Ahmad Zahir was a prominent Afghan singer in the 1940s and 1950s. Ahmad Zahir is known as “the most popular singer in the history of Afghanistan.” He released more than thirty albums in his short life and died on the 33rd birthday in a “suspicious” car crash in the Salang Valley. The cause of his death has not yet been determined.
Ahmad Zahir was born on the 14 June 1946 in Kabul. Ahmad Zahir started singing from school and his first song with this poem was “Zia Qarizadeh, a nightingale who was angry with you”. After showing his talent in music, he performed on Radio Afghanistan.
After completing his studies at the Teachers’ College, Ahmad Zahir traveled to India to pursue a master’s degree in education. He was perhaps the first to adapt Western instruments to Eastern music and to bring accordion, organ, trumpet, etc. to Afghan music. His reputation rose through music to surpass that of his father, then Prime Minister of Afghanistan.
His fame was and is so widespread that the people of Afghanistan still think he has been the best singer in Afghanistan to date. He was named the best singer of Afghanistan.
In popular culture
Ahmad Zahir is considered to be the representative of Afghan classical music who offered meaningful and lively songs to the listeners. Ahmad Zahir tried his best to use the best, most beautiful and most prestigious poems in his songs and therefore, his interest in Maulana Jalaluddin Balkhi, Hafez, Saadi, Bidel, Simin Behbahani, Rahi Moayeri, Khalilullah Khalili, Abolghasem Lahouti, Forough Farrokhzad and others were rude poets in the Persian language. Ahmad Zahir has sung in Persian, Pashto, Hindi and English.
Ahmad Zahir was a contemporary of Googoosh in Iran, and some considered the both to be healthy rivals. Ahmad Zahir remembers many songs that have been compiled in 33 official albums and have been released on the market in audio form. Only two video songs of Ahmad Zahir have been recorded and his other video songs are adapted from these two songs or his photos.
Ahmad Zahir has countless fans not only in Afghanistan, but also in the three countries of Tajikistan, Iran and Pakistan. This interest is very high in Tajikistan and his songs are still considered the best.