PMR: First of all thank you for giving us your valuable time.
Mahmood Rahman:Like wise,its a pleasure
PMR: how did you guys come up with the name ‘Overload ‘?
Mahmood Rahman: Overload originally started as collaboration between Pappoo Saeein, who’s no longer featuring with band, and Farhad. Eventually more music, percussion and now eventually vocals have been added to the mix, resulting in this album: Pichal Pairee. Our name came about when we performed our first gig, where we blew the sound system because we were just too loud! We OVERLOADED the sound system.
PMR:‘ Pichal Pairee’ has been highly appreciated by people, how do you feel after your release?
Mahmood Rahman: The response has been overwhelming on the internet, the radio and television. We thought we were taking a chance releasing an English song without the saeeins, but the response has been good, and Meesha has been welcomed very well. There are Punjabi and Urdu songs on the album, too, which shall be released shortly.
PMR:Tell us about Meesha, the new voice of Overload?
Mahmood Rahman: Meesha is a very talented artist who’s recently joined the ranks of Overload as a full-time band member, not featured like the dhol players. She’s a painter, a model and a singer.
PMR:Besides music, what else do you guys do?
Mahmood Rahman: Farhad has his event management company and studio, Riot Productions, which keep him busy, Sheraz, is an accounting teacher by day and rockstar by night and Meesha has her modelling that keeps her busy. Me, I’m a full-time musician.
PMR: What really distinguishes you from other bands, what’s your real strength?
Mahmood Rahman: I think our strongest point is that we’re all accomplished musicians, by which I mean making a song in alternate time signatures is second nature to us, as is making regular rock songs. There’s a very large gap in the market as far as female vocalists go, there really any that are both great singers and umm…visually appealing as well.
PMR: Being musicians, is it a childhood dream or a university minor?
Mahmood Rahman: It’s basically all we want to do. None of us are trained or schooled musicians, so I guess it’s a childhood dream.
PMR: What’s been a real difficulty you faced as being a new band?
Mahmood Rahman: I know this has been said a lot, and might sound like a cliché, but there’s no infrastructure. Nobody’s willing to sign up a band and promote it out of out their own pockets. And what makes sense to me is if nobody’s willing to invest in you, they’re not going to be trying very hard to promote you either. Abroad, you have agents and managers and record labels, not the so-called record labels that you have here. They sign you up, pay for your album and it’s engineers, producers, mixing, mastering, make videos for you, and then release the end product. Here, they think they’re doing you a big favour by making one Rs 30,000 video on something that we’ve spent 3 years of hard work on. No thank you, we’ll release our own album.
PMR: Who do you guys really admire as your ideal?
Mahmood Rahman: We want to be us, a unique and individual entity that you can’t really compare to anyone else.
PMR: What genre of music do you consider your work to be?
Mahmood Rahman: It’s some sort of contemporary-world music-rock.
PMR:How long have you all known each other? How did you meet?
Mahmood Rahman: I’ve known Farhad for 27 years, and we’ve been working together for about the last five of those. Sheraz and Farhad have been playing music together for about 15 years, and Meesha and I got to know each other in college, the National College of Arts, where we played a lot of music onstage and otherwise.
PMR: When did you form your band? What inspired you to make music together?
Mahmood Rahman:All of us had previously been doing music in some form or the other; Farhad and I both have been session players for artists like Noori and Fuzon for Farhad and Atif Aslam for me. It was only a matter of time before we played music together, and now we’re at a point where I don’t think I’d be happy playing with anyone else!
PMR: What advice do you have for people who want to form their own bands?
Mahmood Rahman: You have to aim not for a hit single, but to be a credible musician first. Playing three basic chords isn’t enough to make you a hit, you have to put in weeks of practice and studying music before you start playing with other people. Also, playing covers is fine, but it’s not enough, you have to come up with something original, carve your own niche, do something that hasn’t been done before.
PMR: How can fans-to-be gain access to your music?
Mahmood Rahman: In reaction to the horrible so-called record label situation here, we’re going to release high-quality MP3’s of our music on our official website, www.overloadbeats.com, and shall keep adding new music to it also.
PMR: What disturbs you the most when you are doing music?
Mahmood Rahman: Not much, actually. I get paid to do what I love, and hanging out with my friends. Even conflicts while making music are constructive, and something or the other either gets resolved or grows from conflict.
PMR: Who has supported/supporting in your music?
Mahmood Rahman: For me, everyone. From my family to my friends to fans, they’ve always been supportive. I don’t think anyone has ever come up to me and told me that I sucked, and perhaps I should just stop making music, or that my music was boring.
PMR: Tell us about your next project in the market?
Mahmood Rahman: We’re going to be touring a lot soon, and once we’re done with that, we’ll be back in the studio making new music.
PMR: How do you see the internet market for upcoming/underground bands in terms of a marketing tool?
Mahmood Rahman: It’s great! We’re going in the same direction, and to be contemporary and up to date, you have to keep up with the times. The internet is a great marketing tool, but only if you have your material, band, and everything else together.
PMR: Let us know how you think videos are an important music promotion source?
Mahmood Rahman: They’re the biggest promotional source! Everyone watches tv, and music videos are practically advertisement for a band.
PMR: Do you plan your events & media work before hand or things just come your way?
Mahmood Rahman: A little bit of both, I think. We plan our own events and media, but a lot of the times things come our way.
PMR: Any concerts you guys planning?
Mahmood Rahman: Yes, we’re playing in Lahore, Karachi and Islamabad a lot, and then the smaller cities. We have our album launch shows in these cities, and we’ll also be doing regular shows there soon.
PMR: We’d love to have a word from you for PakmediaRevolution and its team?
Mahmood Rahman: We’d like to thank PMR and its team for keeping the internet alive and kicking with the sound of Pakistani music, because there’s a lot of it and it’s great!
PMR: Let’s wrap this thing up, any last words for your fans?
Mahmood Rahman: Yes. Learn to question music, only then will you be able to differentiate good music from the bad, the one hit wonders from the long term music makers, and you’ll expose yourself to great music. Pop music comes and goes, but great music is timeless!
Interview by: Syed Azher Akber