Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Hamza El Din|
Genres: Folk, World Music, Jazz, Pop
Unique among Middle Eastern artists, El Din is a Nubian oud player and singer from the Sudan who studied his craft in Cairo, and fashioned the oud--normally used for accompaniment or in ensembles--into a solo instrument, c... more »
Unique among Middle Eastern artists, El Din is a Nubian oud player and singer from the Sudan who studied his craft in Cairo, and fashioned the oud--normally used for accompaniment or in ensembles--into a solo instrument, combining Nubian and Arabic musical gestures. Eclipse--produced by Grateful Dead drummer and world-music champion Mickey Hart--exploits elastic rhythms and repetitive motifs in moody, majestic pieces like "Helalisa," the lovelorn song of an Egyptian field hand, and "Your Love Is Ever Young," inspired by Egypt's late queen of song, Um Kalthoum. Fans of Turkish oud masters (like the great Udi Hrant) will find El Din's penetrating tone and attack familiar, though his arrangements and vocal accompaniments are a different beast altogether, producing an evocative, melancholy music that draws on several traditions simultaneously. --James Rotondi
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Ancient and timeless . . .
The Delite Rancher | Phoenix, Arizona | 06/27/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Hamza El Din is one of those amazing performers that you have been searching for your entire life. His vocal and musical abilities are sublime. At the same time, his music sounds both ancient and accessible. Hamza's music is meditational. The songs will gently paint pictures in your mind of the rolling Nubian desert scenery. Much is said of his musical abilities, but the rhythm is also a highlight as the doumbeks and handclaps add to the trance inducive sounds. His voice is very deep (like an Egyptian Johnny Cash) and his oud style expressive. Traditionally, the oud is an accompanying instrument and is almost never played by itself and usually does little or no improvisation. It is Hamza who can maintain the integrity of this music while being an innovator at the same time.
For those of you who know the Grateful Dead, you will know that the band worked with Hamza beginning with their trip to Egypt in 1978. Throughout the 70s and 90s, Hamza joined the band on stage many times -and for good reason. In the new millennium, Hamza still plays with Mickey Hart's Planet Drum.
Hamza has many great albums like "Songs of the Nile" (JVC, 1982) and "Lily of the Nile" (Water Lily Acoustics, 1990) but this is his best. While I've heard a few songs here played on other albums, there's something special about "Eclipse." The only explanation is producer Mickey Hart.
Did you know that the oud is the root instrument where the modern electric guitar comes from? Travel back to your roots, to the collective roots of humanity and listen to something that is both ancient and timeless."
Ruler of the Oud!
davehinsanfran | San Francisco, CA USA | 01/07/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Hamza's Eclipse is his best album. Only 5 tracks but each is a gem. Song #3 Olin Arageed is a Nubian wedding song played once in a person's lifetime as they exchange their vows. You can almost feel thousands of years of history as you listen to it. All of Hamza's albums are great - but sound similar to each other. If I were to buy just one, Eclipse is the way to go. Produced by Mickey Hart it sounds terrific and somewhat slick - but not overly so."
davehinsanfran | 07/04/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you have been interested in Middle-Eastern/North African music but don't know where to start--open your world and buy this amazing CD from one of the masters of the oud! This is a very powerful recording. Close your eyes and experience the silky sounds of the oud, El Din's voice, and a wonderful track in which rhythmic hand clapping is taken to a new level."