India’s famous 21st Century import from Pakistan, Atif Aslam was born in Wazirabad in Pakistan. His family soon moved to Lahore, where he completed his education, even as he nursed the dream of becoming a cricketer and playing for the country. While still at college, he was encouraged to participate at music competitions, which was where he tasted success first.
His rendition of “Duur”, a song by another Pakistani pop group Strings, won him the first prize at one such event. This was also the time when he met most of the bandmates of the pop group ‘Jal’, which he was initially the lead singer of. He spent money out of his own pocket to record his first hit, “Aadat”, along with the band. After he parted ways with Jal, he carried on as a solo artiste. The song became extremely popular and was played on most major Pakistani Radio stations. However, differences began to crop between him and other members of ‘Jal’, which led him to part ways, pursuing a solo career.
In 2004, he released his first solo Album “Jalpari”, which was heard and appreciated not only in Pakistan, but India as well. He was immediately signed to sing “Bheegi Yaadein” for the film “Zeher” (2005) by music director Anu Malik. Though ‘Jal’ accused the both of them for having stolen their song, Atif Aslam got his first Filmfare Award nomination for it. His second album, “Doorie” came out in 2006, by which time, he was recognised in India for songs like “Aadat” (“Kalyug”, 2005) and “Tere Bin” (“Bas Ek Pal”, 2006). His third album “Meri Kahani” which was released in 2008 did not grasp much attention but Bollywood did it for him. It was one song that dominated the charts for a whole year - “Pehli Nazar” (“Race”, 2008), even though the song and its music director Pritam earned a lot of flak for copying a Korean tune. “Bakhuda” (“Kismat Konnection”, 2008), “Tera Hone Laga Hoon” (“Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani”, 2009), “Aa Bhi Ja Sanam” (“Prince”, 2010), one more best selling album and a number of live performances later, Atif made his debut as an actor with Shoaib Mansoor’s “Bol” (2011), a critically acclaimed film, where he also composed and sang songs in. Eying the international music scene, Atif Aslam claimed to be working on a international project called “The Dreamer Awakes” along with well known rock band Guns ‘n’ Roses.