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eMusic Features

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Who is Arif Lohar? And Why Does He Have 9 Million YouTube Views?

By Richard Gehr, Contributor

Diminutive, rotund Arif Lohar looms large in the global pantheon of unlikely pop stars. Like his father, the renowned Alam Lohar, the Pakistani star sings Punjabi folk songs and ecstatic Sufi devotional music such as qawwali. In 2010, however, Arif Lohar's career took an unexpected mainstream turn when he appeared on Pakistan's hit the Coke Studio TV music series to perform a transcendent classical-pop fusion version of the Sufi classic "Alif Allah Chambey di Booti"… more »