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Citrus
09-01-2009, 07:36 PM
Ever since that jewish music thread, I've been tinkering around with religious music. Depending on which songs we're talking about both the Jewish and Christian songs turn out great, but I've yet to find an Islamic songs I can really enjoy (despite having lived with an Omanni Muslim roommate for a whole year!) it all tends to be this heavy chant stuff I can't get behind, does anybody know any Islamic music that's really pretty? I wanted to make a medley of beautiful music from all 3 religions to kind of make a statement of some sort.

note: Since religion is part of this thread be careful about what you say, I don't want it shut down because somebody has to say something ignorant

buddhuu
09-01-2009, 11:43 PM
Islam and music have a complicated relationship. Some of my Muslim friends pretty much have nothing to do with music because they say that some authorities claim it is a harmful influence. As far as I can gather, there doesn't seem to be any contemporary consensus proscribing music, but some schools of thought (which friends describe as "old fashioned") still frown on it. There is supposedly a specific passage in the Quran wherein The Prophet speaks against musical instruments.

That said, I've been to wedding celebrations attended by Muslim clerics who clearly had no objection whatsoever to music, and who sang very well!

I think this ambiguity probably partly explains the reason why "Islamic" music may not be as easily found, or even defined, as, for example, Jewish music (love me some klezmer!) - but there is some beautiful stuff out there. I really love some of the Sufi Qawwali devotional music. There was a Panjabi fella called Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B9lt-JI86k4), who died a few years ago, who was an outstanding exponent. A friend lent me some recordings some years back, and once I got used to it I found it to be real heartfelt stuff - even to me, who didn't really understand what was going on! But that may be too much like the chanting you don't want.

Do we have any Muslim UUers who might be able to help?

I applaud your concern about people misusing the thread, but I think most of our family here are better than that.

Good luck with your search. :shaka:

ricdoug
09-02-2009, 12:00 AM
There are 4 Afghani brothers at my work. They have several instruments that resemble an ukulele. Ric

http://www.afghanistan.org/music.asp

Blrfl
09-02-2009, 02:18 AM
On this instrument, music from that part of the world is going to be difficult.

Traditional Arabic music usually features notes between those in the western chromatic scale that would, at least in theory, be quarter tones. (In other words, they might have something that's a "flat A♭," which is flatter than an A♭ but sharper than a G.) Not all 24 possible quarter tones are used, the scale is rarely evenly tempered, and all of the above can vary regionally.

A lot of it is played on stringed, fretless instruments, notably the oud (http://www.oud.eclipse.co.uk). That site has some good discussion of the theory and regional variations.

--Mark

SamWise
09-02-2009, 03:28 AM
I love Qawalli, which is sufi ecstatic devotional music. It's hypnotic, and rises from a very slow start to a huge crescendo. It's typically performed by about 6 singers, a couple of harmoniums, and tabla, so even I haven't been brave enough to tackle any on ukulele!

Check some out here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fK33RS_4-1A
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-tndkUpivGY
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B9lt-JI86k4

I Ukulista
09-02-2009, 03:37 AM
Some Islamic countries have their own special sound. It's not to do with Islam but more to do with the secular culture in that particular country. Turkey has some really interesting music it is Turkish and not middle eastern. Bosnia has some good folk songs and some of them have a Turkish influence. In the middle east Syria and Lebanon have produced lots of folk music for radio. Some of the songs sung by Firouz from the Lebanon would be interesting to play. Given that large parts of West Africa are Islamic and that a lot of music comes out of Senegal and Mali you might want to explore African music.

buddhuu
09-02-2009, 03:54 AM
[...]you might want to explore African music.

Soukous rocks! :music:

GreyPoupon
09-02-2009, 04:01 AM
Ever since that jewish music thread, I've been tinkering around with religious music. Depending on which songs we're talking about both the Jewish and Christian songs turn out great, but I've yet to find an Islamic songs I can really enjoy (despite having lived with an Omanni Muslim roommate for a whole year!) it all tends to be this heavy chant stuff I can't get behind, does anybody know any Islamic music that's really pretty? I wanted to make a medley of beautiful music from all 3 religions to kind of make a statement of some sort.

note: Since religion is part of this thread be careful about what you say, I don't want it shut down because somebody has to say something ignorant


There is a lot of Islamic music that is gorgeous. Especially, as already noted, Qawalli music. If you ever get a chance to go to a Qawalli concert GO, it's truly simply amazing stuff. In my next life time I hope to be reborn a sufi Qawalli singer.

Also try going to youtube and do a search on 'Oud' and 'Ney.' You'll find some amazing solo performances on these instruments. These are not necessarily 'Islamic' instruments or Muslim music but these are the instruments that come from the Middle East.

