Culture, Globe, Music, United Kingdom

Jedba and Thraki, a multicultural musical approach

On 25 of January, music welcomes the new year with fascinating Sufi chants from Marrakech: Jedba, and dances and traditional Thracian songs and dances from the Rodopi Ensemble played on violin, clarinet, kanun and lute.

 

Jedba. Authorised Photo from ARCmusic

“Jedba” shows that sufi music is not confined to mosques or zawiya (monasteries) but is an intrinsic part of everyday Moroccan life.

It is music from the streets, homes, marketplace and desert. Profound, mystical, compelling, entrancing, the entire album is a journey through the heart and soul of Marrakesh. It pays homage to the spiritual music and songs of urban and rural Morocco.

Authentic mystical sufi chants with real depth, at times extended into trance-like repetition through the careful and skillful arrangements of co-producers Abdesselam Damoussi and Nour Eddine.

“Jedba” includes performances by singers and musicians as heard on the streets, in a Tangiers mosque, and features a sufi master musician from the Atlas Mountains. The resultant music is as varied as the landscapes from whence it comes, yet always remaining true to its origins.  “Jedba” – co-produced by two well-known Moroccan composers: Abdesselam (Abel) Damoussi and world music artist Nour Eddine – is a window into the musical myriad of Marrakesh and Jemaa el-Fnaa, a place like no other on earth. The album releases worldwide through ARC Music on January 25, 2019.

Dances and Songs from Thrace

“Thraki” is delightful collection of 11 traditional Thracian songs and dances from the Rodopi Ensemble performed using violin, clarinet, kanun with lute, and vocals performed by Drosos Koutsokostas.

Thraki Authorised Photo from ARCmusic

Rodopi’s sound is characterised by Yorgos Pagozidis’s healthy use of traditional percussion including the darabukka; dumbelek and def, two framed drums; the ‘tambourine’ riqq and North African bendir as well as finger cymbals. ‘Thraki’ joyfully honours and celebrates Thracian dance and folk songs.

Rodopi Ensemble is deeply connected to Thrace, a unique geographical and historical triangle in southeast Europe comprised of southern Bulgaria, northwestern Turkey and the north-eastern tip of Greece. Rodopi Ensemble’s name is directly inspired by the Thracian mountain range of Rodopi that runs for 240 km. Visitors to the Rodopi mountains enjoy the region’s abundant rivers, waterfalls and stunning scenery, while few may know the cultural significance of these rolling peaks.

Thrace holds a special place in ancient mythology as the liner notes outline, “This border land was considered as the gateway of Dionysus and ‘home of music’.” With ‘Thraki’, the Rodopi Ensemble ensure this gateway will remain open for many years to come.

“Thraki” is 100% pure Thracian music and is being released internationally through ARC Music on January 25th, 2019.

(Text and photos provided by Angie Lemon/ARC Music). More information: www.arcmusic.co.uk

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