Mukhtiyar Ali was born in a small village named Pugal near the Indo-Pak border (where the music-video below is shot), and belongs to the semi-nomadic community of Mirasis, who have been the traditional carriers of the oral tradition of the Sufiana qalam in India. The Mirasi are a Hindu, Muslim or Sikh caste found in Northern India; they are the genealogists for a number of communities in Northern India. Within the name Mirasi are a number of groups, each with its own history and its own myth. Some Mirasi groups are thought to be Muslim converts from the Hindu Dom caste, while others claim to have belonged to the Hindu Charan/bard community, said to have converted to Islam at the hands of Amir Khusrau. The word Mirasi is derived from the Arabic word miras, which means inheritance, or heritage. As hereditary genealogists, the Mirasi maintain pedigrees of their patrons and are often involved in the negotiation of marriages; they sometime style themselves as Nassab khawan, or the keepers of family trees. They are also known Pakhawaji from the pakhawaj - pakshavadya or two-sided Indian drum - that they play.
Mukhtiar Ali blends the Rajasthani folk idiom with Hindustani classical tunes, to sing the qalam of Badar Ali:
Nit Khair Mangi Sohniya Main Teri, Dua Na Koi Aor Mangdi
Tere Pairanch Akhir Hove Meri, Dua Na Koi Aor Mangdi
Everyday, Beloved, I pray Thee be well, for naught else I ask.
May I be at Thy feet in my end, for naught else I ask.
Tere Pyar Ditta Jado Da Sahara Ve, Mainu Bhul Gai Mai Jag Sara Ve
Khushi Eho Mainu Sajna Batheri, Dua Na Koi Aor Mangdi
Ever since Thy love's support, the world around me I could forget.
This joy is all I need, my love, for naught else I ask.
Tu Mileya Te Mil Gayi Khudai Ve, Hath Jode Akha Payi Na Judai Ve
Mar Jawangi Je Ankh Metho Pheri, Dua Na Koi Aor Mangdi
With Thee, I experience Oneness; folded hands, I pray we never part.
I will be no more if Thy eyes turn from me, for naught else I ask.
Eho Rab Tainu Mangiya Duawa Ve, Alla Kare Teri Aayi Mar Jawa Ve
Hathi Badar Banawi Saadi Dheri, Dua Na Koi Aor Mangdi
So I ask this of God; Allah take me instead when Thy time comes
May Badar but be of service to Thee, for naught else I ask.