♫ Raga Adana
[Courtesy: Qadir Shaggan, Suhaib Kiani & Taimur Khan of sarangi.info]
Ghulam Hassan Shaggan was born in Amritsar in 1928. His father’s name was Bhai Lal Mohammad (d. 1962). Bhai Lal belonged to the Gwalior-Kapurthala Gharana and received training from his father Bhai Ata Mohammad, and later from Mian Mehboob Ali Khan Kapurthalwi (sitar nawaz) and Pandit Bhaskarao. Bhai Lal was grooming his eldest son, Nissar Hassan as his heir. Ghulam Hassan started going to school at the age of four while Nissar Hassan accompanied his father at various mehfils and music conferences. In 1936, Nissar Hassan died at the age of 26, and the father was so grieved that he did not perform anywhere for the next four years. Ultimately, Bhai Lal decided to train his younger son to keep the family tradition alive and Ghulam Hassan had to quit school at the age of nine and commence formal taleem.
Bhai Lal and Shaggan Sahib moved to Pakistan in 1947 and settled in Lahore. Bhai Lal was appointed music supervisor at Radio Pakistan where Shaggan Sahib also performed once a month. That was a time of intense emotional and financial troubles which abated over a period of 12 years, as Shaggan Sahib gained recognition and started performing more frequently at Radio Pakistan, The All Pakistan Music Conference (Established 1959), and other events in Pakistan and abroad.
Among several titles and awards, Shaggan Sahib received the Sangeet Samrat at the music conference in Calcutta in 1962, the Pride of Performance in 1988 and Sitara-e- Imtiaz in 2000 from the Government of Pakistan. Shaggan Sahib currently lives in Lahore with his sons Qadir Shaggan (vocalist & music director) and Mazhar Shaggan (Rabab & mandolin player), and continues to perform in Pakistan and India.