مشاهدة جميع الاصدارات : Farajallah Baida فــرج اللـــه بيـــضا

01-10-2006, 13:23
"Mr. Iliyya Bayda, an immediate relative of the company's founders and a Baidaphon recording artist himself, supplied the details of the history of Baidaphon. According to him, the company owed its origins to five ambitious members of the Christian Bayda (Baida) family from the Musaytibah quarter of Beirut. Two of them were Jibran (Mr. Bayda's father) and Farajallah (a singer who later became a Baidaphon recording artist). These two brothers, who were practically illiterate, earned their living first as construction workers in Beirut. The remaining founders included their two fairly well-educated cousins, also brothers, Butrus and Jibran. Encouraged by the rising popularity of phonograph recording and by the talent of Farajallah, the four cousins decided to form their own recording company. Around 1906, they negotiated a deal with a German record manufacturing company, which agreed to record and manufacture discs for them in Berlin. In their negotiations, Butrus and Jibran Baida were assisted substantially by their brother Michel, a physician living in Berlin and the fifth founder.
While still in Berlin the Bayda brothers inaugurated their recording business career by sending for their cousin Farajallah and the Beiruti ‘ud accompanist Qasim al-Durzi to join them and make their first recordings there. A fortunate coincidence was the fact that Dr. Michel was an accomplished Arabic calligrapher, and his handwriting fostered the recording labels used by the young company. Back in Beirut, with records ready to sell, the Baydas opened a small record shop on Martyr Square in downtown Beirut. Soon after, the company began to record local talent, aided by the European engineers who made periodic recording missions to the area. It was probably only a matter of months before the company recorded in Egypt and the rest of the Middle East."
Ali Jihad Racy, Musical change and commercial recording in Egypt, 1904-1932, PhD, University of Illinois, 1977, pp. 97-98.

Farajallah (always pronounced Ferjallah) Bayda's records pertain to 3 categories : the syro-lebanese lore of popular mawwal-type songs (3ataba, mijana, mawwal baghdadi) ; the Aleppo lore of qudud, often egyptianized and turned into taqatiq, a common repertoire of the almees (3awalim) travelling back and forth between Cairo and Bilad al-Sham ; qasa'id, usually pronounced à la Egyptian (guim instead of jim).
This first record might not be Farajallah's best (this will be for the next episodes) but it is an amusing mock-wedding song. Pay attention to the accent in the comical spoken parts, which I hear as different from present day Lebanese accent. Am I wrong, Najib ? Or is is just the Mseitbeh accent ?
Like in many very early Baidaphon records, the two sides are totally different: the first one is the 3awalmi wedding song "el-badr lamma zar", the second an instrumental popular rendering of "marmar zamani"
Baidaphon 71/2785
I suspect (but have no evidence) that two-figure catalogue numbers are the original Berlin session of 1906/07, which would make this recording one of the earliest testimony of Syro-lebanese music.

01-10-2006, 14:48
Dear Fredi,
The style of speech used by the singer is mostly Bairuti with some short statements is Shami accent (Damascus I mean)
I am not sure if the speed of talking was real or just made up by the singer
I think Najib will be able to give us the right judgement

The file is so interesting. I remeber that old people in Lattakia, my home city in Syria, used to sing the Wedding song exactly same way interpreted by Farjallah Bayda, same tempo and same lyrics

01-10-2006, 17:06
I could clearly distinguish the shamy stuff (Eh Mou 3ala 3eyni), but how beiruty or mseitbaoui the Lebanese is I can't judge given that I'm from Tripoli - Mina

وأهل المينا عقلهم عقل سمك

I think we need some contribution from the Beiruti guys Bakkar, 3amr, 3ali Yammout.

Thanks for the file, it definitely introduces a flavour that this Bilad el Sham section is badly missing.

01-10-2006, 19:31
well, the sound isn't exactly helping with identification, but to the best of my judgement, the actors are very much from Beirut, infact, very "mosaitabish", but they sometimes fake a shami accent for comic effect or something. (at the end of the first side, they also fake a heavy beiruti accent, assuming they are from msaitbeh).

notice the the first time he calls for the bakhour, he says "hèté il bakhour", but after the shami bit, the same guy says "hatoo", instead of hèto.

