The Golden Years Upward Spiral

Hadiqa was born in Rawalpindi as the youngest of 3 siblings, her older brother (Irfan) and sister ( Sasha). Her father died when she was 3 years old. Her mother Khawar was the Principle of a Government Girls School. Since childhood, Hadiqa and both her brother and sister had a knack for music, and as such her mother and school enlisted her in the Pakistan National Council Of The Arts. During her childhood days, she used to perform in front of crowd of thousands of people, at the Liaqat Memorial Hall Pindi in various children music festivals.Also music was taught as a subject in her school and she recieved early education in music from her music teacher Madam Nargis Naheed.

She went on to study at Viqar-un-Nisa Noon Girls High School Pindi. She represented Pakistan in International children festivals in Turkey, Jordan, Bulgaria, and Greece, winning various medals along the way. She also used to be on Sohail Rana’s children’s program “Rang Barangi Dunya”; a weekly musical on PTV.

As an eighth grader Hadiqa moved from birth place Rawalpindi to Lahore. She was then enrolled in Naya Aligar Public School Lahore. She then went on to Kinnaird and Govt. College, due to her excellent academic performance, and earned a masters in Psychology.

In Lahore she got classically trained by Ustad Faiz Ahmed Khan (Late) and was also groomed by Wajid Ali Nashad (Late).

In early 90s, Hadiqa came onto TV to host a children music program from PTV called Angan Angan Taray. In the three and a half year long run, she had sung over eight hundred songs for children and also hosted the same show along side renowned music Composer Amjad Bobby (Late) and later on with music composer Khalil Ahmed (late).She also appeared as a VJ for a music charts program called Video Junction on NTM.

Hadiqa sung songs as a playback singer for a musical movie called Sargam (featuring Zeba Bakhtiar) in 1994 (muscic of which was composed by Adnan Sami Khan). The same year, she received various awards for her playback singing.

She won “NTM Viewer’s choice award” for the best female Singer of Pakistan in 1995. In the same Award show, Late Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan was awarded as the best Male Singer of Pakistan.

Hadiqa released her debut album Raaz (Secret) in 1996. she composed and wrote the lyrics to her first single, “Jeevan” (Life). The album spawned a string of radio friendly tunes and generally had favorable reviews. One reason Hadiqa”s album did well was because it was not common for female singers (from non musical backgrounds) to release albums in Pakistan. Also, she was the first female singer to release a pop album after a former pop singer, Nazia Hassan, gave up her musical career in 1993. Hadiqa’s ability to sing in various dialects also helped the album gain momentum.

In 1996, Hadiqa’s debut had sold over 700,000 thousand copies, a very impressive figure for Pakistan. This milestone came when piracy in Pakistan hit an all time high. She kept on releasing singles from the album, all of which were received well. These included “Yaad”, “Tu Agar Mil Jaata”, “Jaan E Jan”, and “Manne Di Mauj”.

Her increasing popularity was further highlighted in January 1997 when Hadiqa became the first Asian singer ever to perform on the British National Lottery Live BBC1 (a program with an estimated viewership 16.6 million at that time). Afterwards she worked on two more shows with Bally Sagoo for BBC 2 and ITV before moving to perform in the U.S. Her U.S. tour covered 15 states and a show in Canada too. The same year Hadiqa performed on several other international events such as “Celebration Hong Kong 97” at Happy Valley Race Course, alongside other International singers like Lisa Stansfield, Wet Wet Wet, Michael Learns to Rock, All 4 One and The Brand New Heavies.

By the end of the year she became the first Asian female singer ever to be signed by Pepsi Cola International. She was the second female in the world to achieve this, with the first being Gloria Estefan.

In 1998 Hadiqa began working on her second music album, Roshni (Light). The album was dedicated to her nephew Sonu, the son of her older sister, The first single off the album, “Tu Nawa Tu Sada” was released before the album was released. Hadiqa then released a second single, “Inteha-e-Shauq”. The song became the official song for the Pakistani Cricket team for the Cricket World Cup that year. Both songs being patriotic gained favorable reviews, however “Inteha-e-Shauq” was a much better success for Hadiqa.

On November 1, 1998 Hadiqa released Roshni. Initial album sales were powered mostly by “Inteha-e-Shauq”, which made the final listing of the album along with “Tu Nawa Tu Sada”.

Hadiqa’s third single off the album, “Dupatta” was an instant success. “Dupatta” gained more popularity than any other single .The success of the song was attributed to its quasi-bhangra rhythm with fat, funky techno beats and wah wah guitars, and Hadiqa’s “dreamy-meets-husky- vocals”, which made the results “stunning.” In wake of Dupatta’s success, Hadiqa soon went on to be widely accepted as the country’s leading female vocalist.

Capitalizing on “Dupatta’s” success, Hadiqa went on to release two other moderate hits, “Roshni”, and “Woh Kaun Hai”. She then delivered once again by releasing a sixth single off the album, “Boohey Barian” which went on to become an even bigger hit for her than “Dupatta”. To date, “Boohey Barian” is widely accepted as Hadiqa’s best single ever. So much so that it was adapted in TWO Indian films as “Hum Tuharey Hein Sanam” and Dil Laga Liya”.

Hadiqa’s massive success in 1999 was highlighted when she won PTV World viewer’s choice award for the best female singer in 2000. She also released seventh single off the album, “Intezaar”.