Enjoy this video highlighting Yusuf Mahmoud and son Ariz Mahmoud who performed live with other guest musicians at Belfast's Duncarin to raise awareness and funds for Afghanistan's musicians. 

Special thanks to
Beyond Skin for helping make this event happen.




The Scent of Kharabat: A Concert for Afghanistan

Temple Church, London

Tuesday 22 February


Tickets £10 - £30

Join us for an evening with Ustad Ghulam Hussain (rubab), Feraydoon Meyazada (tabla), and Gholam Najrabi (zirbaghali); all born and raised in Kabul, Afghanistan, but eventually forced to leave their country for their own safety. "The Scent of Kharabat" refers to the musicians' quarter in the old city which has produced many generations of Afghan musicians.

Proceeds to benefit musicians still in Afghanistan.

Click here for tickets and more information.

Concert for Musicians at Risk

The Duncairn Centre, Belfast

Saturday 29 January


Livestream £5

Yusuf Mahmoud & Son.JPG

Yusuf Mahmoud and son Ariz Mahmoud  perform live with other guest musicians at Belfast's Dundarin to raise awareness and funds for Afghanistan's musicians.  


YouTube link available


Feed the Soul Winter Benefit Concert - SAA-uk

Interplay Theatre, Leeds

Saturday 18 December


Join us for an evening of music and life-saving support for the musicians of Afghanistan. Help us raise  £16,000 to support 100 musicians and their families this winter through the Give a Little Bit of Life - Save Afghanistan's Musicians campaign. Many thanks to the Daanish Foundation, South Asian Arts - UK, and the Interplay Theater. 



Resilience: The Scent of Kharabat

Brunei Gallery, SOAS

Saturday 11 December


Tickets £5 - £25


In this concert, Ustad Asif Mahmud, his son Yusuf Mahmud, and his grandson along with Saphwat Simab bring to us their performance "The Scent of Kharabat" from Kabul to London. 


Located at the Eurasian crossroads, Afghanistan has soaked in Central Asian, Indian, Persian and Turkic cultures with evidence of these influences sensed in the rich musical heritage. Interestingly, the Persian word for music is ‘musiqi’, derived from the Greek “mousike”. The epicentre of musical creativity in Afghanistan has historically been the musicians’ Quarter in Kabul, Kucha-e Kharabat, where hereditary music practitioners have lived for generations. In the 1990s, with the ban on music and public performance by the Taliban, musicians from Kharabat around the country were forced to flee to Iran and Pakistan. Hereditary musicians such as Ustad Asif Mahmoud and his family — who now live in London — moved abroad, as Afghans tried to maintain their musical traditions in exile.

Unfortunately, history has repeated itself, and after 20 years of relative peace for musicians, the Taliban are back in force and pride — claiming the defeat of the West and their values. Once again, musicians are prime victims of the political unease.

Afghanistan's history is filled with excessive conflicts resulting in destruction, loss of life, damage to cultural heritage and, of course, the exodus of many people from their home country. However, as the great mystic poet of Balkh, Rumi, said: “Anyone who is separated from their roots, will pursue the path to be reunited” — these peoples of the arid Hindukush, with a great capacity for resilience, have always kept their heads up — defiant and raised. In Afghanistan we have an expression: “Taa risha dar aab ast, omid-e samar ast” — literally, “Until the roots are in the water, there is hope for fruit!”

Mirwaiss Sidiqi, London 01 December 2021