Abdullah Siddiqui drops new single ft. Maanu; a global Coke Studio format for lockdown times and Ali Zafar releases song with Nirmal Roy

July 5, 2020

Abdullah Siddiqui is, at present, one of the hottest emerging names in music

Abdullah Siddiqui releases ‘Come Thru’ (feat. Maanu)

Abdullah Siddiqui is not called a prodigy for the sake of it. His appearance on a prolific production like Nescafe Basement and collaboration with Fawad Khan on the single, ‘Uth Jaag’ was certainly earned.

Having dropped his debut solo album, the LP Metannoya, where he is the singer-songwriter and music producer, Abdullah Siddiqui is, at present, one of the hottest emerging names in music. It is no surprise that he is also working on a single with Meesha Shafi. Whether the single lands on Heterotopia is also a mystery at this point.

What we do know is that Abdullah Siddiqui has been making music at an astonishing pace. As he confirmed to Instep just last week that his upcoming record Heterotopia is not an EP but a full-length LP containing 14 songs in total.

As Abdullah explained, he will be releasing four singles, one per week before dropping the full-length album. Having released ‘Kids’ featuring the super popular Shamoon Ismail, Abdullah is dropping ‘Come Thru’ featuring another emerging and talented artist known as Maanu, this week.

Abdullah plans to drop two more songs before dropping the complete album with 10 new songs and 4 released singles, each one of the four marking a collaborative effort. “After this (‘Come Thru’) there will be two more singles before the whole album is released.”

If an LP is in the works, why release some singles and not others as has been a trend for some time. When asked, Abdullah told Instep his release-philosophy.

Noted Abdullah, “So, the main product is the album, and it’s meant to be heard in a particular order. The point of the singles is to create buzz, so that people hear the whole album all at once when it’s out.”

Ali Zafar backs Nirmal Roy’s newest song, ‘Dil Chala

Singer-songwriter, musician, film producer and movie star, Ali Zafar wears many hats in the field of entertainment. He last scored a huge hit in the song, ‘Mela Loot Liya’ and is dead set on producing new artists via giving them a platform through his own label, Lightangle Records.

Among artists Ali Zafar is behind includes Yashal Shahid whose track ‘Sajna’ amassed 4.6 million views. Before that, he recorded ‘Laila o Laila’ in the studio with the young Urooj Fatima that went onto become a massive hit, collecting 20 million hits on YouTube in just 8 months.

The latest artist to be launched by Lightangle Records is Nirmal Roy with a song called ‘Dil Chala’ accompanied by a music video that was shot before the outbreak of coronavirus.

A press statement from Lightangle Records noted that while it has become next to impossible to record, the show must go on. “So here we are, kicking off with “Nirmal Roy” singing about her zeal for freedom and emancipation in her single ‘Dil Chala’. The video was shot before the pandemic and reminds us of the little things in life and nature we take for granted. Support her. Like it. Bump it. Share it.”

The song, performed and composed by Nirmal Roy, also has music industry experts involved in the making and completion of the song including lyricist Shakeel Sohail – who penned the words - and Shiraz Uppal – who mixed and mastered the song. Ali Zafar mentored Nirmal Roy through the process of recording in Lightangle Studio. The result is a fresh-sounding Nirmal Roy who catches you by surprise with her vocals. The video tells her story just as she is waking up. Her dreams and hopes and her narrative begins from there. We learn early on her that she yearns to travel. The song is sweet, young and hopeful; it is both modern and mainstream enough to capture attention without sounding excessively polished.

Coke Studio global taps into Pakistan version with lockdown sessions ft. international artists

Coke Studio has had a global makeover. When you hit the Coke Studio YouTube page, it throws you because it doesn’t look like the regular Coke Studio sessions that originated in Pakistan.

After the last release by Atif Aslam, a rendition of ‘Asma-ul-Husna [The 99 Names]’, the recent releases from the platform features international artists like Katy Perry - among others. A total of 100 artists over 60 days will feature in this global version for which Coca Cola has partnered with #BeApp.

Coke Studio – the Pakistan format – has a subscribed audience of over 9 million people as it entered its 13th year in 2020. Several songs on the platform have touched anywhere between 10 million to 100 million views.

According to a reliable and anonymous source, as the original Coke Studio 13 packed up due to the pandemic, Cov-Sars-2 aka Covid-19 (coronavirus), these sessions are indicative of a global Coke Studio format made especially for the lockdown times. It will include more than 100 artists and 60 days of play.

But it doesn’t mean a mish-mash of Coke Studio 13 with homegrown artists collaborating with foreign ones, at least for now.

The lockdown sessions have tapped into the built-in audience of Coke Studio (Pakistan) to reach as many people as possible. As the source noted, it is a “proud moment for Pakistan that the format is being adopted globally.”

Since then, Coke Studio session ft. Katy Perry has also landed on her YouTube page. Coke Studio really is going global.

While the current performances from international artists in the global Coke Studio format seems the safest way to pull of the series, what it means for Pakistani artists in the long run will be determined by time.

Abdullah Siddiqui drops new single ft. Maanu; a global Coke Studio format for lockdown times and Ali Zafar releases song with Nirmal Roy