Sunday, January 24, 2010

Abo Bakr Salem - Ahtefel Bel Jarh

Love or hate him, Abo Bakr Salem has left his mark on the music of the Gulf. It is largely thanks to him that Yemenite music is still alive and well on the scene. Though the material here is all-new, the Egyptian chorus and orchestra, including Amir Abdel Majid and Tarek Aakef, is still here, and harkens back to the days when Arab singers all traveled to Cairo for the state-of-the-art studios. Abo Bakr is still as soulful as ever with his truly unique style, changing his tone and commenting for dramatic effect. The listener loses themselves in the oud, the ney, and the deep strings that accompany each song. The lyrics are as beautiful as ever too, with songs of pure affection like Moghram Sababa, of loss like Ahtefel Bel Jarh, or of peace like Han Wagt El Lega, which urges Arab nations to forget previous wrongs and come together, using estranged lovers as a metaphor. A great composer, lyricist, and singer, Abo Bakr Salem is unmatched, even when scores of singers now adhere to his school of music.

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1. Ahtefel Bel Jarh
2. Moghram Sababa
3. Samir El Ein
4. Ghessin El Ban
5. Ya Badr
6. Gesher Men El Mouz
7. Han Wagt El Lega

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