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مشاهدة جميع الاصدارات : هديّة العيد : الأوّله في الغرام من حديقة الأزبكيّة سنة 1947



أبو علاء
01-11-2005, 23:18
لقد اعتقدنا دهرا أنّه لا يوجد لهذا اللّحن الخالد سوى تسجيل يتيم هو المتداول في الأسواق والإذاعات إلى أن تكرّم أخونا محمود الشّامي ورفع مقطعا منه في منتدى زرياب منذ أشهر ؛ وها نحن نرفع لكم التّسجيل كاملا بما فيه تقسيم العود للقصبجي الّتي استهلّت بها الأغنية ؛ فأرجو أن تستمتعوا بهذا التّسجيل وكلّ عام وأنتم بخير والمنتدى بخير والفنّ العربيّ الأصيل بخير تملأ أنغامه الدّنيا بفضلكم وبفضل حَفَظَته الكرام.



El-'awwila fi-l-gharam composed by Zakariya 'ahmad and interpreted by 'um kalthum in a rare recording from a live concert in El-'azbakiya gardens in 1947

luay
02-11-2005, 04:19
Kul A'am Wata B-Kheir, Abu A'laa. This one-of-a-kind masterpiece is a treasure to start with it every new begenning, particularly when it's such a rare recording.
I still feel bad that we will never hear another recording of Holm, which according to Mahmoud, was sung live only once by Om Kulthoum.

Luay

أبو علاء
02-11-2005, 11:59
You're right Luay. It's a pity and almost incredible 'um kalthum left a single live recording of Hulm and twenty to thirty different live recordings of Ya dhalimni, with all due respect to Sunbati and his tube. But, is it not a greater pity a recording this one has been realeased twelve years ago and it yet hasn't stirred any reaction or rather any interest aprt from yours who already knew it?! It was downloaded only once. This is incredible! I know we have only fifty members (and a growing number of visiting guests), yet I can hardly believe it...
To come back to the recording, it is so eloquently instructive. In this regard, I have at least two important obsevations. First, it is remarkable how outstanding 'um kalthum's performance was in the first twenty minutes of the recording. In listening to that part, I had the clear impression that it was a song I never heard before, whereas for the second half of the song, the commercialized recording clearly outperformed this one. At a certain point, I wondered whether it wouldn't be feasible to make a combination of both recordings to produce a third one which would combine the merits of the two of them! One can wonder here to which extent this phenomenon is attributable to the exceptional character of this composition of Zakariya. It would be as though 'um kalthum, who had a contentious with the composer precisely for her excessive improvisation in interpreting this one (at least, this was the official reason), was incapable of making such an even improvisation effort from the beginning to the end. Yet, we have a few examples which defeat such hypothesis. I'm thinking in particular of a certain performance of 'ahli-l-hawa ya lil. In fact, here comes a fundamental problem in the work of Art and literature which has always puzzled me. This is the fact that the quality of such work is in its very essence uneven and unsteady including in the most gifted and talented representatives of such disciplines. This applies to singers, composers, musicians, actors, authors....etc Such unsteadiness and unevenness are inherent to the human nature itself. My seoncd remark relates to originals and copies. To the genius and the poor imitator. I would swear none of us before the discovery of this recording would have imagined an interpretation of this song different from the one in the commercialized recording (a meaningful one, I mean). One singer, talented enough, (the Tunisian Sofia Sadiq) produced a recording of El-'awwila in which she almost succeded in reproducing literally 'um kalthum's performance in the known commercial recording. But she didn't bring in the smallest single touch of her own. Only, 'um kalthum was capable of singing it differently and yet as beautifully.

luay
02-11-2005, 16:10
Abu A'laa,
I agree with you regarding people's reaction to this recording. To me, a few of Om Kulthoum's songs epitomize who she was and why she was (still is) Sayyedat Al Ghenaa Al A'rabi. And the first song to jump to mind in this short list of songs is El Awwela. Om Kulthmoum was simply phenomenal and sensational. And I'm not just talking about the improvisations; just listen to the flexibility of her voice, the tremblings she did... she basically could do anything she wanted to do with her voice.
I have listened a few times to Sofia Sadeq's interpretations of this song. She did a darn good job, but she definitely couldn't do many of those "tremblings", other than one can't get the same feeling listening to her simply since she's just trying to copy Om Kulthoum as closely as possible, as you said.

As for Holm, it's not that Om Kulthoum didn't like the song and/or preferred Ya Dhalimni. What I understood from Mahmoud is that the problems between Zakariya and OK started immediately after the first live recording of the song, and she had to stop singing his compositions (although I think she sang Al-Ahat again in the early 50's, which was the reason for them to go to court).

