Mukhtar Sahota is a British Music Composer/Producer popularly associated with the group Sahotas. Born into a musical family, Mukhtar plays multiple instruments, all of which are self taught.
Mukhtar and his brothers decided to pursue a career in music, in the final years of school. They formed a band called the Sahotas, and made nine albums, coupled with tours around the world, and topped the ‘Bhangra’ charts. The Sahotas achieved many accolades including ‘Best Band’, ‘Best Live Band’, Platinum and Gold discs for album sales. Mukhtar wanted to take a different direction with his solo projects, as the band decided to take a long deserved break.
Mukhtar Sahota’s debut album Time Out was released in 2002. This album featured various artists from India, including the debut collaboration with Lehmber Hussainpuri. 4 The Muzik was released in August 2004, an album that features some big names in the Asian music industry, alongside various up coming artists from India. The first video from the album was for a track called Jogi, which is a fusion of rock and bhangra music, this was followed by the video, Rang Kala, both tracks went on to become huge hits.
After the major South Asian disasters in 2004 and 2005, Mukhtar produced and arranged the charity single, “We Can Make it Better” by Donasian. The funds raised from this single were for the victims of the tragedies. The concept of the single was inspired by the ‘Band Aid’ single, and sixteen Asian artists from around the world from different genres were united together from a list constructed by Mukhtar. This project allowed him to bring forth up-coming talent alongside established artists and was a great experience as a Music Producer working alongside A R Rahman who did the String Orchestration.
In 2006, Mukhtar decided to set up his own Record Company, Internalmusic, to allow him to have full control of his works, and to provide a platform for established, new, and up-coming talent. Mukhtar united with Arif Lohar of Pakistan for his first release under Internalmusic, and produced an album called, 21st Century Jugni, to re-introduce some classics of Alam Lohar, the Pakistani legend and hits from Arif Lohar. The album brought Arif Lohar to the sound of the 21st Century with the distinctive sound of Mukhtar Sahota. The album received an exceptional response from around the world and received awards for, ‘Best Folk Pop Album’, ‘Best Non Residential Punjabi Vocalist’, and ‘Best Folk Pop Vocalist’ at the Punjabi Music Awards in India in March 2007.
In May 2007, Mukhtar released Unpredictable, an album featuring Lakhwinder Wadali and his father Puran Chand Wadali. The album featured an array of musical genres including ‘Arabic’, ‘Electronic Beats’ and a ‘Qawali’ – Charkha, culminating into an ‘innovative musical feast’. The album has been appreciated and applauded by musicians from around the world and has had a positive reception from all generations.
In 2009, Mukhtar was approached by Meem Records to produce 6 tracks for a Nasheed Album, for a French Pakistani vocalist, Suhail Najmi. The album was titled Illahi and was released for Eid 2009.
Mukhtar Sahota worked with ‘A R Rahman’, Music Composer of ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ winner of Golden Globes, Bafta, Oscars and Grammys,’. Mukhtar worked together on various projects, most like in Bollywood film ‘Raavan’ (2010), and in 2009 Mukhtar composed the background score with A R Rahman for the Bollywood Film, ‘Blue’.
In July 2011, Mukhtar teamed up with, Harbhajan Shera, a vocalist from Punjab, India, and released an album called, ‘Khazana’, which was released worldwide. The album again featured various musical genres including, Rock, Arabic, Bhangra to more emotional and momentous tracks, an opulence of a musical experience. The album was launched with the video, ‘Dukh Thor Dithe’, a Rock fusion based track which has achieved a huge response worldwide. This was followed by the videos, ‘Aaja Veh’ and ‘Khazana’.
Mukhtar has produced songs for a number of Bollywood films, including the films, Saheb Biwi Aur Gangster, Diary of a Butterfly, Saheb, Biwi Aur Gangster Returns, and later for the Punjabi Films, Heer and Hero and Jatt James Bond featuring vocals of Rahat Fateh Ali Khan & Arif Lohar.