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To Dar Chashme Man: Ahmad Fanous

This ghazal is sung by the famous Afghan ghazal singer Ahmad Fanous, accompanied by his son, pianist Elham Fanous and by Ravi Albright on tabla. Ahmad reimagines this ever so popular piece in Dari-Farsi. The father-son collaboration creates one of the most successful fusions of the traditional ghazal with Western classical harmonies. Their unique blend of Indian and Western melodic styles owes much to the fact that Elham grew up with his father’s music in his ears and also began his own study of Western classical music at an early age in middle school.

“To Dar Chashme Man” was beautifully composed by Rahim Jahane to bring out the melancholy of being in love. The original lyrics were written by Forough Farrokhzad (1934 – 1967), an Iranian woman poet, a pioneer in modern Farsi poetry. Written in Farsi, it is a love song, but can also be addressed to anyone who gives the singer hope or who means a lot to the singer.

Some lines:

You are like a wave in my eyes
Roaring and rebellious and impatient

Ghazals are a traditional genre of poems set to music. Though they originated in Arabic poetry, the popular versions of ghazals sung in South Asia today can be traced to the 13th century Delhi Sultanate (present day India) poet/musician Amir Khusrau.

The ghazal is fundamentally romantic, often including overtones of both love and the pain of separation from love. The lyrics may also have a hidden double meaning that suggests another story which must be kept hidden.