As to why this recording hasn't stirred the reaction that you and I would have naturally expected (since we ourselves went "crazy" knowing that it existed) is simply and sadly (with all due respect to everyone) that people forgot these masterpieces and associate Om Kulthoum only with her latest songs, such as Ba'eed A'nnak, Enta Omri, etc.
I recally the arugment you and I had with a participant on the zeryab forum a long time ago as to why we prefered the works of Qassabji, Sunbati, and Zakariya for Om Kulthoum over those of Wahab, Baligh, and Mougi. And she got so defensive (of course).
If I'm not mistaken, I gave her as an example this very song: El Awwela. Many singers have sung Enta Omri and other songs with great performances (e.g., Wadee3 Essafi). However, no one can get close to Om Kulthoum in the "hard" songs: El Awwela, Gholobt Asaleh, Raqq El Habib. And now with the discovery of Ya Albi Bokra Essafar, I must admit: I've never heard such a complicated song in my life. I was listening to it again last night, and I had hard time following the complexities of the music. Which reminded me of your discussion of why Om Kulthoum stopped singing of Qassabji's compositions very early.

Anyway, the goal of the forum is to spread the great music and for that you, Hatim, and Najib get all the credit. As for people's tastes, these probably can't be changed easily. I hope people will enjoy this song and this recording as much as I did, still do, and will always do.

Finally: I agree with your comment the second half of the commercialized version of this song was a better performance. The part that "kills" me from the commercialized version is when she's about to finish the song, the way she sings the word "Mnein" in the part of "Wettanya Fel Emtethal Wessabre Amarooni Wageeboh Mnein" (and also the way she utters "Wageeboh", and particularly the "h" at the end). The audience applauds immediately after she says it for the first time (again, I'm talking about the time she sings this part at the end of the song, and not the beginning). But once again, She's Om Kulthoum, and they are Bayram and Zakariyya, so I think enough said.

Best regards,
Luay

Hattouma
04-11-2005, 21:49
No haste ...these masterpieces take quite some time to digest ..especially to people who are not familiar with this side of oum kolthoum (and music of the era in general ) , or who are new to it ..like myself...

Luay ,Qalby Bukra elsafar is indeed complicated ...will save talking about it later to its thread :)

luay
14-03-2006, 18:01
Well, Hatim, still no reaction to the song. Still unbelievable, and still, Abu A'laa's surprise is valid, and I'm shocked too!!!!
To use Mahmoud's words, I would have killed to get this recording :-) (of course, I wouldn't kill for any reason!)
Where are the Tarab listeners? This recording takes the backseat for other songs....
shocking, to say the least.

Luay

AmbroseBierce
14-03-2006, 20:39
Thanks luay, for having posted on this thread - so it came up the line and finally caught my attention. This is indeed wonderful music. I used to listen to many of the Sono Cairo CD-editions of Umm Kalthoums songs and though there are many good and a couple of very good pieces also, sometimes I was not so sure why this singer was that, how to say, venerated? With this piece and a couple more I found in this forum I do understand that. It's really fantastic music - even without understanding the words.

This brings me to a question: Is there such a thing as an Umm Kalthoum archive? I guess if you (I don't really mean someone around here personally) approach the right people, maybe Arabian sponsors (there are some rich people, even some among them interested in Arab culture in the Gulf States - for example a friend of mine works for a guy who just donated something like if I remember correctly seven million pound to Cambridge? Oxford? university to set up or enlarge a museum of Arab art), maybe UNESCO, maybe both, it would be possible to restore this kind of recordings, so as to have a better sound quality, and maybe even publish something close to a "complete works" sort of thing. Maybe that is a naive thought? I don't know, but it would be worthwhile, don't you think so?

Najib
14-03-2006, 20:42
The whole gramophone archive is now owned by EMI and stored in Hayes (few minutes drive from where I live).

There are five archive Umm Kulthum CDs (called la Diva). They come straight from this archive. Just imagine all the wonderful Dawrs and Taqatiq of Saleh Abdel Hay brought back to life straight from the 78 tours archive.

Yes we need to setup a project. I will contact EMI just to ask what is their procedure for releasing some of the archive that they've got.

Cheers
Najib

luay
14-03-2006, 21:25
Hi Paul,
Those guys you mention, with millions of dollars to spare, would probably donate the money to a dancer in a nightclub in Las Vegas before they donate it to a project on reviving the music of Om Kulthoum and others. Also, Egypt takes a large part of the blame!! Remember: they demolished OK's villa immediately upon her death, and now they went and rented some place to have a museum for her. The only great documentary about Om Kulthoum today is based on the only flawless book by Virginia Danielson, who's American and who wrote her PhD dissertation on Om Kulthoum at the University of Chicago. I've read about 15 Arabic books on Om Kulthoum; they are mostly stories that the authors invent, with the silliest mistakes about the correct lyricists/composers/etc.
Finally, look at the tapes and CDs that the Arab sellers distribute; the tapes hardly have the names of lyricists/composers (since the singer is the most important part of the song in our culture!), and the CDs have tons of mistakes on them. Which ones have correct information? Ones from the UK, the US, and non-Arab countries!
I'd love to have this forum and others up and running so that we finally enjoy great music and reliable information... I've lost hope a long time ago in the "authorities" you think we can appeal to!

