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Mahmoud Turkmani ZÂKIRA ENJ-9475 2 CD
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FormatAudio CD
Ordering NumberENJ-9475 2
labelenja Matthias Winkelmann
Release date01.01.2001

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      Description hide

      Born in Halba (Lebanon) in 1964, Mahmoud Turkmani studied music (classical guitar, composition) in Moscow before moving to Switzerland where he worked as a music teacher at first. After a long break he started to compose again in the mid-90s and soon found new interest in the oud, the Arab lute, and its (unexplored) technical possibilities. As a composer and interpreter Turkmani recently travelled to several European and Arab countries. He performed with recorder player Conrad Steinmann and his ensemble diferencias, with the Berne Symphonic Orchestra, with violinist Patricia Kopatchinskaya and pianist Ivan Sokolov, the Erato string quartet, double bass player Barry Guy and percussionist Keyvan Chemirani.

      The idea for his new album "Zâkira" was to compose an interpretation of the classical Arab tradition exploring new ways in Arabic art music. For this purpose, Turkmani went to Cairo to record with professional Egyptian musicians playing Arab instruments -- instead of writing for a western ensemble. Although Turkmani´s music first sounded unusual to the musicians involved, they soon recognized its quality, understood the composer´s intention and played with thrilling power and emotionality.

      The basis for Turkmani´s compositions is the muwashah, a form of love poetry in a musical setting which is very popular in classical Arabic music. In the traditional muwashah the singing voice is accompanied by Arab instruments like the oud, the qanûn (a boxed zither), the stringed kamantche, the ney flute and diverse drums (riqq, mazhar, darabukka). Turkmani has slightly extended the instrumentation using a second oud, cello and double bass. In the rhythmic and melodic field he relies on the Arab tradition. Says the composer: "You hear something you have always heard, but now you hear it as if it was for the first time. I try to make good use of the infinite liberties of homophony and heterophony. While keeping the melody (the main line) in its original form, I add a second, third, fourth line and so on. These new lines are like the shades of the main line." The result is something that never existed before: Arab traditions transformed into a totally new musical language. Turkmani has discovered a world of sounds previously hidden behind the strength of a traditional heritage.

      Tracklist hide

      CD 1
      • 1.Mouwashah Arjiî Ya Alfa Layla 11:25
      • 2.Mouwashah Aytatouhou Ma Saâla 07:25
      • 3.Mouwashah Zananil Mahboub 03:37
      • 4.Mouwashah Imlalil Aqdaha 07:28
      • 5.Mouwashah Nouzhatoul Arwah 06:38
      • 6.Taqassoum 02:15
      • 7.Bulerias 05:27