two decades and unlike the popsters of today, who often take shortcuts to fame, he’s cut his teeth performing night after night live on stage. Coming from a humble background, Saleem Javed, ran away from his hometown of Hyderabad to seek fame and fortune in Karachi, repeating the ritual any number of starry-eyed young men do, chasing elusive desires. But fate had something else in store for him, other than shattered dreams. Seemingly out of nothing, Saleem Javed carved a career based on a relentless work ethic and a single goal: giving it his all on stage and behind the microphone.

His transformations throughout his career have been almost Bowie-esque. From his disco king image in the eighties to his various avatars in the nineties (pop malang during the JUGNI era; desi gangsta image artist on the Piya Gee album) to his modern, carefully sculpted likeness as an ageing metrosexual,

Saleem Javed concentrates on his getup as much as he does on his music. And speaking of his music, it has seen quite a few transmutations itself. He performed the incredibly cheesy, yet addictive ode to Javed Miandad in ’86 when the latter smashed his legendary six in Sharjah (Cricket ki dunya mein sab say aagay hai woh kaun?). He has covered ageless artistes such as Ahmad Rushdie and Mehdi Hasan (Dil Ko Jalana , Tum Mere Ho, Ek Bar, Dil-e-Veeran) and his newest hit re-mixes (Mere Harian from last album Kabhi Koi Aye Ga and Koi Kar kay Bahana from new album DOSTI) tributing Mala this time, are all over-crossing the charts. Though his originality and the end results of his experiments may be debatable, no one can doubt his perseverance and the fact that whether you think his music is good, bad or ugly, the guy tries hard, and has been doing so for 20-plus years. And he also happens to be in sur, on stage and in studio aswell.

Saleem Javed practically started the trend of Re-Mixing old songs with new instrumentation and improvisation 23 years ago. He did the first ever re-mix in Pakistan in his first album Listen to My Voice launched in 1985 and the song was " Janam Aii Janam by Legendary Madom Noor Jehan "

“My first album, Listen to my Voice, was released on March 7, 1985. I used to perform on stage and had been doing so since my school days, but I didn’t start seriously performing on stage till 1983. My stage experience helped me immensely. You have to perform in front of a crowd that doesn’t know anything about you, while the compere has just praised you to high heaven. And then you have to deliver. Luckily for me, Allah has been incredibly gracious and people appreciated my performance. As for singing live, that was the only way to do it back then. The concept of lip-synching was almost non-existent. The whole idea of miming to a CD was introduced by people who didn’t know how to sing,” said Saleem Javed.

After the release of his debut record, Saleem Javed gained prominence through his version of Faiz Mohammad Baloch’s Laila o Laila, and according to the singer, this

was something of a novelty as previously, pop artistes had nearly always chosen to reinterpret Punjabi folk tunes. Hence he took a risk by reinterpreting a Balochi folk song and the risk paid off. But far from basking in past glory, the singer has a gripe with some of his pop peers as according to him, certain individuals fail to give credit where it is due.

“I don’t want to name any names but some singers don’t want to give anyone any credit. The world over artistes are respected for their contributions. For instance I was the first singer to introduce the wireless microphone in Pakistan. I added a lot of things to my live act, such as wandering out into the crowd, singing with headmics, adding a dhol player to my pop music to create a first ever Bhangra-PoP Fusion in Pakistan in mid 80s. These things were unheard of in the pop scene at the time. Today you see every pop band perform with a dholak player or a tabla player. But nobody wants to give credit for these achievements. Who was doing these things 22 years ago?” SaleemJaved.

Singing, though, wasn’t Saleem’s first calling as in his early days he wanted to be an actor.

“I tried out a couple of roles during my school days and came to the realization that I’m a horrible actor. ‘Wait,’ I said to myself. ‘U-turn.’ That’s when I thought about becoming a musician. I asked a gentleman, the late Siddique Mukesh, to teach me to play the keyboard. He initially shooed me away but I was persistent and pleaded with him to give me a lesson or two every week. He relented and one day while I was practising, he asked me why I didn’t sing. I told him that I was a horrible singer but he insisted and

urged me to sing for him. I gave in and by the time I was finished, he surmised that I had a slight problem with sur, but that I was in taal (rhythm). As is the maxim for musicians:

‘Be sura chal jaata hai, be taala naheeh chalta (an out-of-tune singer can survive, but not an out-of-rhythm one).”

From thereon began Saleem Javed’s journey towards the pop limelight. He was urged by his teacher to practise with one of the local bands, but they insisted that the young buck pay a fee if he wanted to polish his voice. On top of that, the singer faced stiff opposition from home as his parents didn’t want him to turn into a Singer or join Showbiz.

“Firstly, I didn’t really come from a very financially strong family, and when they cut off my pocket money, I was in a real fix. I couldn’t afford to pay the fees required for training and practice and asked them to let me join assuring that I’d pay them the following month. Luckily they agreed.”

A couple of days after taking up his apprenticeship with the band, the members asked Saleem to sing. One of the band’s friends was in attendance and as he was organizing a function at his place, he joined in the chorus urging Saleem to sing. Sing he did, jumping up and down like a monkey (in his own words), delivering his rendition of "Alamgir’s Dekha Na Tha" the first every song he performed publicily. By the time he was finished, he thought he would be booted from the joint. Instead, everyone present burst out into applause as Saleem got his first professional booking. The rest is pop history.

As Saleem gained prominence and started getting more bookings, the green-eyed monster of envy soon reared its head as the other band members began to feel insecure about Saleem’s growing star profile.

“It got to the point that nobody was willing to play with me anymore. Promoters refused to pay me my dues. I was literally in tears. I had had enough and that’s when I decided to pack up and leave for Karachi. I was going to do music and I was going to show each and every one of them what I was capable of. I asked a friend of mine to lend me the bus fare, said goodbye to my family and left for Karachi,” .

The artiste had arrived. Once in the port city, he began making more contacts and since his slight fame preceded him, started getting shows. He started working on his album and his album was revolutionary in terms that first time ever in Pakistan 24 track recording system was brought in, and its an achievement for Saleem Javed too that he was lucky enough to record the first ever album on that system. His first record hits the market in 1985, Smash Hit Nationwide, and his popularity was no longer in the borders of Pakistan and he had his first ever international Concert in Dubai. And the STAR keeps on traveling to the world representing Pakistan and its culture through his music. So far Internationally Saleem Javed has performed numerous times in

So there you have it. At an age when most Pakistani males are battling mid-life crises, Saleem Javed seems to be having a ball of a time. The secret to his longevity is just as elusive as it ever was. But something tells us that come hell or high water, the man will not stop recording, singing and performing anytime soon and that his position as the uncrowned king of uncool cool will not be challenged by any wily pretenders for the foreseeable future. Long live the king.

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