Rubab Nayeem Khan converses with Maher Khan and finds out more about his life sans music.
One doesn’t have to be an avid follower of local music to know Maher Khan; the name itself speaks a thousand words. After the release of Nemesis’ album Tritio Jatra in 2011, Maher created ripples in the music industry and among fans when he announced that he was quitting not just the band, but music entirely, in order to follow the path of Islam.
Tell us a little something about your life after Nemesis?
Life after Nemesis has been less eventful, in all honesty. I’ve kept myself busy trying to study Islam, work, learn, spend time with the family which of course if you ask my wife, she’ll tell you otherwise!
Have you faced difficulties coping with the drastic changes?
Not as much as I expected. I thought I’d suffer from some kind of withdrawal, considering that music had been my life for a long time. I suppose I got distracted with my new life. The only real difficulty I did face was not being able to see my friends from Nemesis as much as I did before. That was tough.
How did this sudden change affect you?
It greatly affected my perception of life from what it was before to what it is now. Once the purpose of life starts to mean something substantial, everything else starts to take a back seat.
What is your favourite activity of the day?
I’d be lying if I said my favourite activity is going to the gym, so I think I’ll go with “dinner”.
How do you look forward to celebrating Eid?
The usual; spending the first day with relatives, second with friends, and the third with anything that turns out to be interesting (sleep). Most of all, I look forward to a Dhaka with breathable air and drivable roads.
What is it that brings you closer to your goals?
Persistence and diligence – neither of which I’ve worked on enough. When I see that I’ve been working on something and it’s not enough it gives me perspective that maybe there’s more room for improvement.
What’s your favourite memory from your musician years?
The times when we didn’t consider ourselves musicians because, back then we were just a bunch of guys doing what we really loved to do.
Music requires a lot of dedication, patience and practice. Have you been able to fill those gaps since Nemesis?
Music was a small part of my life. Religion is very holistic; hence I study and do my research in order to keep myself occupied.
Have you ever been asked by fans to return to music? What was your reaction?
Yes, I still do. However, I won’t be returning to music.
Did you ever have the urge to pick up your guitar every once in a while?
Yes I have. But the fact that I don’t play doesn’t bother me.
What’s your favourite song/album by Nemesis?
I love them all and that wasn’t a diplomatic answer.
A message for those who are trying to pursue the path of Islam
Not all knowledge is beneficial. There are things worth investing your time and effort in; things that will benefit you now and after you’re gone. Accept information that has authentic sources and reject everything that doesn’t. Don’t believe everything you hear, read the text.