But in regards to trying to capture the sound of qawalli on a ukulele...yeesh, good luck! I wouldn't have the faintest idea of how to begin.

In regards to your project perhaps an approaoch would be to take eastern and western scales and combine them together in interesting ways. For the lyrics you could try combining Latin, Hebrew and Arabic prayers. That might be interesting. (In the original Latin, Hebrew and Arabic of course! Which would actually be easier than one might suspect.)

I also need to note that most 'Jewish' music is really western music because it is being played on western instruments. Most of it is only Jewish in the sense that its lyrics are Jewish oriented. I think what makes a genre of music really unique is its instruments. Middle Eastern music is unique because it uses the oud, ney, dumbek and so on. Japanese music uses the shakuhahci, koto, shamisen. European music the piano, violin... you get the idea. So trying to capture another culture's music on your own instrument is hard - the only way in is really through learning the scales that evolved around the other culture's instruments.

hoosierhiver
09-02-2009, 04:50 AM
The Hindus have some cool music as well.

SamWise
09-02-2009, 04:56 AM
Oh! Let me add my Me Too to the recommendation for Ney music. Got into that in Iran, loved it.

Some cool Ney music

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ba53hl1m2DE

buddhuu
09-02-2009, 06:35 AM
[...] These are not necessarily 'Islamic' instruments or Muslim music but these are the instruments that come from the Middle East.[...]

Yes, that's the thing. It's easy enough to find music from Islamic countries, but that isn't necessarily Islamic music per se, And the Islamic-focused music I know, like Qawwali, is possibly what the OP referred to when he mentioned the chants he can't get into.


The Hindus have some cool music as well.

Absolutely.

From my reading of the OP, it seems that the medley project is intended to feature contributions from the traditions of the 3 big Abrahamic monotheist religions - Christianity, Islam and Judaism. I think that's a great idea - really interesting. There is indeed some brilliant Hindu music, but it doesn't quite meet spec for the current job. Maybe raagas and stuff can feature in a sequel medley! :D

Citrus, are you going to do a recording or a video or something? I'd be interested to hear what you come up with, and if you posted something on YT I'd be interested to see how the idea is received.

What do you plan to use for the Christian aspect? The choices there seem vast - hymns, gospel music, Handel, Bach...

haolejohn
09-02-2009, 11:38 AM
Citrus since you are interested in all three religions you should look into the Bahaist religion. I don't think I spelled that correctly but it is a combination of all three of these religions and they do play music.

On a different note whenever I think of Muslim music I think of the band in Return of the Jedi. I'm not sure why but I do.

Citrus
09-02-2009, 02:27 PM
I wanted to pick out of a couple of the most famous songs from each of the religions so that some of the people will be able to recognize it. That being said the two I've been milling around with are Amazing Grace and Hatikvah.

haolejohn: I think tatooine might just look too much like somewhere in the middle east, but there is a nice tab for that song on ukulelehunt

haolejohn
09-02-2009, 02:42 PM
I wanted to pick out of a couple of the most famous songs from each of the religions so that some of the people will be able to recognize it. That being said the two I've been milling around with are Amazing Grace and Hatikvah.

haolejohn: I think tatooine might just look too much like somewhere in the middle east, but there is a nice tab for that song on ukulelehunt

What is the connection between the songs?

Brewerpaul
09-02-2009, 04:24 PM
I gotta tell you, threads like this warm the cockles of my heart.
With all the troubles in the world, and much of that based on religious differences, something as simple as music can really bring people of different backgrounds together so effectively.
I've always said that the way to world peace would be to have a huge picnic where people could eat each others' foods and listen to and dance to each other's music. From my mouth to God's ear...

buddhuu
09-03-2009, 12:06 AM
I gotta tell you, threads like this warm the cockles of my heart.
With all the troubles in the world, and much of that based on religious differences, something as simple as music can really bring people of different backgrounds together so effectively.
I've always said that the way to world peace would be to have a huge picnic where people could eat each others' foods and listen to and dance to each other's music. From my mouth to God's ear...

Well said, mate.

Paul, as you probably know from the... "sensitive" forum at C&F, I am not a religious believer. Nevertheless, any project that inclusively embraces the ways different people see the world has my respect.

Christian, Muslim, Jew, Hindu, atheist, black, white, Asian, gay, straight, fat, thin, whatever - We're all family, so lets jam! :music:

Citrus: cool project, cool thread. :shaka:

built
09-03-2009, 03:42 AM
some of the yusuf islam aka cat stevens stuff are pretty cool...