'Mehdi Hassan was an institution'
Ghazal legend Mehdi Hassan passed away following a prolonged battle with ailments this morning in a Karachi hospital.
His death has left a void in the world of music that can never be filled, artistes said today as they mourned the maestro's demise.
"I remember him saying I can see 'sur'. We should celebrate him across India and Pakistan because he was an asset to both the countries. He was legendary. Such people come only once in a while," Pakistani Sufi singer Abida Parveen said.
Singer Talat Aziz, who trained under Hassan, said, "I feel a tremendous personal sense of loss. I was his 'shagird', I spent a lot of time with him. For me he was a star. I don't have words to describe his loss. He was a great asset to the world of Ghazal.
Although he was not singing for quite sometime, he will be missed. There will never be another Mehdi Hassan."
Image: Abida Parveen, Talat Aziz
'We have lost a legendary singer'
Another Pak singer, Adnan Sami said, "He has been an inspiration to everyone who has anything to do with music. He
created an institution called Mehdi Hassan... I am still absorbing the news. It's difficult to digest that he has passed away."
Indian singing doyen Lata Mangeshkar said, "A singer like him is born once in a millennium. It is my bad luck that I could not sing with him when he was healthy. With his demise the music fraternity has lost a great and legendary singer."
Image: Adnan Sami, Lata Mageshkar
'He was a great artiste, his music was supreme'
Indian sufi singer Zila Khan said, "I am as sad as I was when my father died. He was a great artiste. His music was supreme."
Singer Chitra Singh, Jagjit Singh's wife said, "It is a great loss. Everyone learnt from his music, technique and style of singing. I had the opportunity to meet him and he was always encouraging. He has been unwell since quite sometime."
Image: Zila Khan, Mehdi Hassan with Jagjit and Chitra Singh
'He was the uncrowned king of Ghazal'
"It is a very sad news. I am shocked that he is no more with us. He was not only a great singer but also a very good
human being. I remember in the '80s we did a concert at my place and it was a big hit. I was aware that he was unwell and
I had always hoped that I should never get the sad news.
"But now that has happened, he will always remain alive in our hearts," said veteran musician Pyarelal and one-half of famed composer duo Laxmikant-Pyarelal.
"It is a great loss. An era of Ghazal singing has come to an end. His Ghazals were not complicated and could be understood even by a layman. His singing was soulful and moving, his command over Urdu made his singing more endearing.
"He was the uncrowned king of Ghazal," Grammy winning musician Vishwa Mohan Bhatt said.
Image: Pyarelal, Vishwa Mohan Bhatt