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.

During the early phase of conceptualizing what would become The Music of Islam, at least one volume was planned to be recorded in Iraq, in the ancient city of Basra. However, the tempest of world politics prevented us from accomplishing this goal.

With no legal means to enter Iraq our approach changed to a global search for Iraqi musicians. And to our surprise, in the beautiful port city of Doha in the small Emirate of Qatar on the east coast of the Arabian peninsula (not too far south of the Iraqi border), we discovered an expatriate community of Iraqi musicians, all born in Baghdad and graduates of Baghdad University.

The Music of Islam, Volume Four embraces some of the most beautiful Islamic music from Iraq, featuring the 'ud and various percussion instruments, performed by Iraqi master musicians who keep their music traditions alive in Qatar.

the artists

Producer David Parsons eloquently captures the traditional classical and art music of Iraq in this volume of The Music of Islam series featuring two expatriate musicians from Iraq.

Born in Iraq in 1389/1969, Mohammed Saleh Abd Al-Saheb Lelo, holds a degree in music from the Faculty of Fine Arts, Baghdad University, with a major focus on the 'ud (oud, a short-necked fretless lute) and qanun (a type of plucked board zither). He worked as a session musician for Iraqi broadcasting from 1409/1988-1416/1995 and has worked with most of the leading Iraqi vocalists. In addition to his recordings and numerous performances at major festivals in Iraq, Mohammed Saleh taught music courses at Baghdad University and Babel University and has published articles in local newspapers. Currently, Mohammed Saleh is the 'ud and qanun player for the Qatar Vision Advertising and Media Production Agency.

Haitham Hasan, born in 1389/1969, began playing percussion instruments at the age of nine. His training includes the study of all the Arabic percussion instruments. He has performed in major international music festivals and has recorded with many well–known Arabic singers. In this recording, Haitham is featured on the tabalah (a goblet drum), kasur (a small single–headed drum), riqq (tambourine), tar (a single–headed frame drum), sajat (copper finger cymbals), drenga (like the tabalah but more metallic in sound) and the tabl (a double–headed cylindrical drum).


1 QUAM NA DIMI 7'27"
3 TAQSIM I 3'40"
5 AL HAJR 7'12"
7 TAQSIM 2 6'21"
8 BEAD KONTO 6'40"
10 TAQSIM 3 5'50"
  Total Time: 64'49"