Boiler Room broadcasted its first-ever event from Pakistan on June 20, 2022. The event was held at District 19, a former ice factory in Karachi that has been transformed into a multipurpose space for artists and creators. With this event, Boiler room celebrated the country’s growing dance music scene as well as its rich history of traditional music and live performances.
Nabihah Iqbal, a UK-based artist and presenter of Pakistani descent, and musician and anthropologist Daniyal Ahmed welcomed viewers to the first-ever boiler room staged in Karachi, Pakistan.
On the bill was Ustad Noor Baksh, a Balochi Benju (Banjo) player, supported by two musicians who entertained the live audience and viewers with traditional tunes and melodies from the province of Balochistan in Pakistan. The tambura (long-neck lute) and a sitar were among the other instruments on stage.
This was followed up by a performance by Jaubi – an instrumental group from Lahore, Pakistan. The band’s music is based on North Indian classical music, modal jazz, and hip-hop. Traditional instruments utilized during their performance were a tabla, sarangi (short neck string instrument), and a Bansuri (long neck flute). Each performer also took the time to talk about their musical career.
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Singer-songwriter and vocalist Natasha Norani performed a set that included tracks from her upcoming album ‘Ronaq.’ Post her set, she also narrated her work as an ethnomusicologist, studying and tracking the history and heritage of music in Pakistan. Speaking of the event, she shared via Instagram, “So grateful to be a part of this milestone moment for our industry and what a pleasure to be able to do it alongside my friends.”
Natasha Ejaz, a singer and songwriter, closed out the instrumental and live set with a solo performance. Her thirty-minute set concluded with an introduction to her solo career, her hardships of getting a band together for practice sessions, overcoming her shyness, and her experiences with the music scene in Pakistan.
DJ Osama ‘Ozzie’ Khan, DJ Malik – one of the country’s youngest music producers, DJ Lyla, DJ pair Kukido and TMPST, and veteran techno DJ Talha Asim Wynne, better known as Tollcrane, kicked off the night with a run of back-to-back electronic, techno, and DNB music performances.
Commenting via Instagram, DJ Ozzie expressed, “This one is for all the believers. 🌹 Historic moment for the PK underground scene. I’m beyond grateful & honored to be a part of this. This thing alone gives us so much hope & pushes us forward, it keeps us going.”
Boiler Room Pakistan was supported and executed by Dialled In, Karachi Community Radio, Cape Monze Records, and Chalo, with funding from the British Council Arts. At the time of writing, each segment of this event on Boiler Room’s Youtube channel has over four thousand views and counting.
Watch the entire session on Boiler Room TV HERE