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Author: Subject: Question about Um Kulthoum
SamirCanada
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[*] posted on 5-12-2005 at 09:17 PM


Thank you TP for letting me know siret el hob was performed with Rahat el Arwah.
I had never been able to identify the maqam when I heard it.
I found out that that one of my favorite songs witch is called Aala Babi performed by Melhem Barakat is in that maqam. its a lot of fun to play along. Although Iam yet to be able to fully play along with siret el 7ob...

Perhaps many of you arent familiar with that composer and signer. I find he's a shining light for arabic music right now. Its pure tarab
http://songs.6arab.com/barakat..3ala-babi.ram
Enjoy:xtreme:
Samir
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[*] posted on 5-12-2005 at 09:42 PM


Samir,

Seret el Hob is one of the songs I enjoy playing the most. Baligh Hamdi really knew what was going on when he wrote this. Keep in mind that not all of it is Rahat el Arwah, just a fragment of it. There's some Irak in there, some Suznak as well. Anyway, we'll get to that after everyone feels comfortable with el-Atlal, which was quoted by a friend of mine to take a year to master. I think with the modified pitch file, you guys will have it down much quicker than that!

TP21




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[*] posted on 5-12-2005 at 09:48 PM


Jameel,

I almost forgot to thank you, man! I was so excited when you posted it, I went to go listen to it to see if I can match the word to the meaning. But I had my oud next to me, so I just ended up playing it. But still! Thank you very much! Is this the first verse, or first few verses or what?

TP21




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SamirCanada
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[*] posted on 5-12-2005 at 09:56 PM


Thanks TP
I'll have some time to practice more of al-Atlal over the weekend and you can let me know how its comming along. Hopefully JT we'll join us...
Cheers
SAmir
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[*] posted on 5-12-2005 at 09:59 PM


Samir,

The first half of the song that I've heard so far isn't too difficult. I'd caution you all to be careful if you're playing a Nahawand tetrachord or a Rast one. That'll get your ears sharp. :D

Once you get some practice underway, and you're comfortable enough to record something for us, please feel free to do so.

For those of you who can read Arabic:

http://lmrk.free.fr/souma/al_atlal.gif

Enjoy, everyone!

TP21




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[*] posted on 5-13-2005 at 01:11 PM


sidi, is there any way i can download riad sumbati songs that you posted the liks to? i can only play them by going to that website and clicking on it. is there anywhere i can buy it from. honestly that is my favourite kind of music. if you can help then let me know. thanks in advance;)



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thumbup.gif posted on 5-13-2005 at 04:35 PM
Hey Habeebna,


Sure I can help, I'll have Al-Atlal ready for you by 20:00GMT tomorrow. Tell me tonight if you need the other ones too. I'll pass them to you over the weekend.


-Sidi:wavey:
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[*] posted on 5-14-2005 at 12:00 PM
And here it is:


Al Atlal - By Riyad Sunbati on Oud (RealAudio - 5.7MBs)

**This link will remain active for 7 days, as of today.




Enjoy,

Sidi:wavey:
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[*] posted on 5-14-2005 at 01:41 PM


thanks for posting that sidi. could you show me where to get the other song. much appreciated dude!;)



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[*] posted on 5-15-2005 at 12:17 PM
Hey Habeeb,


I don't think there's a place you can download those. Give me some time and I'll post them for everyone's enjoyment.


-Sidi
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[*] posted on 6-18-2005 at 10:24 PM


Hey TP
Do you think you could post Siret el Hob in a modified version?
Thanks
Samir
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[*] posted on 6-18-2005 at 10:41 PM


Hey Samir,

I have the file on my other computer (which isn't working at the moment). I do, however, know how much the sound file should be altered by. If you download the Amazing Slow Downer, load that file you have for Seret el Hob (hopefully, it's the same as the one I have). Proceed to then change the pitch from 0 to +2.92 (or however close you can get it to that). You should be set from there. Once I fix my computer, I'll be sure to post it anyway for the sake of those who don't want to download the program.

TP21

P.S. Is everyone done with el-Atlal already!?!




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[*] posted on 6-19-2005 at 09:36 AM


Hey.. I got Al-Atlal prety much figured out.
I managed to get siret el hob pitched at +2.92 but the problem is that the evaluation period is what I got. So only the first 3 minutes are available to listen. It sounds really good tho TP.
thanks
Samir
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[*] posted on 6-19-2005 at 02:59 PM


hey all
can someone post the osng in mp3 format so i can try
thx sammy
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[*] posted on 6-25-2005 at 07:04 AM


7aram miskeeni, you made her sound like George Wassouf!

:D

Keep up the great work, TP21 et al! I might be able to help with some storage and bandwidth on a few of these from my colocated server.
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[*] posted on 10-25-2005 at 07:44 PM


Hey everyone,

So I finally got my computer up and running again a few weeks ago (the computer with all the sound files and the cool programs and stuff). If any of you are still interested in having Om Kolthoum songs modified to be the pitch that you can play them on the oud, please let me know. Also, if there are any other songs I can help with, please feel free to u2u me; I'll send you my e-mail address there, and then we could get the file up here in no time.