Best regards,
Luay

luay
14-03-2006, 21:28
BTW Just to add one bit of information. I'm Palestinian, but with an Israeli passport. The Israeli radio broadcast more interesting recordings of Om Kulthoum's songs than many radio stations from Arab countries.
The point I'm trying to make is that we are very bad at guarding our great musical heritage. The only things preserved in the Arab culture are related to religion; otherwise, it's considered useless, unfortunately.

Luay

أبو علاء
14-03-2006, 21:58
I can only agree with what Najib and Luay wrote here. Paul, Najib will tell that, not only your ideas are not naive at all in our view, but you just spelled out one of our dearest dreams. I wrote "dreams" and not "projects" on purpose because we are still far from having the minimum pre-requisites for such a project. The archives do exist although, to a great extent, in a bad shape - firstm because they are divided among various sources and, in many cases (except from the Gramophone archive mentioned by Najib) not at all conserved under professional/scientific conditions. The most interesting piecs, which are not well known let alone commercialized, are in the hands of individuals with whom it's not at all easy to deal so as to have those pieces "unearhted", processed, authentified, documented and disseminated. All this requires a lot of knowledge, dedication, time and, most of all, money and, here, I agree with what Luay said. Of course, there are still institutional sources as you put it rightly, but we need acquire adequate legitimcay to be in a position to address ourselves to them.

AmbroseBierce
14-03-2006, 23:03
Yeah, of course, legitimacy, I mean legitimacy which is proveable to a bureaucrat is needed. That's why I was not really thinking of you all as individuals, but maybe such issues should be addressed from or through a university, some institute of musicology, history of music or the like or, I think even better still, international bodies like UNESCO. There of course nothing works wiithout support of the relevant governments, in this case the Egyptian. And there I guess tons of obstacles come into sight. But I mean, this is a matter of World Heritage. As I wrote elsewhere, the musical system of Shashmaqam of Usbekistan has been accepted into the UNESCO world heritage program as "non-material world heritage", a fairly new category. With that comes international money to keep the study and practice of shashmaqam alive, it is taught at official institutions, etc. Of course it needed the initiative of the Usbek government. But, I mean, we are not talking about any obscure personality, we are talking about I think the most well known person in modern Egyptian (probably before Gamal Abdel Nasser), maybe even Arab history. So I can't really believe that it should be impossible to find potent sponsors for such an undertaking if a good and well thought-of start has been made. What about the much-talked-of Library of Alexandria? Ah, I'm just dreaming.

Najib
15-03-2006, 13:23
About religion.

Not even that is preserved.

I know that there is a CD issued with Sheikh Taha el Fashny voice, because it's mentioned in a recent book.

Hakem tried hard to find it in Cairo and he failed :-(

أبو علاء
15-03-2006, 14:30
Unfortunately, Taha Al-fashni stuff is hardly considered as being religious, otherwise, we would have had more chance with such kind of recordings. By the way, there is now talk about another video recording with Muhammad 'imran in the Quran forum, but they are reluctant about its postiing as he's accompanied by musicians! I'll follow up the matter.

3amr
15-03-2006, 14:56
About religion.

Not even that is preserved.

I most definitely agree.

To get back to umm kulthum (I'm not going to comment on the song posted here because I haven't had a chance to listen to it yet).

I think it would be very difficult to characterize what sets umm kulthum apart, but a good example would be sheikh zakariyya's Ana Fintizarak. A simple comparison between the sheikh's singing and umm kulthum's singing would highlight the particularities of umm kulthum's style.

What I mean to say is, sheikh zakarayyias interpretation is perhaps the most elegant singing I've heard, his style is intoxicating, and it's enough to say that he's perhaps the only deep bass I've heard in arabic singing so far, that can utilize his voice to effect, without a single note off, even low E's are dead on pitch (he sings whole phrases down there).

Then again, looking at Umm Kulthum's singing, the immediate word that comes to mind is energy, sheer energy. I mean, listening to umm Kulthum's interpretation is like biting down on a high voltage cable. I still can't understand how anybody could sustain that sort of singing for so long.

At the end of the day, it's a personal choice, depending on each persons mood, whether to go for the relaxing elegance of sheikh zakariyya, or an emotional rollercoaster with the Lady.

Amr

Najib
15-03-2006, 15:17
I've posted the salon video on Zeryab, and Ahmad said that he's got the video of the Abdo Dagher's house.

