Karachi: We’re still in the first half of the year (2022) but it looks as if some artists will continue their reign well into the end of the year. Among such names is the queen of our hearts, Hadiqa Kiani. As part of Spotify’s Equal Pakistan initiative, Hadiqa Kiani has been chosen as the third ambassador. Part of it includes a swanky billboard in the heart of New York City’s bustling Times Square. Spotify’s Equal Pakistan initiative is focused on female musicians from the country with previous ambassadors being Mehak Ali and Grammy-Award winning Arooj Aftab as the first.
To put some momentum behind the initiative, Hadiqa Kiani song, ‘Yaad’ from Vasl is featured on Spotify’s Equal Global Playlist.
“Hadiqa Kiani’s versatility knows no bounds. Being a trendsetter for Pakistani women over the past two and a half decades, she has conquered all, shattering every glass ceiling along the way. Hadiqa remains an icon and an inspiration that artists, especially Pakistani women look up to,” highlighted Rutaba Yaqub, Spotify’s Music Manager for Bangladesh, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
“We are elated to have her as the [EQUAL Pakistan Ambassador] for the month (May) where she will act as the torch bearer, leading the way for not just female artists but the community in general to pursue their dreams.”
The Equal Pakistan program includes playlists strictly featuring female musicians from the country including artists like Zeb Bangash, RFB, Natasha Noorani and Sameen Qasim. The initiative also includes Equal Destination that features a number of female artists from the country on playlists such as Top Local Female Artists in Pakistan 2021, Women of Coke Studio, This is Abida Parveen, and This is Noor Jehan. Another significant one is the Equal Global Playlist, a culmination of music by Equal Pakistan ambassadors along with female artists from all around the world.
Hadiqa Kiani has already blown skeptics out of the water with her performances in Raqeeb Se (2021) followed by Dobara (2021).
However, Hadiqa Kiani has her eye on the prize, for instance her own music. Since separating from brother Irfan Kiani with whom she collaborated for a long time, Hadiqa went on to drop her new album, Vasl in 2022 through which she is exploring and playing with a level of organic tones as well as experimentation. Hadiqa is playing the role of music producer in a bid to inform the next generation what her music is about. This includes recreating some of her older hits as part and parcel of Vasl, which comes after the terrific Wajd – Volume 1.
From Vasl, the singer, composer, songwriter and producer has dropped at least three music videos, each telling a narrative of her own, with the last release being ‘Woh Kon Hay’.
She is also not amused that one of her most prominent songs, ‘Boohey Barian’ from her album, Roshni, has been released by Saregama Music as ‘Buhe Bariyan’ by Kanika Kapoor. Hadiqa sees the record label as the culprit since they never bought the rights, offered royalties and basically took an iconic song for free without so much as a word with the original singer-songwriter Hadiqa Kiani, who has in turn vowed to take action.
As for the swanky billboard in New York City’s Times Square, Hadiqa Kiani deserves it for making good music over the years and her longevity as an artist.