Mahmood Khan is a Pakistani-born singer, songwriter, sound engineer, music producer and film maker. Originally from Lahore, Khan was the first Pakistani national to achieve mainstream success within the Australia music industry.
After moving to Los Angeles, United States, in the late 1980s, Khan was employed as a second engineer at Jam Power, a music production house. He was employed there for 12 years, eventually being promoted to chief sound engineer and music producer. During this period, Khan undertook the Seth Riggz voice training program to develop his voice. He also developed his song writing skills and was successful in entering several song writing contests in Hollywood. Through his position at Jam Power, Khan was involved in producing music for developing artists, and his knowledge of the music industry subsequently increased.
In 1995, Khan released Fairytale, his first solo album in the US. The album was released on Khan's own record label. While Fairytale was not a commercial success, it attracted the attention of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, who approached Khan in 1997 to propose a collaboration.
Khan's second solo album, Only One, was released in 1997, and featured Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan's last known recordings before his death. Mahmood Khan was the lead vocalist, songwriter, producer and sound engineer on the Only One album. Solid Records and Magna Sound India released the album to international acclaim, with the tracks "Teri Yaad" and "Janeman" featuring in the Sanjay Dutt film, Kartoos.
Khan's next album, Alive, was released by Vanilla Music, Dubai. The lead track, "Panah", was distributed by Magna Sound India; however, the album was not commercially viable and was considered "ahead of its time."
While in Pakistan in 2000, Khan learned how to produce video clips. His first video clip promoted his single, "Tere Baghair", and received air play on national Pakistani television. Khan subsequently produced and directed the music videos accompanying his next two singles, "Enuff Misfortune", a reaction to 9/11 events, and "Kissi Manzil", a tribute to the Pakistani public school he attended.
In 2004, Khan was commissioned by the Government of Pakistan to compose the music for the opening and closing ceremonies of the 9th South Asian Federation Games, hosted in Islamabad.
Khan is credited with developing a new genre of music, "modern funk," in collaboration with his band, Mahmood Khan Funk.
In 2007, Khan relocated to Sydney, to undertake studies at Sydney Film School. In 2009, he successfully graduated from the institute.
Khan's performance at the Sydney Opera House was recorded and a live album of the concert was released. The track, "Like the River", from this recording achieved a number one ranking on the mainstream Australian music charts.
During his time in Australia, Khan was involved in a charity fundraising effort to benefit the Red Cross Society. Along with 40 Australian artists, he recorded the track, "We Could Be Paradise". Khan was responsible for producing and directing the video clip that accompanied the track.
In January 2010, Khan was invited to sing the Pakistani national anthem at the opening ceremony of the cricket test match between Australia and Pakistan.
In early 2011, Khan's YouTube channel had received over 50 million views. To showcase his most popular tracks, Khan was invited to perform live on Australian television, an occasion marking one of the few appearances of a Pakistani musician on a national, commercial broadcast channel.
In 2011, Khan was formally recognised by the Australian government as a "Distinguished Talent".[clarification needed]
Zsolt Nagy, a Hungarian film maker, has produced a documentary, Journey of a New Sound, focusing on Khan's life in Australia. The documentary highlights Khan's experiences of being challenged and rewarded during his time in Australia, and is described by Khan as an example of "how under extreme pressure, the human spirit is able to beat the odds".
As of 2012, Khan has resided in Los Angeles, undertaking work on a feature film, Labrador. Khan is cited as the writer, director, producer and music director for the film. Flip Kobler, known for developing the screenplays for The Lion King 2 and Beauty and the Beast: The Enchanted Christmas, has been engaged to develop the screenplay for Labrador. Khan will collaborate with the Showdown Staging Company to produce the film.
- "Mahmood Khan tops 50 million online video streams", PR Log (press release), 20 July 2011.
- Sutar, Chirag (20 February 2010). "Mahmood Khan – 'I think Michael Jackson is a good example of talent completely manipulated by the Industry'", radioandmusic.com
- "Changing Times.... Black President in the White House and Black music from Pakistan", PR Log (press release), 29 November 2009.
- "Mahmood Khan's story. A salute to the singer/songwriter of the Sub Continent", PressReleasePoint, 7 March 2010.