There are still parts that I haven't posted, but I will:

- Very bad recording of him singing with an Organ! (I've posted the sound clip on Zeryab)

- The same salon session, but they are listening to Saleh Abdel Hay's Habibi Houa and then to Bilidi!! (now that's rare and interesting isn't it?)

luay
15-03-2006, 16:12
I don't understand why some participants on some forums don't hesitate to mention that reciting the Quran is what taught Om Kulthoum and most other singers the "true way of singing", but when it comes to posting some recitations, it becomes offensive and they ban it (and ban those who post them). Isn't Om Kulthoum's recitation of part of a Sura already commercial? Aren't there tons of tapes/CDs of Quran recitation available in the market by various Sheikhs? I'm probably missing a point here...
Why can't we ever separate the religious/political sensitivities/views from a pure listening to great voices and wonderful performances, whether they're of religious chants/recitations or crazy love themes :-)


To Amr: I don't know if we can consider Sheikh Zakariyya truly a singer. What you mentioned in comparing him to Om Kulthoum, in interpreting Ana Fe-ntizarak for example, has a lot to do with the two's vocal capabilities. I'm sure if Zakriyya could do what Om Kulthoum did in the part of Tewa'edny, he would have done it, but his vocal capabilities are very limited. Zakariya once said that the composer always delivers the song much better than the singer, except in the case of Om Kulthoum. And there are no better examples to give in this context than the compositions of Zakariyya himself, since Om Kulthoum seemed to be in the best mood in these songs. Think about Holm, El Ahat, etc. I doubt Zakariyya could deliver the same performance (I think the only two songs we haven't heard from Zakariyya himself are Holm and El Awwela; probably there's a reason for that :-)

Best regards,
Luay

3amr
15-03-2006, 16:38
I agree for the most part that sheikh zakariyya is vocally not in the same league as umm kulthum, but in terms of interpretive insight, he can compete with anybody in my opinion. Besides, there are many singers that sang incredibly beautifully and provided true tarab, without the benefit of a voice as magnificient as the lady. Saleh Abdel Hayy comes to mind at this point, I mean, not exactly an equal to umm kulthum vocally is he? but still, a pleasure to listen to. Same with zakariyya I think.

Amr

Najib
15-03-2006, 16:45
I think Zakaira's Ahlel Hawa is definitely better than Umm's

Also I'd kill to listen to him singing Hulm.

My angle here is Tarab. Tarab doesn't have to be delivered with a beautiful voice. It's the mastership and performance that matters.

Cheers
Najib

luay
15-03-2006, 16:57
So, we have a big disagreement here, Najib :-)
I don't think Zakariyya ever got close to Om Kulthoum's "tarab", and Ahl El Hawa is one song that I'd actually use to counter your claim :-) of all Zakariyya's compositions, for Ahl El Hawa we have the largest number of interpretations by Om Kulthoum (we probably have 4 or 5 different performances)... I didn't hear Zakariyya getting close to what OK did, and I'm not talking about whose voice is more beautiful or more powerful; I'm talking about the "tarab interpretation" of the song. But again, each of us has his own taste and probably we hear things differently ;-)

To Amr: I think Saleh Abd El Hayy is considered one of the best singers, whereas Zakriya is hardly considered a singer (he's a giant of giants when it comes to composition, but not singing).

Anyway, again, each is entitled to his or her own opinion, and the greatness of music is that the same piece can be understoond and appreciated in so many different ways by different people.

Best regards to both of you.
Luay

Najib
15-03-2006, 17:10
we're going to have to disagree on this one.

The way Zakaria plays with the rhythm in Ahlel Hawa is unmatcheable not even by Umm Kulthum's herself!

I'll see what Mohsen makes of this :-)

luay
15-03-2006, 17:17
Well, I hope Abu A'laa supports my view, or at least be neutral, but not support yours :-)

Luay

luay
15-03-2006, 17:18
BTW I'm very happy that this thread has finally stirred some discussion..

Luay

AmbroseBierce
15-03-2006, 20:13
Very interesting discussion here. I myself am in no way able to add to this, having too little knowledge of the matter. But I'd be happy if you could direct me to some recommendable examples of Zakariyya's singing.

