Towfique Ahmed was a teenager then. One of his uncles took him to the practice pad of Black, the prominent Bangladeshi band, one day. He sat beside Tony, the famous drummer of Black, who told him something that shook Towfique like electricity and eventually changed the course of his career path. All Tony said was: "I want to see you in the newspaper someday. I know someday you will be there."
That teenager is now one of the best rappers in the Bangladeshi music industry. He and his band 'Rajotto' have been releasing albums and singles for a few years now. Towfique Ahmed is currently a lawyer and a teacher whose passion is rap. He talks about corruption, inequality, and humanism in his songs. He has hits like 'Desh o Durniti,' 'Bidrohi,' 'Potissruti,' 'Nodi,' 'Char Beharar Palki,' and many more. He has a unique style and a way of conveying messages which are connecting with youths and inspiring them.
"My family is cultural-minded. My mother was involved with the Sishu Academy and my father with Udichi. I think it was in my DNA. I used to learn tabla from where my sense of rhythm came from. I used to take lessons on singing too," reminisced Towfique. He got his first opportunity to work in a team during his college years when a group of students came to practice music in his college auditorium. Towfique performed as a tabla player in that group where his journey began.
"One day we decided to form a band and as I had the basic knowledge of rhythm through tabla, I chose the drums. We were doing well in different competitions. In 2005, we performed Warfaze's ‘Alo’ in inter cadet college competition. We won the best band award which was handed over to us by the late Sanjib Chowdhury, the singer of the band 'Dalchut.' It was a wonderful experience," shared Towfique.
Although most rappers have the influence of veterans like Eminem or 2Pac, Towfique followed bands like Linkin Park, Rise Against the Machine initially for motivation. After cadet college days were over, Towfique went to England to study law. His band was disbanded and everyone got busy with their studies. This period was all about loneliness for him, and somewhat the push for stepping into music.
Once, he came to know about a Bangalee community in England and went to hang out with them. There he met Faisal Roddy, a filmmaker and his future companion with Rajotto. Music brought the duo close as Towfique went on saying, "I went to Faisal Bhai's place and believe it or not, we made fifteen songs in a single night." "However," Towfique added, "We had no money to record our songs. Members of the Bangladeshi community raised money for our first recording."
Towfique began his journey of music videos with an American man named Nicholas Americanos, who proposed to invest after hearing the practice session of Towfiq and Faisal. Nicholas offered them a contract from the global music corporation Universal Music. Although the offer was made for recording songs in English, he eventually liked the Bangla language music video that the duo eventually produced. However, the contract offered by Nicholas didn't happen.
"Just when we were about to go to see the Universal Music team, my visa expired and I had to return to Bangladesh."
In 2010 Rojotto recorded their demo album and eventually, they released the album titled 'Rajotto.' The album was produced by Gareth who is an English musician. It garnered popularity among youths. At that time, Towfique's father was fighting cancer. He had a wish to release the album before his father departed. After his father's demise, a heartbroken Towfique made the song 'Char Beharar Palki,' which he dedicated to his late father.
Towfique Ahmed's songs bear strong messages. He spits on the traitor of 1971 in his song 'Bidrohi.' In 'Desh o Durniti,' he talked about the harsh reality and the corruption of our country. Unlike many others, he is trying to bring a change and he is optimistic about it. He wants the youth to belong to Bangalee culture and pledges to keep working for that purpose. He is currently preparing to release his next solo album, which is scheduled to come out at the end of this year.