“One of the great young divas of the global music scene” (The
- Mor Karbasi is a leading singer in the Sephardic tradition, the ancient lost culture of the Jewish communities of the golden age of Al-Andalus in 10th century southern Spain.
She sings in Ladino, a beautiful language that has almost died out, as well as Hebrew, Spanish, Berber and Moroccan Arabic.
The songs explore her Sephardic and Moroccan identity and pay tribute to her mother’s influence, with Mor providing musical settings for Shoshana’s words on two songs.
This album, 5th album by Mor Karbasi, introduces a rainbow of Karbasi’s
identities and the remarkable story of her family.
From Hebrew songs composed, arranged, sung and sometimes
written by Mor herself to Ladino Sephardic songs and Berber
songs from the Atlas mountains, with the participation of some of
the finest musicians today!
(Avishai Cohen-trumpet, Yossi Fine-Bass and Electric guitar on
“Atay”, Moshe Elmakias -piano, Itamar Doari-Percussion on
“Porque (Because), Joe Taylor and many more…
And… there is even a Yemenite song in the album!
Born to a family of Moroccan, Sephardic and Persian roots, it comes as
a surprise as to why Mor would choose to open the album with a
Yemenite song !
Saat Arahman is a traditional yemenite wedding song that deals with the
subject of “The child bride”, something so common in many cultures
around the world until this very day!
The text is no less that a moving dialogue between the child and her
father and mother, asking them with all her little might to not give her
away, to protect her, and failing that, to at least build her new home next
to her childhood home.
The idea for the musical arrangement has come to Mor after listening to
a Spanish Andalousian “Saeta”. something very dramatic that is played
and sung during “semana santa” parades in spain, a parade in honour of
the statues of Jesus and his mother Maria, describing scenes from the
crucifixion on what precedes it.
“I wanted to make the song feel like a funeral parade rather than a
wedding parade to emphasise the paradox between the appeared
celebration and the personal feeling of the child bride. this subject has
been occupying my mind for some time now.
My Moroccan grandmother was also married off too young. Her mother
at 9 years old!”
Not only a Yemenite song on the album, but also quite a few Moroccan
Jewish liturgic prayers, inspired by her late Moroccan grandfather
“shalom asaraf”, who used to sing these hymns all the time.
Such is the wonderful track “Bibilu” (Scarcely we left Egypt, with nothing
but the unleavened bread, Now we are free!), that is usually sung by
Moroccan Jews in Passover. The Jewish holiday that celebrates
And “Shirat Hayam” -A magical epic track that talks about the miracle
done to the Israelites and the song they sang once crossing the sea!
Sephardic Ladino songs too arranged in a beautiful way, (Zambra Judia,
Triste esta el Rey David)
Original compositions in Hebrew by Mor herself, sometimes also played
and arranged by her with personal lyrics and stories. a point of view
never yet heard on Mor’s records,
and last but not least, a Berber song from the Atlas mountains about the
happy and significant ceremony of making tea!