Najib
15-03-2006, 23:08
How about we start with Ana Fintizarak

http://www.zamanalwasl.net/forums/showthread.php?p=179#post179

أبو علاء
16-03-2006, 07:18
And here's another one: Al-'ahat, also composed for 'um kalthum: http://www.zamanalwasl.net/forums/showthread.php?t=125&highlight=%C7%E1%C3%E5%C7%CA
Dear friends, this is this kind of debate I liked most since my early days in Zeryab and I think this is what brought about our friendship and all what ensued, including the creation of this very forum.
I think I'm not going to join any of the two parties or, let me say I agree with both of you. In my view, Zakariya's capabilities both vocal and musical are definitely not limited, neither do they shy off when compared to 'um kalthum. But can we really compare the two voices or even their respective performances even when talking of the same composition? I wouldn't do it and I'll tell you why. But, first of all, let us not forget that the recordings of Zakariya to which you are referring in this debate were made in the late fourties or the fifties, that is in the late years of Zakariya who was much older than 'um kalthum. But, byeond this, there's another simple fact that you have overlooked. We are here comparing a female singer with a male one and this, for me, at least as far as Arab music is concerned, is simply not relevant. The scale is not the same (3amr's remark concerning Zakariy's bass is valid to a great extent although he forgot about Muhammad 'imran, but can we oppose such a capability to 'um kalthum's), but not only that, the texture is not the same and the senitivity is not the same. I do like both performances of 'ana fi-ntidharak , 'ahli-l-hawa and El-'amal, but I wouldn't compare them to each other with the intent of saying who's the best. I would even add that Zakariya would have been at his disadvantage anyway as he composed those pieces for 'um kalthum, not for himself. Indeed, I do believe, with a great composer such as Zakariya, Sunbati or Qasabji (it's not the case with 'abdi-l-wahab at least because he never really cared for composing for someone else than himself), it makes a difference when you compose for a male singer including oneself and when the compsition is meant for a female and not any female, but specifically 'um kalthum. I have to leave it here and rush to my excurison.

Najib
16-03-2006, 12:28
I agree a lot with what you said Mohsen.

I too am not coming from the angle of comparing voices. It's woman vs man, it's different ranges ...

But I think I get a lot of Tarab from Zakaria, and especially in the case of Ahlel Hawa. Can someone post it by Zakaria? If not I'll find it and post it.

It's the way he delays himsel playing on the Dum of the Wuhda. Not that Umm Kulthum can't do that. But there is this Quranic quality in Zakaria that is so unique.

So I am talking about Tarab rather than beauty of voice.

luay
16-03-2006, 15:24
Najib,
Don't keep trying; Abu A'laa is not going to agree with you on this one :-)

It's an interesting discussion indeed, and despite the friendly disagreements and my clear bias to Om Kulthoum:-), I'm learning a lot from all of you. It's not humility when I say that, technically, I know nothing about music. I can't tell the maqam of the song, the rhythm, etc. I can tell sometimes when there's a switch in maqam (like in Gaddedte Hobbak Leh, the last part of "Yallee Hawak Fel Fouad"; I'm sure it's a maqam different from the previous parts, but I have no idea what the maqam was and what it became!).

Going back to the discussion and Tarab, and now that we have two samples (Ana Fe-ntizarak and El Ahat), how about we try to be more concrete in our comparison and point to the actual places where *supposedly* Zakariyya outperformed Om Kulthoum in tarab?

I wish Zakriyya was alive today; even he would have disagreed with you, Najib :-)

BTW I love to hear Ya Salat Ezzein from Zakariyya; whom did he compose it for?
I hear it from Sayyed Makkawi, but I never liked what Makkawi did with any of Zakariyya's composition (not to mention that I never heard him acknowledge that they are actually Zakariyya's compositions --- I've met many people who thought Ya Halwate-ddonya was composed by Makkawi!!!!!!!)

Luay

Najib
16-03-2006, 15:26
I was referring to Zakariya's Ahlel Hawa, especially with his use of ya leyl.

Does anyone have it?

luay
16-03-2006, 15:37
I recall hearing it, but I don't seem to have it --- I think I heard it on the zeryab forum.
I remember many of Zakariyya's songs were posted there.

Luay

Najib
16-03-2006, 16:27
There you go:

http://www.zamanalwasl.net/forums/showthread.php?p=3785#post3785

Now technically this clip proves what I was talking about.

This is about rhythm not maqam.

I'll try to explain it:

The clip at minute 00:26"

He sings (Dum) ya salat el (zein Dum) so the words of Ya salat el Zein are exactly distributed between the two Dums

Now with the clip at minute 02:08"

(Dum) He delays the "ya" and rushes the other words to still meet the next Dum in time. Now this is the beauty (for me) of his style. He does it so effortlessly.

It's not about hitting high notes, and flexibility of voice, of course Umm is the queen of stuff like this.

But it is the music craftmanship that the guy possess, and also I insist that he is a fantastic singer not only a composer. I will show more of this stuff and comment on it in the few coming days.

Going back to the clip I posted, it is also part of the "Ghanneely Shway" program, and I could see that there is a "Nada Sahab" on it. She maybe a relative of Victor who is a big fan of Zakaria, and he was the one who made me re-discover Zakaria the wonderful tarab singer, not just the composer.

I will put also his words about Zakaria's musical craftmanship.

luay
16-03-2006, 17:09
Najib,
Om Kulthoum's performances are full of such things, and even "worse" :-)
I'm going to compile a list of these things and post it very soon.

