Safdar Tawakoli

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Country: Afghanistan

About Safdar Tawakoli
Safdar Tawakoli (born 1942) holds a unique place in the history of music of Afghanistan in general and Hazaragi music in particular. He is the iconic "dambura player" of his generation, and is known for his unique style of regional traditional music. Safdar has not only been popular among listeners in his own generation but has also inspired the younger generation, who are more than interested in learning his instrument and memorising his lyrics.Early life Safdar Tawakoli was born in 1942 in the Yakawlang district of Bamiyan to a family of moderate means. His interest in music was nurtured during his youth, but he had to overcome the conservative tradition and religious restrictions of his local culture. Despite these, he pursued his field of interest and became a devoted artist. He always admired and in some cases envied the popularity of national singers. He mastered the "dambura", a regional long necked stringed instrument popular among the Hazaras of central Afghanistan. Career In pursuit of a career in music he left Bamiyan to run a music store in Kabul that sold cassettes. It was his hard work and talent that led him to the studios of Radio Kabul and Afghanistan's National Television, where he did countless number of shows and sung hundreds of songs. Safdar Tawakuli became a household name in regions and the number of his listeners increased. He became an iconic singer and was awarded with several awards and honorary medals. He represented Afghan Music in several countries of which Mongolia, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Pakistan and Iran are some. He headed the Musical group of the Ministry of Cultural Affairs of Afghanistan from 1986 to 1995 for eleven consecutive years. Like everything else Safdar Tawakoli's artistry fell victim to the civil war during which he lost his career, his home, his beloved son but he never lost his fame. He stayed in Afghanistan in extreme conditions, even during the time of the Taliban when his life was in grieve danger. After the fall of Taliban, his musical number, "Agar az Bamiyan o Qandahari - Hamay mo Pag biraari"; became a symbol of national unity and pride for Afghanistan when it was re-sung by the prominent Afghan Singer Farhad Darya. He was one of first singers to sing on Afghanistan's National Radio immediately after the fall of the Taliban.

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Afghanistan Musicians Ranking

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Rank Name Total
1. Rajab Haideri 847508
2. Sardar Ali Takar 17516
3. Hamid Sakhizada 12310
4. Dawood Sarkhosh 12298
5. Safdar Tawakoli 11542
6. Shekib Hamdard 6984
7. Naghma 6493
8. Khyal Muhammad 3209
9. Ahmad Zahir 2764
10. Elaha Sorur 1476

Musicians Ranking

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Rank Name Total
105. Dawood Sarkhosh 12298
106. Luiz Gonzaga 12128
107. Gal Costa 11814
108. Gokhan Tepe 11654
109. Safdar Tawakoli 11542
110. Lidush Habib 11423
111. Mukesh 11389
112. A. Abdulrahman 10783
113. Badriya Essayed 10590

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