Afghani songs (or maybe Iranian)

I’ve been hunting down songs this evening, following the titles, lyrics and artist names that the guys in the detention centre wrote down for me last week. Here are a couple that they sang to me, and wrote the lyrics down for:

Sound quality is a bit dodge, but the songs are great. And I love the nonchalant way the guy in the first film clip clicks his fingers during the instrumental breaks.

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6 comments so far

  1. John on

    Great stuff. Took me quite a while to work out what time signature the first song was in. That call and response part is so syncopated!

    • musicwork on

      I know, I love it. I have to spend a bit more time with it to figure out the time sig (though if you have got it, that will save me the trouble) :-). It changes from the first line to the second, and then once again in the mid-section. I’m thinking this will be a good song for the whole group to focus on. The second song (Bia Ke Borem Ba Mazar) offers great possibilities for percussion, I think.
      I have located a harmonium for the group, will be bringing it with me on Saturday.

      • John on

        Isn’t it all just in 6/8 with the stress on the 1 and 4 (or is that 3/8? I never made it that far through my theory books)?

        I’m having real trouble finding the beat under the call and response bit but the pulse still seems to be there.

  2. Yani on

    You can count it as a fast 6/8, the pulse is basically on the 1
    or you can count it as 1,2,3,4 on every beat or a slow 1, 2 ,3 4 and then the pulse is on the 1 and 3… its a different way to feel the pulse than western syncopated music like R&B which focuses on the 2 and 4.

    Once you start listening to this music a lot you get used to it and its very easy to feel it and get all the words into the rhythm…

    • musicwork on

      Hi Yani, thanks for reading and for your comment. Yes, the 6/8 approach worked well. As did playing the song through a decent set of speakers in order to hear the bass line more clearly. I’ve transcribed it out now, just to get it clear for myself. I love the way the melody flits around the pulse.
      The second song is much more straight forward. Lots of percussion and drumming will be a focus on that I think.
      I’m enjoying reading about your workshops in Brisbane very much. Keep up the inspiring work!

  3. […] he brought from his room. We decided to work on Bia ke borem ba mazar, the second song from the YouTube clips I found. “It is a very old song,” I heard the Afghani woman interpreter/guard tell one of her […]


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