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Brian Prunka
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light.gif posted on 3-26-2014 at 05:08 PM
Favorite Taqasim?


So, I am working on a project: I am transcribing and doing a comparative analysis of various Arabic taqasim in the the main maqamat (Rast, Bayati, Sikah, Saba, Nahawand, Hijaz, Kurd . . . possibly Ajam and Nikriz if I can find enough good ones). The goal is to compare (for example) the Rast of Abdel Wahab to Farid and Qassabgi, etc.

Obviously a big project! I have done a lot already but I thought I would appeal to the collective wisdom here to see if people had suggestions about taqasim that they think are really great.

A lot of Farid's taqasim are in the middle of songs, so it helps to know where to look. Of course I have Sounbati's main taqasim recordings and several by Qassabgi and Naqishbendi also.
I'm focusing on oud, but interested in other instruments also, particularly qanun since the style translates well to oud.






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Jody Stecher
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[*] posted on 3-26-2014 at 06:42 PM


Mohammed Abdl Karim's buzuq taqsims are extraordinary. Any of his many Bayati excursions would be a welcome addition, for instance.
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ameer
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[*] posted on 3-26-2014 at 07:12 PM


This one is my most consistent favorite for Farid:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bHhQfOkRNaU
And my favorite for George Michel:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4h1x6jCy0OU
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Brian Prunka
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[*] posted on 3-26-2014 at 07:30 PM


Thanks, guys. I had the George Michel one on the list already—great minds think alike. The Farid one is great, for sure.



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David Parfitt
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[*] posted on 3-27-2014 at 12:23 AM


Brian, are you including contemporary oud players too?



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Brian Prunka
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[*] posted on 3-27-2014 at 06:02 AM


David, I am spending a little time on contemporary players, who did you have in mind? I am trying to focus on traditional approaches only.



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suz_i_dil
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[*] posted on 3-27-2014 at 09:32 AM


In the art of taqasim I would say Munir Bashir
his interpretations are always full of classical sentences which are nice to memorize.
For exemple this rast:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A3G7VW1RMks




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David Parfitt
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[*] posted on 3-27-2014 at 10:27 AM


Quote: Originally posted by Brian Prunka  
David, I am spending a little time on contemporary players, who did you have in mind? I am trying to focus on traditional approaches only.


When I saw your post, the first person who sprang to mind is Samir Tahar from Algeria (I have 4 CDs of his taqasim). Certainly a very traditional style, but from a different tradition to the other players you have mentioned.

On reflection, you might also want to consider Fawzi Sayeb, as I understand his style reflects a very old Egyptian approach to taqasim.

Said Chraibi is another possibility, for the same reason as Samir Tahar.

I could probably come up with a few more suggestions with a bit more thought.

All the best

David




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Brian Prunka
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[*] posted on 3-27-2014 at 12:01 PM


I had considered Samir Tahar. I kind of ruled out both Munir Bashir and Said Chraibi for now because I think at present it is more practical to focus on people who are more in line with traditional Levantine/Egyptian style.
Tahar is a little different but seems basically in that tradition, from what I've heard.

Bashir has many Turkish and Iraqi elements that are different. It would be interesting to do a comparison of Bashir to clarify the different elements, but that is way outside the scope of what I am trying to do with this project. Both he and Chraibi are wonderful players but too idiosyncratic for my purposes. There are a lot of "classical sentences" as Suzidil put it, but there is a lot of other stuff too, and a peculiar accent ;)

Fawzi Sayeb was self-taught and I am skeptical about the relationship of his taqasim to the tradition. I don't mean this as a criticism, but I am looking more for musicians that are undisputed masters . . . otherwise it is too hard to separate the 'noise' if that makes sense.

Essentially I don't want a wide variety of styles since it detracts from the purpose of comparison of common language. I wasn't clear on that in the initial post.




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[*] posted on 3-27-2014 at 12:58 PM


Don't forget about George Michel, he is one of my favorite players:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4h1x6jCy0OU




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Brian Prunka
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[*] posted on 3-27-2014 at 02:02 PM


Lol, Mav—you posted the same clip as Ameer! I guess that's three votes for that one (including mine).



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David Parfitt
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[*] posted on 3-27-2014 at 02:17 PM


Quote: Originally posted by Brian Prunka  
I had considered Samir Tahar. I kind of ruled out both Munir Bashir and Said Chraibi for now because I think at present it is more practical to focus on people who are more in line with traditional Levantine/Egyptian style.
Tahar is a little different but seems basically in that tradition, from what I've heard.