02-10-2006, 20:21
Esma3 mewwal men Ferjallah :

miskin hal el-gharib
mawwal baghdadi, hijaz, traditional vocal popular music

Baidaphon 97, one side
recorded Berlin or Beirut, circa 1906/1907

03-10-2006, 20:11
Thanks a lot for this recording. I can honestly say that this is one of the rare old recordings that I enjoyed, because there isn't much noise in the background.
They fake a bit of a Syrian dialect at the beginning, and at the end of the first section they say "ya habeeb 'albee" in a purely Basta/Ras Beirut (including msaitbeh) style. The recording is funny and elegant at the same time.

03-10-2006, 23:34
@ Jacques :
I'm a little surprised, because it's in my opinion a record in a really bad state, much worse than Egyptian recordings of the same period... So if you can handle this, you can sure handle many other records coming up.
Thanks for the linguistic remarks. And have you heard his mawwal, in the farajallah 2/4 ?

04-10-2006, 11:53
شكرا لك يا فريدريك ,اريد قول شيئين الأول هو أن اللغه بين لبنان وسوريه في تلك السنوات كانت أقرب مما عليه اليوم لأن الاختلاط بين سوريه ولبنان كان كاملا وكانت تستعمل الكثير من الكلمات الشاميه والحلبيه في بيروت وأيضا كلمات بيروتيه في سوريه وهناك الكثير من الأغاني تستعمل فيها هذه الكلمات...أما عن التكلم (باللبنانيه)فقد سمعتك ببرنامج (حكواتي ومغنواتي) تتكلم باللبنانيه وتقريبا بشكل جيد .

04-10-2006, 12:34
Fred Chapeaux bas habibi,

This one century old recording is a wonderful piece of ethno-musicology.

This is 1906 so like they say "Sayf el Saltanah Taweel".

It shows beyond doubt that the Ottoman art of Gazel was dominating the free style singing.

Firstly it mostly hovers on the Gawab exactly the way a Gazel always is.

Secondly notice at 1’12” and 3’58” he uses a Turkish word “meden” which is used in Gazel singing as a kind of a music filling to form the end of a qaflah.

This word also survived with the greek Rebetiko Amanedes (plural of Manes, derived from Aman), and it is used in the same way in these Greek types of Mawwal.

I’ll come back tomorrow with some linking evidence.


04-10-2006, 16:06
I think it is not "meden" but "meded", which means help!, an Arabic word, a common word used in daily Turkish and Turkish Ghazal as well. Like "ya ayni" as Arab singers say in between.

04-10-2006, 16:36
This is why my Turkish friend wasn't able to explain it and he said it was a mere musical filling.

However if we look at Farjallah's mawwal as a form, I think it derives from the Ottoman Gazael, but I could be wrong! I'm just a listener and not a scholar.

04-10-2006, 18:43
From an online Turkish->English dictionary:

help, aid.

__ Allah! Help me, God!

__ beklemek/ummak /dan/ to hope for help (from); to expect (someone, something) to help one.

[Previous - Next]

Given that the last t is pronounced d, we have the infamous meded!

04-10-2006, 20:02
Yes you found it brother. "meded" مدد has exactly the same meaning it has in Arabic. After 1928 revolution, by adoption of latin script the Arabic words ending with "د" is written as "t". Likewise words ending with ﺐ is written as "p" as conforming to Turkish pronounciation. For example name "Najeeb" is written in Turkish as "Necip".

04-10-2006, 20:09
Necip is already my name with the Turkish gang in London :)

04-10-2006, 20:11
Do you also agree with the music similarity with the Gazel?

The hovering on the high notes for example?

05-10-2006, 15:05
Gazel with the word Meded in them posted in the Turkish section:


05-10-2006, 15:38
Do you also agree with the music similarity with the Gazel?

The hovering on the high notes for example?

Believe me I have a very poor music knowledge unfortunately. I am not able to comment on this matter. But as a listener I find both musics are very similar.

06-10-2006, 16:24
Esma3 mawwal baghdadi... Benebtedi !

