Saturday, 2 February 2013

Arabic Music And Contemporary Pre Western Middle Eastern Music

The music of the Middle East and the Arabic nations dates back thousands of years, and has influenced countless other musical traditions. Contemporary Middle Eastern music combines the traits of traditional Eastern folk music with popular music of the Western hemisphere, including elements of classical music. Ghazal, Qawali, Maghrebi, Kahleeji and Arabic Pop are just a few of the numerous styles of music emanating from Egypt, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and the Persian Gulf in the musics early modern forms, Middle Eastern composers integrated their folk styles with Western influenced orchestras, though currently the trend has turned back toward smaller ensembles. Pre Western Middle Eastern music utilized smaller ensembles.

The Arabic nations music along with Middle East music dates back thousands of years, and has influenced countless other musical styles during its evolution. Instruments such as the Oud - a pear shaped stringed instrument, Persian Tars - a plucked and strummed instrument, similar to an Oud, with a sound board of stretched skin rather than wood, Neys - wind instrument, Qanouns - horizontal instrument with many strings, resembling a dulcimer and Kamenches and Rebabas - both fiddle like, bowed instruments, still characterize this musical genre. Notable Arabic musicians include Kazem el Saher, Nawal el Zoughbi, Najwa Karam, Assi el Hillani, George Wassouf, and Amro Diab. Middle Eastern rhythms were originally devised in antiquity on frame drums, the Arabic tabla, the dumbek, the darabuka, finger cymbals, and other traditional percussion instruments. Though an authentic Middle Edstern ensemble still contains such instruments, the drum set is often used in modern day Middle Eastern ensembles.

Traditional Middle Eastern rhythms covered a wide array of odd time signatures. However, as a result of Western musics influence, a large portion of contemporary Middle Eastern music is composed in duple or other meters containing even numbers. Thus, the first two following drum set patterns are written in 4/4. Their overall sound and rhythm serve as accurate examples of traditional Middle Eastern music adapted for the drum set. Like the 5/4 time signature, 7/4 meter is relatively easy to count. It's normal to count a song in 7/4 in one of three ways: 1) count all seven beats per measure; 2) count a measure of 4/4 followed by a measure of 3/4; 3) count a measure of 3/4 followed by a measure of 4/4.

Probably the most famous rock song written in 7/4 is Pink Floyd's "Money". As with other styles, there are countless variations and embellished drum grooves to play in 7/4. The tempo range is similar to that of 5/4, with quarter note equal from one hundred to one hundred and thirty two beats per minute. The 5/8 meter is often more difficult to feel than 5/4 or 7/4 because its normally played at a faster tempo. One practical way of counting this meter is to sound out all five eighth notes per measure. However, due to its faster tempo, it may be more practical to break down the meter into two separate groupings, either a 3 plus 2 grouping or a 2 plus 3 grouping. The pulse of 5/8 meter is often brisk, with eighth note equal from one hundred and ninety two to three hundred and twenty beats per minute.


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