Luay

Hattouma
22-03-2006, 22:49
i missed this ..i would not compare zakaria to souma ,i love zakaria in ana fi intezarak and el-amal but have not heard Ahl Al-hawa by him ? let me tell you i like el-ward gamil from him much more than that of oum kolthoum ..to me it is like a different song ! :)

أبو علاء
22-03-2006, 23:08
Luay, I'm going to deser your camp in this one and take Najib's side (not for long, though:) ). 'um kalthum has never been good at rythm. Suffice it to listen to any of her liver performances and count the times she messes it up when it comes to the rythm. You'll remember her famous phrase about 'ibrahim 'afifi, her first riqq player. Wheras Zakariya had it "in the blood". Probably because he's a composer. Also maybe he owes it to his career as a munshid. This is one aspect among others relating to the craftmanship Najib is talking about so ritghtly and, there, he definitely overshadows 'um kalthum. The latter was instead served by her divine voice first simply as a singer and second and most of all as a female singer as I previously said, and on that ground, of course, Zakariya was out of competition.

luay
23-03-2006, 00:49
Abu A'laa,
I'm surprised you're taking the side of the man who's been posting viedos of Wahab all over the place :-)
I see your point. Actually, I once read in a book that Om Kulthoum considered Zakariyya to be the king of rhythm... I don't think she was talking about his singing, though, but about the rhythm he uses in his compositions.

Now I would still disagree on one count: Om Kulthoum sang a million times (middle eastern exaggeration :-) on the stage, and still, you guys are comparing Om Kulthoum's live performances to other singers' studio recordings. After standing on the stage for hours in a given night, OK was destined to finally make mistakes. Also, a studio recording can be repeated as many times until they "get it right". Does Om Kulthoum breaks the rhythm in any studio recording?

I don't know how to engage in a discussion about OK and not sound biased, because I'm really doing my best not to be :-) But I truly believe that comparing OK's live performances to someone else's studio recordings wouldn't help illustrate a point.

I'm currently listening to the Rubaa'eyyat that Mahmoud has just posted, and OK breaks the rhythm in a few places, but to me it's clear she's excited and exciting the audience. This would have never happened in a studio recording.

Again, I apologize for my blinding bias, and hope it won't make you desert "my camp" permanently.

BTW No, I don't know what OK said about Ibrahim A'fifi. What is it?

Luay

luay
23-03-2006, 01:11
Sorry Hatem that I didn't repsond to your post before.
Your point still falls into the same category of studio vs. live recordings for OK. Abu A'laa and I discussed this a long time ago. OK in studio recordings almost never deviates from the original melody, and makes it so fast (there is a studio recording of Raqq El Habib which she sang in 5 minutes!!! The same with El Warde Gameel, Ifrah Ya Albi, and all these songs .... she just sang them based on the original melody, without the slightest deviation, and again, with the music and singing being faster than usual).

My opinion...

Luay

salamerica
13-03-2007, 00:25
لقد اعتقدنا دهرا أنّه لا يوجد لهذا اللّحن الخالد سوى تسجيل يتيم هو المتداول في الأسواق والإذاعات إلى أن تكرّم أخونا محمود الشّامي ورفع مقطعا منه في منتدى زرياب منذ أشهر ؛ وها نحن نرفع لكم التّسجيل كاملا بما فيه تقسيم العود للقصبجي الّتي استهلّت بها الأغنية ؛ فأرجو أن تستمتعوا بهذا التّسجيل وكلّ عام وأنتم بخير والمنتدى بخير والفنّ العربيّ الأصيل بخير تملأ أنغامه الدّنيا بفضلكم وبفضل حَفَظَته الكرام.



El-'awwila fi-l-gharam composed by Zakariya 'ahmad and interpreted by 'um kalthum in a rare recording from a live concert in El-'azbakiya gardens in 1947
هذه ليست هدية عيد واحد، بل هدية أعياد كثيرة ودائمة لكل من يعيش الأصالة في فكره ودمه وروحه. كنت أظن أن معرفتي بأم كلثوم ربما تتجاوز معرفة الكثيرين، فإذا بها تتضاءل وتتمحضل أمام معرفة هؤلاء الأساطين من أعضاء هذا المنتدى الرائع. استمعت طيلة ليل أمس إلى تلك المخلوق التي لم يطلق عليها اسم كوكب الشرق جزافا. لقد كانت بحق كوكبا يلمع في سماء الفن ونجما متلألئا لا أفول له مهما طال الزمن. أصدقوني القول، لو كتبت آلاف الصفحات لما وفيتها حقها وهي التي ما زالت تحملنا على أمواج سحرها من وحشة غربتنا إلى رائحة الشرق وعبق الجمال والحب والخير.

شكرا لأبي علاء ولكل من ساهم في إثراء هذا المنتدى بكل ما لذ وطاب من مائدة سيدة الغناء العربي.

