Arooj Aftab Gets the Title Of Being the First Pakistani Musician To Win A Grammy

Arooj Aftab, a Brooklyn based Pakistani vocalist, won a Grammy for Best Global Performance making her the first-ever Pakistani to win Grammy on Sunday.

The 37-year-old Brooklyn based singer, Arooj Aftab, won the Best Global Performance title for her song ‘Mohabbat’.

Arooj won this award on Sunday making her the first Pakistani to win a Grammy award. She was also nominated for the Best New Artist category which was won by the hit Driver License singer, Olivia Rodrigo.

At the pre-gala ceremony backstage, where most of the award winners are announced, Arooj Aftab told the reporters that she is excited about the awards and that she feels great. She added “I’ve been very nervous all day. And we’re off to a good start.”

Arooj has quite a different music genre that combines old Sufi traditions with folk, jazz, and minimalist intonations. For her unique music style specifically, the Pakistani vocalist has been gaining a lot of attention globally.

Mohabbat singer was born in Saudi Arabia to Pakistani parents and spent her adolescent years in Lahore before moving to Boston to pursue music production and engineering at the famed Berklee School of Music. Arooj has been a resident of New York for the past 15 years.

When talking to AFP a few days before the Grammy Award ceremony she commented “We’re all so cool — the group itself is kind of like a win,” when asked about how she feels about being nominated in the category of Best New Artist. In the interview, Arooj added that Olivia Rodrigo, Saweetie and The Kid Laroi all are her favourites who were also nominated in the category with her.

Arooj has played at some major venues Lincoln Center and the Museum of Modern Art in New York, as well as in 2018 she performed for Mitski at The Brooklyn Steel.
She received critical praise for her 3rd studio album Vulture Prince, which drew even more notice after ex-president Barack Obama selected the single ‘Mohabbat’ on his summer favourites list for 2021.

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