This might be my favorite record by Farajallah/Ferjallah Baida, found in the late A. Anani's collection. He, of course, had written "3azima giddan" on the corner of the sticker, for his good taste never failed him.
I suppose it's a very early 1906 Baidaphon, a Berlin one ? But the sticker is not even a Baida one, it's black with titles written on the side and figures 25m/26m.

First side is the wonderful mawwal baghdadi "lamma zamani da3ani", sikah, with a metric ostinato played by the 3ud. After completing the piece, Ferjallah launches into two successive short pieces of the qadd/taqtuqa type, which I didn't identify and for which I would need the help of our friends from Bilad al-Sham.
As for the "turkish connection", it is indeed obvious in this piece, as it is in the recordings of Ahmad al-Shaykh and Muhammad al-‘Ashiq : the art of the gazel, as we can hear it in the Hafiz Burhan recordings for instance, impregnated the musical atmosphere of professional musicians in the bilad al-sham much more than it influenced Egyptian singers.

Second side is an obviously Egyptian pre-modern taqtuqa, sikah as well, that Ferjallah strangely mispronounces (3agabuni gAmaalak instead of gImaalak), but that I have not come accross in Egyptian catalogs... Ferjallah beybadda3 fiha, and if the 5:25-5:42 section doesn't send you dancing and crying at the same time, then you have no heart, hashakum. The 3ud accompaniment is very nice and the name of the 3udist seems to be mentioned at the end of the piece, although I didn't catch it, but it doesn't seem to be the name mentioned by A.J. Racy. Ferjallah concludes with the mere maTla3 of Salama Higazi's "salu humrat al-khaddayn", previously uploaded and discussed, proving shaykh Salama's high reputation in the Levant.

فرج الله بيضا : موال بغدادي لما زماني دعاني يليه قد، ثم طقطوقة عجبوني جمالك يختمها بمطلع قصيدة سلوا حمرة الخدين

06-10-2006, 18:36
I agree, it is the best posted so far.

I liked his mawwal a lot. Also his taqtuqah is fantastic.

Here's some greek Hicaz Neva link to the genre that I added today:


09-10-2006, 02:01
مشكور أخي فريد على هذه الدرة واسال هل هناك علاقة بين فرج الله بيضا وإيليا بيضا وأنا عندي تسجيلات كثيرة لهذا الأخير

09-10-2006, 10:08
نعم، هذا مذكور بالانجليزية في المقتطف من رسالة الدكتور علي جهاد راسي الذي استهللت به هذه السلسلة، وقد تكاسلت عن نقله إلى العربية...

فرج الله بيضا هو عم إيليا بيضا، وهذا الأخير ابن أخيه جبران

10-10-2006, 12:28
very similar to Turkish Gazal indeed ya Najib..
very intersting to compare it to the Egyptian styles ...

13-10-2006, 15:16
I have been extremely surprised that the last mawwal and taqtuqa by Farajallah have not been discussed as I feel they deserved it... These are, after all, 100 year old recordings informing on the state of music in Lebanon at the eve of the 20th century. Any musicologist on the plane ?

Baidaphon 10/302
Isbahan (???, that's on the record, what I hear is hijaz) "Firaaq il-Khayy"
Mijana &‘Ataaba "Latam senni b-khaddak"

This is a file for which I am asking to learn. I have it, I share it, please comment on it and teach me. Don't say alf shukr, that's not what I'm here for.

فرج الله بيضا : فراق الخي (اصبهان) / لطم سني بخدك (عتابا) على بيضافون

13-10-2006, 15:39
شكرا أخ فريدريك وللحق فرج الله بيضا فنان جيد لم يتم الحتفال به جيدا فى بلاد الشام بصفته واحد من الرواد الأوائل ممن حافظوا على التراث الشامى ونتمنى من فريدريك ألقاء مزيدمن الضوء عليه ويا حبذا أن رفع صورته الشخصيه كل الشكر للمنتدى العظيم

13-10-2006, 17:00
A few comments:

- Makam is definitely Hicaz for min frak el Khay I don't see any Isfahan.

- With regards to the mawwals, I'm trying to decipher the Mawwals:

First Mawwal

The first one Khay (brother) - 3adem wel Khay (bone and what?) - Ra7 Khay (went, phew)

This is different than the structure of the 3ataba A-A-A - (C ending with aaab)

Because it ends with Seret ana we7day (I became lonely).