أبو علاء
13-03-2007, 01:18
الشّكر لك ومرحبا بك في المنتدى.

luay
21-10-2012, 02:38
I recently read a story that El Awwela was written by Bayram on the occasion of Zakariya's son's death! I never heard this story before, but the lyrics convey much more sadness than just a "lost love". Anyone knows anything about this?

Luay

أبو علاء
21-10-2012, 03:01
I recently read a story that El Awwela was written by Bayram on the occasion of Zakariya's son's death! I never heard this story before, but the lyrics convey much more sadness than just a "lost love". Anyone knows anything about this?

Not the least hint. Never heard about it. But it sounds plausible after all.

AmrB
21-10-2012, 20:58
The story is all over the internet with more elaborate details, but it is full of anachronisms and exaggerations. My own feeling is that it's just another urban legend. If you can't look it up in Arabic, Luay, I will be glad to send you a link in a private message.

luay
22-10-2012, 01:28
Thanks Amr.
No, if the posts on the web are just garbage, no need to forward them to me ;-)
It was just recently that I read the story for the first time, and thinking about "Waool Ya E'in Esa'efeeni", "Hatteit A'la-l-Albi Eidi", "Elli Garali O'mro Ma Yigra", etc., the story sounded plausible.
BTW I do read Arabic.

Best,
Luay

AmrB
23-10-2012, 03:20
I think that it is perhaps a greater sign of genius that the song is not about a particular event. However, the relationship of the personal, the historical, and the artistic in an artist's life is often a subject of discussion, if not controversy. I used to be very interested in such matters, but I found myself often disappointed by the mundane truth that in the majority of cases, great art is produced in ordinary, even boring, circumstances.
And, I do know that you read Arabic, I just remember that you couldn't type in Arabic, hence my suggestion

luay
24-10-2012, 03:06
in the majority of cases, great art is produced in ordinary, even boring, circumstances.


Agreed.
I recall listening to Ahmad Rami talking about the circumstances of writing Hagartak, and what he meant by "Nea'mah" in
"Haramti Rohi Min Kolli Nea'mah". He was talking about the mango fruit!!!

Best,
Luay

Dmitrii
09-03-2013, 17:58
I practically don't know Arabic, so please excuse my obviously foolish question (I guess it could be a standard beginning for my messages here):
Why are the verbs at the endings of the first three lines of this song formally in plural ( أمروني = they commanded me, etc.)?

fredlag@noos.fr
09-03-2013, 18:30
Dear Dimitri,
1/ plural can be used as an alternate way to express the passive/impersonal form in Arabic, particularly in colloquials (i.e. qatalūh > they killed him = he was killed). It is certainly the underlying reason here.
2/ Bayram al-Tunsi, whether inventing this form or re-using a folk form in his "learned" colloquial poetry, follows the el-awwela/et-tanya/et-talta (or even in the pseudo-dialect he uses "et-talita", whereas internal /i/ is normally deleted in Cairo Arabic) pattern, defining successive phases of a story, a pattern in which each verse has to end with a verb in this impersonal plural form. For instance, referring to his own life story, he wrote :
El awwela masr 2alu Tunsi we nafuni
Et tanya Tunis we fiha el ahl ga7aduni
Wet talita Baris, we fe Baris gahaluni

First stage, Egypt, they said I was Tunsi/ I was a Tunisian national, and they banished me
Second stage Tunis, and there, my own people disavowed me
Last stage Paris, and in Paris they ignored me

so El awwela fel gharam is a poem that applies to the standard phases of the (eternally unfulfilled) love story this traditional (?/ or Beiramian?) ternary pattern.


Fred.

Dmitrii
09-03-2013, 18:34
Dear Fred, thank you very much!

luay
09-03-2013, 19:35
Bayram also used this style in his Sawt Assalam, a poem he wrote after the 1956 war (the "tripartite aggression" against Egypt) and where he said:
El Awwela Dakhlah-l-Bilad Mestaa'merah (referring to Britain)
We-Ttanya Baa'd El-Inkisar Metkabbarah (referring to France)
We-Ttalata A'la-l-A'rab Metaaggarah (referring to Israel)

Luay

Dmitrii
09-03-2013, 20:13
Yes, I read about it in Virginia Danielson's book! Besides, it seems interesing to me that she tells there that this ternary form is "one of the shapes common to the Egyptian mawwal". Maybe it correlates somehow with your remark: "to me, of all genres of music, I feel that El Awwela is closest to a mawwal than to anything else".

fredlag@noos.fr
10-03-2013, 13:39
There Dimitrii you are somehow confusing different levels of meaning connected to the word "mawwal" :

1- mawwal is very vague term designing an ensemble of poetic forms through history
2- it is an equally vague term designing an ensemble of musical forms through history
3- the term seems to suggest a link between poetry and music, in the sense that a mawwal can be/should be sung and not merely recited, although the distinction between singing and reciting can be tricky in some instances of rural "folk" mawwal.

