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TRACK LISTING & TRANSLATIONS
1&2 Bashraf Murabba’ al Bayati بشرف مربع البياتي
3&4 Dawr Min Yawm دور من يوم عرفت الحب
5&6 Dawr Gaddidi Ya Nafs Ḥazzik دور جددي يا نفس حظك
7&8 Muwashshah Hagarni Ḥabibi موشح هجرني حبيبي
9&10 Taḥmīla Saba تحميله صبا
11&12 Mawwāl Ya Badr Timm Il Gimīl موال يا بدر تم الجميل
13&14 Muwashshah Ya Hilālan موشح يا هلالاً
15 Saut Mā Nāḥa Warqu صوت ما ناح ورْق
16 Saut Mā Nāḥa Warqu - alternative melody صوت ما ناح ورْق بلحن مختلف
Note: In songs of this period, particularly in muwashshah, terms like
Ya layl, Ya ‘ayn, ya salām, amān, ‘umrim, gānim (Turkish canım), were used a lot.
These are terms of exclamation or emotion to punctuate the lyrics and/or carry the melody.
1&2 Bashraf Murabba' Al Bayati (بشرف مربع البياتي)
A popular 19th century instrumental piece (origins unknown) composed in the Peşrev tradition.
Set in Bayati Mode and to 13/4 Murraba' beat usually associated with muwashshahat but here unusually set to a peşrev.
3&4 Dawr Min Yawm (دور من يوم عرفت الحب )
Composed by Mohammed Osman (1855-1900) this mode Bayati dawr is an example of early Egyptian urban music of the 1870s and early 1880s. A form of song more complex in structure than popular songs in the early 1800s.
Min yom ‘irift il ḥob albi inkawa wallah inkawa
Since I knew love, my heart burned
Ya ḥilw gūd bil ’urb wishfi-l-fu’ād marra
O lovely one, bestow your closeness and cure my heart, if only once
Yalli kawāk il ḥub isbur ‘ala wa‘dak
O you burnt by love, be patient with your fate
Filbo‘d walla-l urb ’ulluh ana ‘abdak
Tell them (the beloved): ‘In distance and closeness, I am your slave’
5&6 Dawr Gaddidi Ya Nafs Ḥazzik (دور جددي يا نفس حظك)
This Muhayyer mode dawr is an example from before Egypt's evolution of the dawr as started by Osman and Hamuli.
A form of song popular in the early to mid 1800s. It's catchy yet simple melody allows for vast space to improvise.
Gaddidi ya nafs ḥazzik, munyati ilhāgir ta 'aṭaff
O Self, renew your fortunes! The departed who I desire has shown sympathy
Wa bashir iluns wāfa
and the harbinger of good times has kept their vow
W ḥabib il alb sharraf
And the heart’s beloved has, with their presence graced us.
Ah ya salām min rimsh ‘īnak wayya -l-ḥawāgib ya salām
Ya salam, the lashes of your eyes, with your brows, ya salam
Bil ‘azāb iḥna riḍīna, da-l-bi’aad makansh wāgib
I accepted the torment, the distance was needless
7&8 Muwashshah Hagarni Ḥabībi (موشح هجرني حبيبي)
Like all muwashahat pre 1850s, Writer and composer unknown and very little is known about the origins of this mowashahat. It is in Hijaz Mode and set to a popular and typically expansive muwashshah rhythm called 'muhajjar' in 14/4.
Hagarni ḥabībi wala zanb li
He left me, and I had committed no sin
Nadīt ya ṭabibi, bilālhi riqqa li
I called (to the beloved): ‘O my healer, for the sake of God, soften’
Ghazāli hagar w 'anni nafar
My gazelle has departed and spurned me
W khalīt li ‘īni il buka wa-l-ṣahar
You left my eyes to tears and sleeplessness
9&10 Tahmīla Ṣaba (تحميله صبا)
Tahmila is a playful instrumental form, probably more popular in less affluent surroundings, cafes rather than palaces.
A very popular form based around a collective playing of a basic melody with interludes of individual instrumental
improvisations by various members of the ensemble.
11&12 Mawwal Ya Badr Timm il Gimīl (موال يا بدر تم الجميل)
The mawwal is a form still popular today. It is based on minimal instrumental accompaniment and can have no rhythmic accompaniment at all. It is an opportunity for the lead vocalist to illustrate his singing skills and improvisational prowess.
The recorded example is set to Jeharkah mode. This mawwal’s beauty lies in the use of word play and homonyms.
Badri in each different sentence and grammatical formation, means my moon, early or I did not realise. The full moon is often used either as a metaphor for the beauty of the beloved's face or as a witness to the sleeplessness of the poet in love.
Ya badr timm elgimīl witla‘ lina badri
O full moon*, fulfil this favour, and appear to us early
Yikfa malāmiḥ gamālak min gamāl badri
Your beauty’s virtues are like those of the moon
Amsīt ya badr la ba‘lam wala badri
Evening came and I did not know or realise**
In kan ḥabībi yiwafīni la ṭīib wafraḥ
If my love would be loyal, I would heal and be joyous
W ’inn ma wafāni la bādir bildumū’ badri
And if they would not, I would give my tears readily
**such was the mind absent
13&14 Muwashshah Ya Hilālan (موشح يا هلالاً)
Like all muwashahat pre 1850s, the writer and composer is unknown and very little is known about the origins of this muwashshah.
It is in Neruz Mode (a derivative of Rast) and set to a popular and playful muwashshah rhythm called "Nawakht" in 7/4.
Again the moon is referenced but as a crescent representing the beloved.
Ya hilalan ghāba ‘anni waḥtagab
O Crescent- He disappeared from me and was shrouded
Wa hagarni la bizanbin wala sabab
He deserted me, with no fault or reason
Bilhawa ma nābani ghayru-l- ta‘ab
In love I gained nothing but weariness
Life dissipated from me
wala nilt il ‘arab
yet I did not achieve closeness
15 & 16 Saut Mā Nāḥa Warqu (صوت ما ناح ورْق)
A song form very popular in the Arabian Gulf region where classical poetry is put to improvisational melodies over very distinctive rhythms synonymous with the region.
In this recording the performer elects a melancholy poem, puts it to Rast mode and set to Saut Shami rhythm (a form of 4/4).
Ma nāḥa wargin wagharrad belghusūn illa ‘alīh elmadāmi’ hallati
With every cry and coo of the dove in the branches, my tears flowed