Any idea guys about what is it

Second and Third Mawwal

Typical 3ataba (preceded by Mijana lines), but for the life of me I couldn't decipher the endings.

sam7eena (forgive us)
bsam7eena (?)

Went3abna (we got tired)
went3abna (?)
la tdayye3 ta3abna (don't waste our effort)

Turkish Link

More words at 1'42 other than medet. I could hear Canim (djanum, dear).

Fred I didn't see commenting on the link with the Turkish Gazel. Is there any literature on the subject?

I always heard traces of the style in Wadee3 and Sabah' free style singing, but it became more obvious as we travelled further back in time (Farjallah).

13-10-2006, 21:40
Thanks for the rest of the files.

I enjoyed the first and the fourth recording most, maybe because they are closer to the Shami style than the others.
I wish I could speak in technical details but I don't know that. Despite your testimony, I liked the first recording better than the 3rd, I felt it was more engaging.

Thanks again :)

أبو علاء
27-10-2006, 14:20
I'm not acquainted at all with Turkish gazel to further explore that resemblance. But, I felt an apparent linkage with theI Iraqi maqam style, not only in the lyrics, the declamation style, but, most important, in the melodic pattern and intonation. I know the very name of this style is mawwal baghdadi. But I thought that denomination related more to the pattern of lyrics compsotion. Higaz here sounds quite different from standrd Egyptian higaz. It clearly reminds me of certain mawwals by Gubbangi.

أبو علاء
27-10-2006, 14:40
Oh, yes! This is a marvellous piece indeed! And here again, the mawwal seems hundred per cent baghdadi. The melody is so peculiar. Actually, the difference isn't restricted to one of intonation. Beyond that, it looks like the melodic/vocal scale is made of a more refined grading with thinner nuances. I've always had this impression with Iraqi music (not as much in the shami one, though) and I used to attribute it to the proximity to the Iranian music.
Another remark relates to Farjalla's voice that I find suprisingly beautiful. But what strikes me is the apparent predominance of this sort of soprano voice among the sahmi singers of that period (I'm thinking of 'ahmad Esh-sheekh and Muhammad El-'ashiq as well). Is there any explanation to this phenomenon? Would it have to do with certain artistic stereotypes or, maybe, socio-cultural considerations such as the scarcity of active professional female singers for instance?

27-10-2006, 14:55
Yes, his high pitched voice is wonderful. You can add to this list Muhy al-Din Ba‘yun, also very high pitched, although I don't like the khaama of his voice as much Ashiq, al-shaykh and Farajallah. Could this be a consequance of the absence of women in the field of art music in the bilad al-sham ? quite possible, an interesting trail.

30-10-2006, 14:05
i think singing on a high pitch is more a cultural -taste thing as one encounters it very often to as far as Iran ,passing by the iraqis ..etc. Actually i think the egyptian influence took it bit from it away in the arabic countries .In Iran however ,they still sing wonderfully on the high side !:)

31-10-2006, 11:49
Hi Mohsen,

I think it's the Ottoman Gazel influence definitely. It always is on Gawab and high pitched. His use of Turkish words as musical fillings did provide the biggest proof of that link.

09-03-2007, 21:28
Esma3 mawwal baghdadi... Benebtedi !

First side is the wonderful mawwal baghdadi "lamma zamani da3ani", sikah, with a metric ostinato played by the 3ud. After completing the piece, Ferjallah launches into two successive short pieces of the qadd/taqtuqa type, which I didn't identify and for which I would need the help of our friends from Bilad al-Sham.

