Abdul Basit 'Abd us-Samad
|Died||November 30, 1988 (aged 61-62)
|Occupation||Qari (Qur'an Reciter)|
|Known for||Surat Al-Ahzab|
|Title||Qari 'Abdul Basit|
Qari ‘Abdul-Basit ‘Abdus-Samad (1927–1988) (عبد الباسط عبد الصمد), was a renowned Qari (reciter of the Qur'an). As such, many modern reciters try to imitate his style. Qari to have won three world Qira'at competitions in the early 1970s. ‘Abdus-Samad was one of the first huffaz to make commercial recordings of his recitations, and the first president of the newly formed Reciters' Union in Egypt. He is best known for his recitation of sura al-Fatiha, the first chapter of the Qur'an, and a key sura in the five daily Islamic canonical prayers.
‘Abdul-Basit was born in a village near Armant city in southern Egypt. His father was a Kurd from North of Iraq and his mother an Arab from Egypt.
In 1950, he came to Cairo where Muslims in many mosques were captivated by his recitations. On one occasion, he was reciting verses from sura al-Ahzab (The Confederates) he was requested to recite for longer than his allotted 10 minutes by his audience, and continued to recite for over an hour and a half; his listeners were captured by his mastery of pitch, tone and the rules of tajweed (Qur'anic recitation).
‘Abdus-Samad travelled extensively outside Egypt; in 1961, he recited at the Badshahi Masjid, in Lahore, Pakistan. He visited Indonesia (1964/1965 ), Jakarta, and recited Qor'an at biggest Mosque, the entire room of the mosque was full of audience, even the frontyard, about 1/4 million people hearing his recitation till dawn. Also in Pekalongan (city of Batik ), he recited at the Masjid Jame' (Masjid Kauman), His recitation was ashtonished all the audience. In 1987, whilst on a visit to America, ‘Abdus-Samad related a story from one trip he made to the Soviet Union, with then Egyptian president Gamal Abdel Naser.
‘Abdus-Samad was asked to recite for some leaders of the Soviet party. ‘Abdus-Samad recounts that four to five of his listeners from the Communist Party were in tears on hearing the recitation, although they didn't understand what was being recited, but they cried, apparently touched by his recitation.
Indira Gandhi, an Indian prime minister and political leader always felt touched by his recitation and would stop alongside to appreciate his recitation.
‘Abdus-Samad died of acute hepatitis on Wednesday, November 30, 1988, and is survived by his three sons (from oldest to the youngest): Yasir, Hisham, and Tariq. Following his father's footsteps, Yasir has also become a "Qari". Qari Abdul Basit is also the best Qari in the world