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Author: Subject: David Muallem: The Maqam Book
Jack_Campin
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[*] posted on 8-8-2016 at 02:17 AM
David Muallem: The Maqam Book


Anybody here got this?

http://www.ortav.com/sunshop/index.php?l=product_detail&p=403




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Microber
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[*] posted on 8-8-2016 at 03:58 AM


I have it.
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Jack_Campin
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[*] posted on 8-8-2016 at 04:03 AM


It's rather expensive, did you find it worth it?



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Jody Stecher
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[*] posted on 8-8-2016 at 06:42 AM


I have the book and think it is brilliant. The *Search* function here on this site will bring up earlier discussions about the book. The second half of the book gives a good description and analysis of the maqam-s in general use these days, presenting the opinions of various past experts as well as his own opinion. The first half provides a unique and effective doorway to Maqam Thinking. Instead of describing the musical thinking in maqam music using the language of the Western music conservatory, he instead describes the basics of *western* music using the language of maqam. By studying basic ideas already familiar to the reader using intellectual tools that are at first unfamiliar, the reader is then prepared to study and appreciate the maqam descriptions in the second half of the book.
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[*] posted on 8-8-2016 at 09:40 AM


The book is not really expensive for the size and depth. It is far better than any of the other resources dealing with maqam (at least in English). He does a good job of helping explain each maqam and some of the standard theoretical ways of thinking about them, as well as typical modulatory schemes, etc. It also includes some notes on the pathway of each maqam's exposition. Though these are not melodically detailed enough to rely on, they do provide a starting point of what to listen for.
Where applicable, he references historical Arab theory texts, so if you don't read Arabic, this is probably as close as you are going to get.


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[*] posted on 8-8-2016 at 12:07 PM


Overall an interesting book, with one reservation : a significant number of the maqamat discussed in the book are of Ottoman origin, yet no Turkish sources have been used to prepare the book, which leads to some confusing statements about their structure.

The best part of the book is the attached CD, with short taqsims in all the maqamat presented in the text played by Abraham Salman, one of the greatest qanun players of the 20th century. I enjoyed playing the CD in random mode and tried to recognise every maqam...


Dan
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John Erlich
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[*] posted on 9-19-2016 at 04:15 PM


Quote: Originally posted by Danielo  
Overall an interesting book, with one reservation : a significant number of the maqamat discussed in the book are of Ottoman origin, yet no Turkish sources have been used to prepare the book, which leads to some confusing statements about their structure.

The best part of the book is the attached CD, with short taqsims in all the maqamat presented in the text played by Abraham Salman, one of the greatest qanun players of the 20th century. I enjoyed playing the CD in random mode and tried to recognise every maqam...


Dan


Note that the author is Iraqi. He is an Arabic-speaking Jew who emigrated from Iraq to Israel in about 1950. Though unfortunate, the lack of deeper references to origins of certain maqamat in Ottoman music is not surprising. I think younger musicians of his ethnicity and nationality tend to be, paradoxically, more connected to Turkish music than Arabic music, for the obvious [geo]political reasons.
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[*] posted on 10-23-2016 at 11:01 AM


I have the book, and I know next to nothing on the subject (I don't play the oud... yet), but I've certainly found it to be a helpful introduction to the study of maqamat, and I imagine that it will be a helpful resource for many years to come. I still prefer pulling a book off the shelf to googling for this kind of thing...Personally, I think his marginalizing of Ottoman and Iraqi references and approaches may have had to do more with presenting a simple and consistent structure for complete novices to follow without getting them too far in the deep end all at once.

I'm not sure I'd agree with the suggestion that younger Jewish Israelis playing this music are "more connected to Turkish music than Arabic music." There is a pretty significant surge in interest in Arabic and Judeo-Arabic music in Israel at the moment, fueled in part by the grandchildren of immigrants from across the Arabic world. This often takes the form of Arabic songs cropping up in pop music, such as A-WA's chart-topping pop album of songs learned from their Yemenite Jewish grandparents, or rock singer/guitarist Dudu Tassa's recent exploration of the Iraqi songs composed by his grandfather and great-uncle Daoud and Saleh Al-Kuwaity. There are artists with a stronger traditional emphasis, such as the outstanding young Moroccan-Israeli singer Neta Elkayam or the oud player and violinist Yair Dalal, whose music is largely drawn from the Iraqi tradition and his extended time spent with Bedouin musicians in the Negev. As far as I know (any members on the forum from that part of the world please correct me if I'm wrong), most organized Arabic music programs offered in say, universities, tend to be staffed by Palestinian citizens of Israel or Jewish Israelis who have studied with them or with Judeo-Arabic tradition bearers and their pupils. I'm sure there are a number of opportunities for studying Turkish music as well, but it's not something people I know from there have ever mentioned to me.

Ironically, the one exception that springs to mind is Mr. Muallem's son, Yinon, a percussionist and fine oud player himself. He focuses primarily on Turkish music (he's cited a couple of times in the book), studied oud with Yurdal Tokcan, and frequently performs with Turkish musicians.
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[*] posted on 10-25-2016 at 04:40 PM


Quote: Originally posted by ChanningPDX  
I have the book, and I know next to nothing on the subject (I don't play the oud... yet), but I've certainly found it to be a helpful introduction to the study of maqamat, and I imagine that it will be a helpful resource for many years to come. I still prefer pulling a book off the shelf to googling for this kind of thing...Personally, I think his marginalizing of Ottoman and Iraqi references and approaches may have had to do more with presenting a simple and consistent structure for complete novices to follow without getting them too far in the deep end all at once.

I'm not sure I'd agree with the suggestion that younger Jewish Israelis playing this music are "more connected to Turkish music than Arabic music." There is a pretty significant surge in interest in Arabic and Judeo-Arabic music in Israel at the moment, fueled in part by the grandchildren of immigrants from across the Arabic world. This often takes the form of Arabic songs cropping up in pop music, such as A-WA's chart-topping pop album of songs learned from their Yemenite Jewish grandparents, or rock singer/guitarist Dudu Tassa's recent exploration of the Iraqi songs composed by his grandfather and great-uncle Daoud and Saleh Al-Kuwaity. There are artists with a stronger traditional emphasis, such as the outstanding young Moroccan-Israeli singer Neta Elkayam or the oud player and violinist Yair Dalal, whose music is largely drawn from the Iraqi tradition and his extended time spent with Bedouin musicians in the Negev. As far as I know (any members on the forum from that part of the world please correct me if I'm wrong), most organized Arabic music programs offered in say, universities, tend to be staffed by Palestinian citizens of Israel or Jewish Israelis who have studied with them or with Judeo-Arabic tradition bearers and their pupils. I'm sure there are a number of opportunities for studying Turkish music as well, but it's not something people I know from there have ever mentioned to me.

Ironically, the one exception that springs to mind is Mr. Muallem's son, Yinon, a percussionist and fine oud player himself. He focuses primarily on Turkish music (he's cited a couple of times in the book), studied oud with Yurdal Tokcan, and frequently performs with Turkish musicians.


To the best of my knowledge, though, most young Israelis who study Near Eastern music seriously have better access to Turkey and Turkish musicians than they do to musicians in the Arab World. Sadly, most of the 1st generation of Israeli musicians who were born and trained in the Arab World have died off.
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[*] posted on 10-25-2016 at 05:47 PM


That part is generally true... It's a lot easier to fly to Istanbul than, say, Beirut or Baghdad...

Back to the book, I went back and read through it again, and I can see what Danielo means a little more clearly now. That said, it still seems like an excellent book. I'm happy that many others seem to agree.

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