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Music of the Bukharan Jewish Ensemble Shashmaqam
Shashmaqam
Music of the Bukharan Jewish Ensemble Shashmaqam
Genres: Folk, World Music, Pop
 
  •  Track Listings (13) - Disc #1

Shashmaqam, a New York based ensemble recognized in their homeland for their extraordinary musical talent, has been performing music and dance from their native Uzbekistan and Tadzhikistan since 1983. Their music reflects ...  more »

      
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CD Details

All Artists: Shashmaqam
Title: Music of the Bukharan Jewish Ensemble Shashmaqam
Members Wishing: 1
Total Copies: 0
Label: Smithsonian Folkways
Original Release Date: 8/28/1991
Re-Release Date: 7/13/1992
Genres: Folk, World Music, Pop
Styles: Jewish & Yiddish, Europe, Eastern Europe, Middle East
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPCs: 093074005422, 093074005446

Synopsis

Album Description
Shashmaqam, a New York based ensemble recognized in their homeland for their extraordinary musical talent, has been performing music and dance from their native Uzbekistan and Tadzhikistan since 1983. Their music reflects the many diverse cultures of the region. Perhaps the most distinctive element of their sound is a dramatic and disciplined vocal tradition. Fatima Kuinova, founding member and vocalist, was awarded a National Heritage Fellowship by the National Endowment for the Arts in 1992. "... brings to life the rich and diverse musical traditions of Central Asia, where Jewish and Moslem musicians long co-existed in a flourishing cultural symbiosis." -- NAIRD Notes
 

CD Reviews

Music of Uzbekhistan: Hidden Central Asian Treasure
Erika Borsos | Gulf Coast of FL, USA | 03/22/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Hearing this music for the first time, I felt I was playing an interactive video game called "Raiders of the Lost Ark". I discovered this music by listening to the two CD set, "Hidden Gate: Jewish Music from Around the World". When Shashmaqam played, I was nearly blown away by a tsunami. In a word, I was "hooked". The music is astonishing ... it was vaguely familiar and yet very original and diverse. It is for the most part played on traditional instruments. There is a tanbur, which is a four-stringed lute-like instrument, on which three of the strings are used as a drone, and the fourth is plucked [the liner notes tell us] to create "microtonal oscillations". This is a complex way of saying, the music creates waves of pleasure in the listener! Other instruments are, the zurna (oboe) and davul (drum), doire (a large tambourine), tar (sringed instrument similar to the tanbur), and the accordion.The Jewish music of Bukharan sounds like a fusion of Central Asian, classical Persian style and Turkish Sufi music. Throughout the CD, there are strong hints of "dikr" styled Sufi worship music. This CD contains,"ghazals", lyrical poetic pieces, initially sung by a male or female soloist, later accompanied by chanting. Some of the types of music on this CD are: folk music, dance music, wedding music (a medley of 5 different songs) and a complex ornamental style using the best and most sophisticated interpretive skills of the musician. The CD begins with a "haqqoni", an unmetered a capella genre, sung in antiphony by two singers, on this CD, both a male and female vocalist. It could also have three or more singers. "Haqq" is an Arabic word, meaning "absolute truth", referring to G-d [the liner notes tell us]. Some of melody types played are "bayat", "chargay", the "qalandari" classical repertoire, and "segah". The music can be very energetic and fast or meditative and reverent. Transitional moments in the music are marked by a shift in tempo, change in rhythm or change in melody. The musicians and singers originate from Transoxiana, Tajikistan, and Bukhara in Uzbekistan. This music will be of great interest to those who want to explore the roots of world music. It will appeal to persons open to new experiences in melody, rhythm, and instrumentation. This CD delves into a unique branch of Jewish music from Central Asia, whose origins are difficult to determine. Whether of Moslem or Jewish extraction, it does not matter ... this music is a prize worth possessing. The musical ensemble, Shashmaqam, is located in Forest Hills, New York. They are a musical treasure *imported* from Central Asia. My highest accolades to Smithsonian Folkways Recordings for recording this hidden musical treasure of Uzbekhistan. Erika Borsos (erikab93)"