I have quite a number of Om Kolthoum songs that I know what pitch they should be at, and would be very happy to share with you all. I ask for nothing in return, except that you all have fun with them

TP21




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[*] posted on 3-2-2006 at 10:18 AM


For all those that were following this thread a while back. Please post what you have done so far with al-Atlal.
here's my shot of the begining parts.
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[*] posted on 2-23-2021 at 07:18 PM


Yes, I'm resurrecting this thread from 15 years ago.

Why?

Because it's 15 years later and we can now handle larger files and better formats for music files, and I'm hoping some of the more recent members can get some value from this.

Also, I'm playing oud again after taking like 14 years off.

What was this topic about?

So, here's the gist - A long long long long long time ago a bunch of us were trying to play along with and learn Umm Kulthum songs and struggling because the tunings were sometimes "off" on a lot of the recordings.

What does "off" mean?

In some cases they were out of tune just enough so that the notes didn't match any standard tuning, which would make it almost impossible to play along with.

In other cases they were perhaps "in tune" but with a tonic note that would make the song very difficult to play on oud for most beginners (a Maqam on Bb for example).

Why were they off?

This was the subject of some debate and I'm not interested in relitigating it again, but we landed on three possibilities, any of which could be true for a given recording.


  • The tuning was intentional to match her voice in that particular recording session or concert.
  • The recording quality degraded over time and from format to format, and the originals probably weren't the best quality to begin with.
  • The tuning was intentional because that's how the composer wanted it to sound.


So what was the answer?

User TruePharaoh21 had a solution - He used a combination of tools (Amazing Slow Downer was one) to change the pitch of a given recording without adjusting the tempo. This was great!

However, the problem in 2005 was that we were dealing with RealAudio format due to file size limitations, and hosting those files (even though they were only a couple of MB in size) was also a challenge. Files would disappear after a few days, etc. etc.

So what now?

Now things are a bit different, and here's the reason I'm resurrecting this topic.

Back in 2001 or so, I bought a 72 CD Umm Kulthum boxed set which contains most of her recordings. The first thing I did when I got the set was to rip and encode each CD to MP3 (regrettably I didn't do FLAC, but the set is in my attic somewhere, so maybe some day I'll do it).

These MP3s have served me well over the years for casual listening, but I thought the other day - "Why don't I adjust the pitch and put them up on YouTube for the folks on the forum to use for practice and learning?"

So here I am.

I'm planning on starting with some of my favorites first (Serat El Hob, Baeed Anaak, Enta Omri, Al Atlal), but am happy to take requests. I haven't actually done one yet, but I'm sure once I get a rhythm (no pun intended) going, it won't take me too long. Most of the work will be spent figuring exactly how much to adjust the pitch and in which direction.

Once I get each song done, I'll upload it to YouTube (likely a "hidden" link to avoid DMCA hassles), and post the link here.

Is there a downside?

It depends on how much you've listened to the originals. Adjusting the pitch of the song will make it sound "different," even if it's more "in tune."
If you've got a good ear and you're used to the originals, it will sound off. It won't be quite as "off" as changing the key of a song in Western music, but difference in the sound of certain instruments (percussion), or in Umm Kulthum's voice may be noticeable.

That said, you'll be able to play along with them easier, which is the whole point of this.

Note: The songs will be the same tempo, and the intervals and maqamat will not change. It's literally just changing the overall pitch of the song to get it to a tuning that is more useful to beginning oud players like me.

Please let me know if you have any questions or comments or ideas! This was just something I came up with over the weekend, so I'm happy for any feedback.

Roddie
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[*] posted on 4-4-2021 at 07:31 PM


Resurrecting a 15 year old post is great.

Ok, I actually have some experience in what you're talking about. I haven't worked on Um Kalthoum, but my Youtube channel is for Farid El Atrache. One of the things I do is fix the speed of the audio to obtain natural pitch. What I quickly realized is that all the films, including the songs in the films are sped up by 3 to 6%. I believe this change occurred after decades of transfers. I don't think the original film reels were sped up.

For studio and concert recordings, yes, they can be off. Sometimes they could be too slow. I generally don't adjust a recording's speed if it's less than 1.5% off standard concert pitch, if the instruments being used are Arabic string instruments. Because I believe it's possible that the orchestra is off concert pitch by this small amount. However If the song includes piano, brass, etc., then I will take the deviation more seriously and consider making the changes.

My advice is adjust the tempo as well as the pitch. Besides making it more oud playable, actually try to fix the speed. If the pitch is off because of the wrong speed, then the tempo should absolutely change as well. I feel you will be doing something more important than making the song more playable, you will be fixing the speed! If you're talking 1 or 2%, nobody would notice. 3% I believe is right in the area that makes it more difficult to follow the song on a properly tuned instrument. That's right in the middle between a semi-tone. Use your ear to determine if it should be 3% faster or slower.




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[*] posted on 4-4-2021 at 08:43 PM


If there's one thing that's truly amazing about this thread, it's that so many of the people commenting from back then are still here. And some of us have stayed in touch after a decade and a half.

Hope you're all well.




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[*] posted on 4-6-2021 at 07:35 AM


Indeed, good to see you too Peter. Kudos to Mike for keeping the site going all these years. I'm still in constant contact with a friend I met 20+ years ago on Wassim's site. He advises me on my current project. I fully expect us to be here 20 years from now too, god willing. Because love of music will always be a part of our lives.




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