with Farhad Darya
the Taliban was driven from Kabul, music was once again allowed.
The first song played on Radio Afghanistan was "Kabul Jaan",
by Farhad Darya, an Afghan singer in exile since 1990. Now living
in Sterling, VA, he spoke with TIME's Jeffrey Ressner.
What does "Kabul Jaan" mean?
It means "Beloved Kabul."
What are some of the lyrics?
"Beloved Kabul"/ Let me sing limitless songs for the agony
of the Afghans/ For my
homeless, wandering people/ Let me sing from Iran down to Pakistan."
Was it a hit before you left?
No. I composed the song in Afghanistan, but when I left the country
I recorded it in Paris, and then I released the album in Germany.
The Mujahedin played the same song when they entered Kabul.
What happened to other popular Afghan singers over the past decade?
Most of the artists fled, a couple of them were killed, and some
of them said goodbye to music.
Did the Taliban outlaw all forms of music?
There was still some music played, but without accompaniment by
any instruments. The Taliban have their own singers, but its style
is kind of like hamming.
When are you going back home?
When I can perform as a free musician in Afghanistan, I will go-not
as a tourist but to live.