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The Music of Islam Sampler (13159). In seiner aufwendigen Forschungsarbeit folgt David Parsons den vielfältigen Spuren der heutigen islamischen Musik zurück bis zu den Wurzeln. Das Ergebnis ist eine Produktion, die international Aufsehen erregte und 1998 den Preis der Deutschen Schallplattenkritik erhielt: Auf insgesamt 17 CDs spielen und singen Gnawas und Derwische, Muezzins und Volksmusiker. Von Indonesien und Pakistan bis Tunesien und Südspanien reicht das geografische Spektrum, über 12 Jahrhunderte das historische. Zu jeder CD gibt es ein sehr informatives, etwa 50-seitiges Begleitheft (in englisch). Man kann die CDs einzeln oder als Gesamtpaket in einer Holzbox erwerben. Hier die Zusammenfassung der ganzen Serie. Ausgezeichneter Einstieg.

the project

Ten years in the making, The Music of Islam series recorded in Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia, Turkey, Yemen, Pakistan, Indonesia, Iran and Qatar represents the most comprehensive sound documentation available to Westerners today, of a world religion dating back to 1/622. Although governed by strict rules for fourteen centuries, contact with other cultures has radically affected Islamic music throughout history. As the world enters the XV/21st century the timing of this collection serves an even larger purpose, documenting the traditions that have survived and will continue to survive for centuries to come. Today, one fifth of the world's population, one billion people, are Muslims, occupying a large territory stretching from the Atlantic shore of north and west Africa, through west, central, and south Asia to island southeast Asia, and attracting an increasing following in India, western Europe, north America, east Asia, and southern Africa. This is a global presence which cannot be ignored.

The Sinai, under the control of Egypt today, is a triangular peninsula bridging North Africa and the Middle East. The unique and varied landscape, resources, demands and dangers of the South Sinai has allowed the Bedouin there to develop their own lifestyle and culture. The Bedouin music culture also developed against the backdrop of the desert—a place of intense silence. Out of the silence, the desert Bedouin culture has evolved a profound sensitivity and mystical appreciation for sound which permeates every aspect of Bedouin life. The piercing cry of women's ululations express acclaim on festive occasions, the plaintive melody of the shepherdess's flute accompanies her watch over the sheep and goats, and the rhythmic beating of framedrums exorcise evil spirits from holy places and tombs. But for the Bedouin, the most subtle and charged of man-made sounds is the spoken or sung word.

Bedouin music is probably the oldest part of the entire repertoire of folk music in the Arab world. Thus, this recording is a celebration as well as a sound document of their traditional culture and unique identity.

the artists

From the harsh and beautiful land of desert plains and rugged red–brown and black mountains—the South Sinai—this volume features the traditional folk music of the legendary desert nomads. Recorded in a single night, in a dry riverbed under a full moon, the backdrop of the desert offered a priceless doorway into this ancient culture, people and music, capturing their very essence.

The South Sinai Bedouin singers and musicians featured in this recording not only symbolize the survival and legacy of their ancestors, but of future generations to come. With a declining population (about 200,000 as of 1418/1997) and facing inevitable society changes from impending modernization, their preservation is critical.

The group consists of musical director, lead singer, 'ud (fretless lute) and simsimiyya (five-string lyre) player Selim Seliman; poet-singer and rabab (one-stringed fiddle) player Haj-Mohamed Ouda; singers Ghaneb Mohamed, Awad Gomaa, Mosallam Soliman, Aly Hemeid, Mohamed Abdallah, Ayed Hamdan, Hussein Awad, Hemeid Abdallah, Mohamed Hemeid and Meneify Hamdan; and percussionist (oil-can drum) Soliman Hussein.


1 BA'AD AL- 'ASAHA (After Dinner) 5'56"
2 FI SOLAM AL TAEIRA (On the Aircraft Steps) 2'56"
3 LALA TODAYWQOUIN AL-TARFI (Do Not Bother al-Tarif) 4'30"
4 EL BANAT METALEMAT (The Girls are Educated) 3'18"
6 MILI 'ALLAYA MILI (Lean on Me, Lean) 5'29"
7 QASIDAH (Poem) 4'07"
8 YA RIM (Oh Gazelle) 4'07"
10 YA WARID AL- MA, ASQINI SHARABAN (You Who are Going to the Water Hole) 4'24"
11 SID EL 'ARAB (Master of the Arabs) 3'07"
12 NARTIJI WA AL- RAJA FI ALLAH (We hope in God) 2'47"
13 KHELLI YA KHELLI (Beloved Oh Beloved) 4'22"
14 GAL AL WADA' (She Said Farewell) 3'34"
15 BARHUM YA BARHUM (Abraham, oh Abraham) 4'56"
16 AHLAN WA SAHLAN (Welcome, Welcome) 3'38
  Total Time: 75'23"