فرج الله بيضا : موال بغدادي لما زماني دعاني يليه قد، ثم طقطوقة عجبوني جمالك يختمها بمطلع قصيدة سلوا حمرة الخدين

الطقطوقة القصيرة التي تتخلل العتابا و المواويل تدعى "الفــرّوقة" لأنها تفرق- تقسم الغناء إلى مقاطع رزينة يتخللها فترات من المرح و الغناء الراقص دفعاً لملل المستمعين و هذا الآسلوب كثير الشيوع في الغناء التقليدي في المنطقة الساحلية لبلاد الشام يقابلها القدود الحلبية التي تقفل الوصلة الغنائية

10-03-2007, 02:35
هل هناك علاقة بين فرج الله بيضا وإيليا بيضا وأنا عندي تسجيلات كثيرة لهذا الأخير

أرجو تفضّلكم علينا ببعض ٍ مّما لديكم للقبضاي ايليا بيضا ، إن لم أقل كلّه
ولا بأس لو فتحت له صفحة منفردة الى جانب عمّه .
نعم العمومة !
ونحن لك مدينون دوماً


17-03-2007, 12:49
Burhan was rightly complaining of ther lack of interest for the 78rpm period artists in this section, and indeed there are many others than Muhy al-Din Ba‘yun : Ahmad al-Shaykh, Muhammad al-‘Ashiq, Ahmad al-Mir, Abd al-Rahim al-Safh, Farajallah Baida, Ibrahim Ghalayini, Ahmad Tannir, and many others !

Here is another record by Farajallah Baida
Baidaphon 82309 / 310
‘Alayya ya daggagat el-benni
Ya zein yalli ‘ala gatli

علي يا دقاقة البني
يا زين ياللي على قتلي

Any commentary on genres, lyrics is welcome. What is this daqqaqa ? why the "beduin" accent ?

17-03-2007, 15:47
Dear Fred,
"Ya Daggagat al Binni" is of the same theme of "Layya w Layya" and "Skaba Ya Dumu' el E'in". Dagg or Daqq is the tatoo that was so popular among Bedouians and Gypsy people in the Middle East. That explains using Egyptian "G" instead of Middle-Eastern "Qaf".
Second file of "Ya Zein" is just typical Baghadi Mawwal as we call it in Syria.
I do not have time now to figure out the lyrics; I will try it later afetr I finish my housework unless someone else does that before me

17-03-2007, 15:58
That explains using Egyptian "G" instead of Middle-Eastern "Qaf".

You're confusing Egyptian /g/ for ج and Beduin /g/ for ق
But I see the relation between tatoo and Beduin women, indeed.

17-03-2007, 16:19
Bedouian pronouncing of Qaf ق is the same as Egyptian ج
That is what I meant to say

17-03-2007, 17:42
As a first try:

يا دقـــــــــــــاقة البني*** يا ســـالب روحي مني
أنا روحي فدى عيونك*** و انت مش سايلة عني

يا دقـــاقة البسمك*** أنا بحبيبي مشربك
يا رب نروح لبعلبك*** أخدو حبيبي مني

على يا دقاقة الأحمر*** يسلملي شعرك هالأشقر
يا رب تبعتلي العسكر*** أخدو حبيبتي مني

على يا دقاقة البيرة*** يسلملي قوامك يا نظيرة
وعدتني وعد الآمرة*** يجي عالباب يرقصلك؟

و انا روحي فدى عيونك*** ما ترسي؟؟ أنا مجنونك
قوامك وحي للحاجب*** و انت بتسألك عني؟

Any corrections guys? please do

18-03-2007, 11:56
Many thanks for extracting the lyrics ! the voice is not that clear and this is a huge achievement, I think, especially that, unlike Egyptian songs, there are no text books or catalogues with lyrics for Syro-Lebanese recordings...
This makes it really obvious that someone has to start working on the syro-lebanese 78rpm production and produce some academic research equal to what exists in the Egyptian field.

And what is a basmak ???

18-03-2007, 12:35
"Basmak" was my best guess to what he is singing; I am not sure even if this is correct. I could not link it to any current vocabulary. Might need someone older than me, but first we need to confirm it is Basmak.

04-09-2007, 19:55
و هذه لجمع الصفحات المتعددة في موضوع واحد و للفت الانتباه مجددا لهذا المطرب عسى نجد أعمالا أخرى له

04-09-2007, 19:57
لدي الكثير الكثير يا عزيزي، وفعلا علي أن أفكر في رفع بعض التسجيلات في القسم الشامي كذلك
سأرفع عملا لفرج الله في الأسبوع المقبل

04-09-2007, 20:03
لقد فعل الدمج فعله
و نحن على أحر من الجمر بانتظار الجديد لفرج الله
جزيل الشكر سلفاً