1- it can refer to narrative poems, religious poems, epic poems, love poems. I would suggest the common points are
* the use of either colloquial Arabic or an intermediary variety between colloquial and classical Arabic
* the use of various linguistic puns and particularly paranomasis (jinas, jinas murakkab)

2- the common point would be the absence of composed melody and the fact that the singer/cantor/reciter extemporizes his idiosyncratic melody for the piece. But then again, in the 20th century you could find in the learned repertoire some "composed mawawil", originally an oxymoron. In the learned repertoire, it should be either freely sung without a regular rythmic cycle, or extemporized on an ostinato, like cycle bamb or shiftetelli.

So Ginny was referring to El awwela being a "learned repertoire" song built on a pattern that is reminiscent of folk mawawil on the literary/poetic level, whereas Luay (I think) was referring to the huge part of extemporization in this song and the fact that the actually composed element seems minimal, and when it is indeed composed, it still has this haunting, slow, mesmerizingly repetitive aspect of the learned repertoire early 20th century mawwal.

luay
10-03-2013, 15:38
whereas Luay (I think) was referring to the huge part of extemporization in this song and the fact that the actually composed element seems minimal, and when it is indeed composed, it still has this haunting, slow, mesmerizingly repetitive aspect of the learned repertoire early 20th century mawwal.

Precisely.

Luay

Dmitrii
10-03-2013, 21:26
It is a sheer pleasure, Fred, to read your detailed and structured messages.

Well, I understand that VD and Luay are referring to different things, but I suppose these things may correlate somehow... but it is only a vague guess, of course.

Next newbie's question I'd like to ask is about melody. At the beginning of the song the orchestra repeats many times a refrain of four ascending notes. It seems to me that these four notes form something like the Rast tetrachord: whole tone - 3/4 tone - 3/4 tone. Like G - A - B half-flat - C'. Am I right?

Dmitrii
16-03-2013, 07:08
Thank you.

أبو علاء
16-03-2013, 13:17
Thank you.
Dmitrii, the number of members is rather limited, the number of informed ones with a good musical background is even more limited and those of them who are really active are a very few. I'm one of the very few who are constantly following what's going on in the forum and I've seen your question since you posted it. But I couldn't try and reply because I lack the theoretical background with regard to modes and scales let alone when tones are expressed in the anglo-saxon way rather than the European one. For instance, Luay who took part in the exchange can't tell for sure which mode a section is unlike Frederic. Unfortunately you never know when Frederic is willing to intervene. So, please, don't take it personally.



Next newbie's question I'd like to ask is about melody. At the beginning of the song the orchestra repeats many times a refrain of four ascending notes. It seems to me that these four notes form something like the Rast tetrachord: whole tone - 3/4 tone - 3/4 tone. Like G - A - B half-flat - C'. Am I right?
One thing I'm sure of is that it is rast, but I'm not capable of detailing the single notes.

Dmitrii
16-03-2013, 17:13
Thank you, Abu A'laa. You confirmed my guess (that it is Rast tetrachord).

luay
02-07-2013, 03:01
Very quick questions to those who know: In the music preceding Hatteit A'la-l-Alb, does Zakariyya descend the entire music scale?
I mean the first 8 seconds here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U5NQu4HM9mo&list=HL1372722998

(we can delete the link once the question is asked).

Also, does it resemble Qalbun Bighayri Gharamin, Gesmon Mina-Rrouhi Khali in Wahab's Saherto?

Thanks.
Luay

أبو علاء
03-07-2013, 15:10
In the music preceding Hatteit A'la-l-Alb, does Zakariyya descend the entire music scale?
I mean the first 8 seconds here:


Also, does it resemble Qalbun Bighayri Gharamin, Gesmon Mina-Rrouhi Khali in Wahab's Saherto?


I'm afraid I'm not the best qualified person to answer these questions but I'll try.
I can't tell whether we have a full scale descent, but we do have a series of descending tetrachord (is this the right term?) sequences starting in the upper area of the mode and ending in the lower one. I'm not sure whether the first and ultimate notes correspond to the highest and lowest ones in a closed full scale or not.
As for the second question, the technique is the same, some of the sequences might be identical or more or less similar but the ending ones are different because we're in a different mode (nawa 'athar in the sahirtu part vs higaz to sikah in the sequence of el-'awwila). More knowledgeable members may come with better answers.

luay
03-07-2013, 15:33
Many thanks Abu A'laa. Yes, I noticed the difference in the ending of the two pieces. But, as for the rest, I had no idea.
Every time I try to "learn" more about music, I discover how hopeless I am :-)

Best,
Luay