January 22, 2024

All is not lost. Aleppo’s musical tradition in space and time. The First Episode of the UNIMED Podcast is online

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All is not lost. Aleppo’s musical tradition in space and time is the first episode of Mediterranean Intangible Heritage Soundscape, a podcast by Paolo Scarnecchia, produced by UNIMED.

This episode will let us travel in the Syrian musical tradition, and in particular in Aleppo’s ones. Jonathan Holt Shannon, interviewed for this episode, traces an historical excursus in the traditional music ending up in the contemporary Syrian scenario affected by the war and consequent migrations.

When Shannon’s book Among the Jasmine Trees: Music and Modernity in Contemporary Syria was published in 2006, Aleppo was still the Syrian musical city par excellence, famous for having been able to preserve its precious traditional musical heritage.

In this episode, recorded before the tragic earthquake of 6 February 2023, the anthropologist and ethnomusicologist – who spent a long time in Syria – explains the cultural and musical importance of this city in the context of the Arab world, and talks about his field research and the meetings with musicians before and after the dramatic civil war that forced a large part of Aleppo’s population into exile.

Listen to All is not lost. Aleppo’s musical tradition in space and time.


About Jonathan Holt Shannon

Dr. Jonathan H. Shannon is a professor at the Department of Anthropology of Hunter College of New York. He teaches courses in the anthropology of music and the arts, as well as Middle East studies, food, culture and politics. He is a Guggenheim fellow and has authored two influential monographs on Middle Eastern music. His research focuses on musical cultures of the Arab world and Mediterranean with a special focus on Syria, Morocco and Spain.

Dr. Shannon’s more recent research focuses on the music of Syrian refugees in Turkey, Germany and Sweden.


Discography of the episode

Disclaimer Mediterranean Intangible Heritage Soundscape is a podcast by Paolo Scarnecchia, produced by UNIMED, Mediterranean Universities Union. Musical works included in the Podcast are used for purpose of illustration for teaching, and not for commercial purposes.

Qadd Yallah Sawa
Al Turath Ensemble da Jardines de Jazmín, Pneuma PN 310 (2001)
(Música editada por Eduardo Paniagua aparece por cortesía de PNEUMA)

Samai hozam (traditional)
Al Turath Ensemble from Jardines de Jazmín, Pneuma PN 310 (2001)
(Música editada por Eduardo Paniagua aparece por cortesía de PNEUMA)

Habibi ala al’Dunya
Sabah Fakhri from Sabah Fakhri Au palais des congrès, Polydor 2672 055 / Alep Disques 2672 055 (1978) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oxJ4dolAttg

Ana fi intizarak

(Zakarya Ahmad – Bayram Tunsi) Umm Kulthum
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yYZG-ihqnDc

Taqsim for ‘ud
recorded by Jonathan Shannon (2021)

Dulab Hozam (traditional)
Al Turath Ensemble from Jardines de Jazmín, Pneuma PN 310 (2001)
(Música editada por Eduardo Paniagua aparece por cortesía de PNEUMA)

Layali (unmetered modal improvisation)
Mohammed Hamadye recorded by Jonathan Shannon in Istanbul, January 2019

Yamorro Oujban (Omar al-Batsch – arranged by Göksel Baktagir)
From Aleppo To Istanbul Project (live recording 2019)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8wuoPKDqdW8

Samai hozam (traditional)
Al Turath Ensemble from Jardines de Jazmín, Pneuma PN 310 (2001)
(Música editada por Eduardo Paniagua aparece por cortesía de PNEUMA)

Golden Flowers

by Ajam quartet. Composer Or Rozenfeld.
Ajam quartet are an active band from Berlin
Website: https://www.ajamquartet.com/

Mshaweerak Bilfada

Nour Yamm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xiEPRv5Cq8M

Dhikr
recorded by Jonathan Shannon at Othmaniyya Mosque in Alep (2006)

Zakhrafa

Samer Ali
Takht al-Nagham (live recording 2019)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n6VjsvT6o3s
More information SyrianMusic.org

Between the Strings

(Diab Mekari – Arif Altunkaya) Diab Mekari
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ygwQIBpzvZY
℗ Planet East (Royalty free – Music For Your Videos)


Disclaimer

Mediterranean Intangible Heritage Soundscape is a podcast by Paolo Scarnecchia, produced by UNIMED, Mediterranean Universities Union. Musical works included in the Podcast are used for purpose of illustration for teaching, and not for commercial purposes.