Bashir has many Turkish and Iraqi elements that are different. It would be interesting to do a comparison of Bashir to clarify the different elements, but that is way outside the scope of what I am trying to do with this project. Both he and Chraibi are wonderful players but too idiosyncratic for my purposes. There are a lot of "classical sentences" as Suzidil put it, but there is a lot of other stuff too, and a peculiar accent ;)

Fawzi Sayeb was self-taught and I am skeptical about the relationship of his taqasim to the tradition. I don't mean this as a criticism, but I am looking more for musicians that are undisputed masters . . . otherwise it is too hard to separate the 'noise' if that makes sense.

Essentially I don't want a wide variety of styles since it detracts from the purpose of comparison of common language. I wasn't clear on that in the initial post.


Definitely worth considering Samir Tahar if you can find room, but I understand your reasons behind ruling out the others.

How about Amer Ammouri and Muhammad Qadri Dalal from Syria?

One further piece of info, but not sure how useful it is. The Egyptian oud player Tarek Abdallah is working on, or has completed, a PhD on 'Virtuosity in the art of oud in the twentieth century', so he may have covered some of the same ground as you.

All the best

David




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[*] posted on 3-27-2014 at 02:38 PM


I really like taqasim by Taiseer Elias and Simon Shaheen. As far as I know, the only commercially available taqsim of Taiseer Elias is that on "Sihr Al Sharq" on "Mashreq Classics." Simon Shaheen's "Taqsim on the Beat" from "Turath" is also impressive.
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[*] posted on 3-27-2014 at 03:11 PM


Quote: Originally posted by David Parfitt  

How about Amer Ammouri


Nice call. I always thought that this one had some of the most sensational playing I've heard.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XT60sOyRhn0
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[*] posted on 3-27-2014 at 03:23 PM


Quote: Originally posted by Lysander  
Quote: Originally posted by David Parfitt  

How about Amer Ammouri


Nice call. I always thought that this one had some of the most sensational playing I've heard.

[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XT60sOyRhn0
[/url]
I have at least 2 of Amer Ammouri's solo CDs, but I especially like some of his taqasim on the Salatin El Tarab recordings as excellent examples of SHORT taqasim (less than 2 mins.).
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[*] posted on 3-27-2014 at 05:42 PM


Hi Brian,
i am looking forward to what you come up with in terms of conclusion. Should be interesting !
+ 1 Georges Michel

Of course Farid and Sumbati are the kings but I think Farid was more like a Jimmy Hendrix and Sumbati an Eric Clapton if we can make comparisons. Maybe not as gifted dexterity wise but made up with his own style of melodic development. Where as Farid I think is the more classical mold but was so gifted that he could basically just play everything twice as fast as you could beleive it. The structure of his taqasims also have a nice build up story like a powerful balad and when it hits you its a fireworks show with the build up to the grand finale a massive explosion. ;)

here is my input,
Without adding to what was already said about them I agree with the following names too: Ameer Ammouri, Simon Shaheen, Qadri Dalal, Kamil Shajrawi.

Ameer Ammouri especially (2.23 of this clip https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mrq731pqV9Y) I think this captures the essence of what arabic oud improvisation is all about. Maybe a little more showmanship than necessary but to pull this up live... you gotta be very relaxed up there playing with Sabah Fakhri!!

Lysander, that is a copy of a famous Farid el Atrash taqasim by the way.




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[*] posted on 4-4-2014 at 04:52 AM


Intriguing project! Since you've mentioned other instruments in your initial
post such as the qanun, may I suggest Muhammad al-'Aqqad Hijaz-qar
taqsim muwaqqa' (on the bamb rhythm) & Abrahm Salman Shahanaz taqsim
to the same rhythm. I realize it's not in the main maqamat but I'm sure there
are some phrases there involving them for your project (I'm just an amateur listener
and can recognize a bit of the maqamat; wish I could learn how to play).

Muhammad al-'Aqqad - Hijaz-qar taqsim

Abrahm Salman - Shahanaz taqsim

And I'm in love with this Rast taqsim mursala by Abraham Salaman. One
of the finest examples of his amazing talent.

Abraham Salman - Rast taqsim

Muhammad Abdu Saleh, the main qanunist for Saleh Abdel Hay, has many
taqasim on youtube, mainly as introduction or as accompaniment to Abdel-Hay's
layali & mawwawil. This one in Sikah is a prime example.

Saleh Abdel Hay - Sikah mawwal (Muhammad Abdu Saleh on the qanun)

I think a side-project - which would benefit this study of taqasim in main maqamat
in particular, and the old approach to maqamat in general - is the study of the old
style qassaid. Taking just three of them in Bayati would reveal that they rarely
veered dramatically from the main maqam, and generally had the same melodic
progression. I think Dr. Frédéric Lagrange talked about this in a recent podcast @AMAR website.





Nate.
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MatthewW
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[*] posted on 4-4-2014 at 06:24 AM


well Sunbati has already been mentioned.

Abadi El Johar was no slouch on the oud, you might like to consider him?
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