A few years later, Ilham left Baghdad to England to study Architecture. When Ilham returned to Baghdad in 1967, he formed his well-known band (13 ½). He reached a peak in popularity throughout the 70s; he was Iraq’s most popular musician all during the 70s.
Then in 1990 Ilham decided to restart his musical career. He formed Firqat Ilham (Ilham's Band).
Ilham's outstanding talent is recognized throughout the world. Most of his releases are from his own musical compositions such as Khuttar, Chathab, Maasaal, Baghdad,Ana Blayak and others.