“We need to take care of young talents. I am begging, please take care of young talents – guitarists, drummers or keyboardists, whoever he or she is,” this is how Bangladesh’s rock legend Ayub Bachchu, who unexpectedly passed away on Thursday, appealed to the public on behalf of up-and-coming musicians.
Having known the hardships budding artists have to endure, especially when starting out, the multi-talented singer and songwriter wanted to see young talents across the country get support for their growth.
“This music world is in an uncertain path. We need to protect the artists. We need to send the title – insolvent musicians (dustho shilpi) – to the museum,” said one of the true pioneers of the genre that became known as Bangla ‘band music’, mostly inspired by Western rock and roll acts.
Ayub Bachchu, who had started his music career from his birth place Chittagong with the band Feelings in 1978, before finding fame with one of Bangladesh’s most famous bands, Souls, on lead guitar and sharing vocal duties.
He would go on to leave Souls citing creative differences, and form LRB, essentially the closest thing in Bangladesh to a superstar vehicle, in which Bacchu acted as lord and master.
Bacchu betrayed a patriotic soul once he took to wrapping up each of his live concerts to the tune of national anthem “Amar Sonar Bangla, Ami Tomai Valobasi” blaring from his guitar. Although knowing his rocker’s soul, he may just have been taking after one of his heroes Jimi Hendrix, who famously did the same with the US national anthem at a stage of his career.
Bacchu waited for long to introduce his son Ahnaf Tazwar Ayub, himself a budding guitarist, on the big stage.
“I wanted him (Ahnaf) to prove himself in a real way. I didn’t want to favor him as my son,” said Ayub Bachchu mostly known as AB.
The legendary name in the history of Bangladeshi Band music said though there are many young talents, everybody is scared of taking up music as profession.
“Being a father I was so happy to see my son playing guitar on big stage. But I was a bit sad, too,” he said on a note that this music industry does not provide a certain path.
Ayub Bachchu even wanted initiatives from the government to give priority to music industry, the way cricket was given priority from the state level.
In another TV conversation with singers Kumar Bishwajit and Bappa Mazumder, AB recalled his early struggles from when he first came to Dhaka in the late Seventies, putting up at a cheap hotel with his five other friends. “We were sharing vegetable for 1 person because we had limited money.”
The rock star said they had faced such moments when singing in wedding party was the only means to earn little.
“I remember, one day we had to go to Patiya from Chattogram by a tiny human-hauler with instruments. When we reached the spot, we realized there was no electricity. Then we were asked to sing without instruments,” the band music star said acknowledging that the outcome is always sweet when success is earned through struggle.
“Nothing can be achieved through short-cut way. Nothing is possible without continuous struggle,” he used to believe.
We’ll celebrate you till we take our last breath
Bappa Mazumder, a prominent singer, lyricist and composer, has paid tributes to rock legend and musical band LRB founder Ayub Bachchu in a different way by sharing a short video clip where he played guitar on AB’s famous song ‘Ferari Ei Monta Amar.’
“Just to express my love, respect and gratitude to Bachchu Bhai and his enormous creations that he has given us and enriched Bangla music and made us proud as a nation,” he wrote sharing the video on his Facebook page.
“Thank U (you) Boss for ur (your) music. We will celebrate u (you) till we take our last breath. Take my bow ......,” wrote Bappa who had deep relations with AB.
At the end, Bappa wrote, “Can't control my emotions though.”
Last tributes paid to Ayub Bachchu
On October 19, people from all walks of life paid their last tributes to celebrated guitarist, songwriter, composer and singer Ayub Bachchu at the Central Shaheed Minar when millions of fans in every corner of the country and abroad were mourning the irreparable loss.
The body was kept there for over two hours giving a chance to his fans, well-wishers and followers to see him for the last time.
Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader, Cultural Affairs Minister Asaduzzaman Noor, Sommilito Sangskritik Jote leaders including eminent drama personality Nasiruddin Yusuf Bachchu, Ayub Bachchu’s colleagues, fellow musicians, artistes and cultural activists along with people from all walks of life gathered there to pay their respects.
Singers, musicians, cultural personalities and fans placed wreaths on the coffin of Bachchu. They also observed one minute’s silence paying homage to the genius.
The fellow colleagues who had the opportunity to work closely with AB were sharing sorrows with each other recalling their memories with the rock star.
Noted singer and composer Nakib Khan who knew Bacchu since his early life said Ayub Bachchu will remain alive in their hearts.
“It’s an irreparable loss,” he said adding that Bachchu was not just a singer rather he was also a songwriter and composer.
Fahmida Nabi said this vacuum will exist as a golden chapter ends. “We are deeply saddened with his family members and millions of fans across the country. We pray for his departed soul.”
From the Central Shaheed Minar, the body was taken to National Eidgah where his first namaj-e-janaza was held after Jumma prayers joined by thousands of people.
The body was taken to his own studio AB Kitchen in city’s Moghbazar area where his second namaj-e-janaza was held.
The third namaj-e-janaza was held at Channel i premises. Later, the body was kept at the mortuary of Square Hospital.
The body of Ayub Bachchu was taken to Chattogram on October 20 by a flight of US-Bangla Airlines.The body, later, was taken to Ayub Bacchu's grandfather's (maternal) house at Madarbari in the port city. Bachchu was buried next to his mother at their family graveyard on the same day.
The rock star died of a heart attack in the capital on October 18 at the age of 56.
Rocking all the way – Career Milestones
With tremendous fan acceptance AB is famous for his fabulous guitar playing. He joined the band Souls in 1980, one of the pioneers in the band movement of Bangladesh.
In 1991 AB left Souls after 10 long years of practice for perfection and formed LRB (Love Runs Blind). AB brought up LRB from the deepest of his impulse, its something beyond high devotion for music.
LRB started to play live gigs on the following years and their history of proceeding began. Millions of music loving people accepted their music with love.
With the eagerness to create something revolutionary LRB released their first debut in 1992, which was a double album of Bangladeshi music history and entirely a new concept in Bangladeshi music and to the listeners as well.
LRB believe in self-criticism, in the salvation of their souls. That is why the entity and the band remain unparalleled in their type of music.
LRB performed in thousands of concerts at home and abroad both indoor and open. They went for their first international tour in USA and they played at seven US States.
LRB is the only Bangla Rock Band which played their music in the famous Medicine Square Garden (New York), according to LRB official website.
AB was honored in IIM Joka 'Rock Fest' (India), Benson & Hedges Star Search 1 & 2, DRockstar 1 & many other local competitions as a Judge.
He had worked as a music director for late Khalid Hasan Milu, late Shaikh Ishtiaqe, Nasim Ali Khan, Tapan Chowdhury, Hasan Abedur Reza Jewel, Alam Ara Minu, Kaniz Suborna, Rupom and others.