The season of music is upon us! Yes, I am talking about the most awaited musical phenomenon of the year a.k.a Coke Studio. It has been a whole decade of some magical performances and surreal beats. The eleventh season has already had a banging opening, with numbers like Shikwa and Balkada generating buzz all over the internet. A good way to pass the time while you wait for the next episode is to revisit some classics that have been reinvented by Coke Studio over the span of the last decade.

Here are ten musical renditions by Coke Studio that are worth a spot in your playlist

1. Garaj Baras by Rahat Fateh and Ali Azmat

Garaj Baras was originally on Junoon’s album Deewar. The song itself was a head-banger with raw lyrics and smooth guitar rifts but Coke Studio made it iconic. Rahat Fateh Ali generating classical Raags with his powerful vocals beautifully complimented Ali Azmat’s hard rock style. This melodious fusion is a perfect opener for your Coke Studio ‘tribute’ playlist.

2. Aaj Latha Naeeo by Javed Bashir

This number by the talented Javed Bashir is an underrated gem. A worthy tribute to the great Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan’s timeless qawwali, ‘Aaj latha naeeo’ is a masterpiece. There were many amazing compositions from season 2, but ‘Aaj latha naeeo’ really shows why Coke Studio was let to make music for ten years. Your ears need this soothing harmony and it definitely belongs in your playlist.

3. Chori Chori by Meesha Shafi

Meesha Shafi joined Coke Studio in season 3 and was an instant hit because of her first song ‘Jugni’. Jugni was a great song, but the number that really marked her as the queen of vocal mastery was ‘Chori Chori’. A beautiful rendition of the hit song by the legendary Reshma, ‘Chori Chori’ is a must-have on your playlist

4. Lambi Judai by Komal Rizvi

Another rendition of one of Reshma’s timeless pieces, ‘Lambi judai’ by Komal Rizvi is a song that is underappreciated but is actually one of the best ones of Coke Studio. The composition for this one is kept simple and Komal’s beautiful vocals are the main driver of this blue but beautiful melody.

5. Charkha Nolakha by Atif Aslam and Qayyas

Who knew a falsetto could fit into a qawwali? Yes, these tricks are only up the sleeves of musical wizards like Rohail Hayat.  Charkha Nolakha was a tribute to Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and combined two vocalists with very different ranges. The combination worked so perfectly that it resulted in one of Coke Studio’s biggest hits. Charkha Nolakha is the number that your playlist needs, urgently!

6. Jogi by Fareeha Pervez and Muazzam Ali khan

Coke Studio is the only music platform that can take on difficult songs by legends and still manage to come up with something fresh. Jogi is one of the best examples of these renditions. Fariha Pervez’s sweet vocals backed by a large orchestra and Muazzam’s classical sound is a recipe of perfection and the ultimate result is indeed musilicious.

7. Kheeriyan de Naal by Niazi Brothers

A folk song with lyrics inspired from Waris Shah’s Sufi poem Heer, ‘Kheriyan de Naal’  is a lesser known song by Coke Studio. Its anonymity, however, is not in any sense reflective of the brilliance that this song entails. Niazi brothers’ smooth vocals with minimum instrumental sound make this song worth each byte of your playlist.

8. Tajdar-e-haram by Atif Aslam

Who would dare to play with an iconic qawwali like Taajdar-e-haram? Turns out Atif Aslam, the maestro himself could and it was definitely worth the risk. This powerful rendition is one of  Coke Studio’s fan favorites and for good reason indeed.

9. Paar Channa De by Noori and Shilpa Rao

Another folk song reinvented by the very talented duo ‘Noori’ and the Bollywood singer Shilpa Rao, ‘Paar Channa de’ is like a breath of fresh air amidst old familiar sounds. This song is a beautiful fusion of Pakistani traditional music and Soft rock and one of the most unique compositions of Coke studio by far.

10. Ranjish Hi Sahi by Ali Sethi

Season ten of Coke Studio was endorsed as the year of tributes. There were many numbers that honored big names in musical history but the one cover that captured the true essence of the original song was ‘Ranjish hi Sahi’ by Ali Sethi. Ali’s command over classical technicalities and his silky voice is definitely a nerve soother and a treat for the ears.

Which one of these old renditions is your favorite? Let us know in the comments, below!




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