Friends, well-wishers and peers of Shahnaz Rahmatullah have expressed deep shock at the death of the eminent singer, who passed away at around 11:30pm on Saturday.
The Ekushey Padak and National Film Award winning singer died of heart attack at her Baridhara residence. She was 67.
During her musical career, which spanned over 50 years, Shahnaz has recorded around 500 songs for TV, radio and films.
She won the hearts of music lovers for her timeless songs like Ek nodi rokto periye, Phuler kane bhromor eshey, Je chhilo drishtir shimanay, Shagorer shoikote, Ek tara tui desher kotha and others.
‘Shahnaz had no flop songs under her belt. All of them became huge hits and are still popular till date. Besides Bangla songs, she recorded songs in other languages too. Her demise is an irreparable loss to the country’s music scene,’ said lyricist Shahidullah Farazi.
‘With her death we have lost yet another star of our music industry. She was loved by music lovers not only in Bangladesh but also abroad. Her death has left a huge void,’ said renowned singer Syed Abdul Hadi.
‘She was an idol to us. I learnt singing practicing her songs. She was always there for me. I received a lot of love from her in my childhood days. She told me to keep singing till my last breath,’ said singer Samina Chowdhury.
‘Shahnaz promoted Bangla songs to global audience. The young musicians and singers of our country should follow in her footsteps,’ said Ekushey Padak winning director-producer-lyricist Gazi Mazharul Anwar.
‘I am lucky to have had the honour of knowing her. She was a good human being. I have learnt a lot from her,’ said singer Kanak Chapa.
Shahnaz Rahmatullah, born to M Fazlul Haque and Asia Haque in 1953 in Dhaka, began learning music at an early age.
Actor Zafar Iqbal and music director Anwar Parvez were her siblings.
She got national recognition at the age of eleven by becoming champion in the children’s music competition organised by the then Radio Pakistan in 1964.
In 1960s and 1970s, Shahnaz Rahmatullah became tremendously popular among the younger generation for her singing.
Ek nodi rokto periye, which she recorded for Khan Ataur Rahman’s Abar Tora Manush Ho (1973), is one of the timeless patriotic songs.
Around seven to eight years back Shahnaz took leave from singing.
‘She exited the stage as she was upset over the situation of the music scene,’ informed Syed Abdul Hadi.
Apart from Ekushey Padak (1992) and National Film Award (1990), Shahnaz Rahmatullah received numerous awards like Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy Award, Bangladesh Chalachitra Sangbadik Samity Award, Manik Mia Gold Medal and others for her contribution to the country’s music scene.
Want stories like this in your inbox?
Sign up to exclusive daily email
More Stories from Music