Flamenco and Arabic music

12 Jun Flamenco and Arabic music

ziryab_thumbTo explain the origin of the Arab-Andalusian or Andalusian music we must go back to the dawn of the Muslim era when the Visigoth Hispanic music combined with the Bedouin monodic singing; but since the ninth century, thanks to the presence of Ziryab, the great musician Baghdadi, a substantial transformation occurs as a result of their contribution to knowledge of the oriental classical school as well as his talent and sensitivity to break new ground in music time.

The Nuba, maximum musical expression of the moment, appears to us as a musical suite, a large vocal and instrumental symphony to Ziryab’s hand and laud and demanding care of harmony, rhythm and melody provide a new and profound guidance.

The Nuba is a variant modal musical unit that combines preludes and instrumental parts and sung, consisting of verses of varying length and capable of combining developmental songs, recitations, instrumental parts, etc. accelerating its planned and orderly pace adding to its final denouement turn singing and dancing running the syncopated rhythm of words and music in a long period of time.

You could list some flamingos kin to the musical structure that once created Ziryab, such as polyrhythms, Polarimetry, the presence of short stanzas and verses, hassles and invocations, his melismatic and modal character …, all exceeding the more ancient poetic formulation of classical casida, poetic canon of Muslim Andalusia, which makes us feel closer to this genre some flamenco, especially when read in classic modes.

Those are certainly clear flamenco ancestors, one of its deepest roots and yet insufficiently studied. On the basis of classical poetic casida Arab, Andalusian Nuba represents a substantial innovation with moaxajas later invention of the zejels and jarchas. Here they are linking the eastern Arabic music, Andalusian music and native Spanish popular music in general. And it is certainly the core link in the peninsular lyrical finally annealed in the Romanesque-Visigothic substrate and romance, Andalusian and Hebraic, being ultimately the seeder element of the great Hispanic medieval poetry. Irradiation, explain Stern or Emilio García Gómez is the key of both the Muslim and the Romanesque lyrical as the wake jarchas and zejels reaches occitania French, European troubadours, songs of Alfonso X or poems Portuguese Galician friend, among other flowering pollination.

The muwassaha, which expands from the Nuba , was created by muqadam b. the Mucafa to Qabri, «The Blind Goat» (847-920) poet who combines his knowledge of Arabic poetry cultured with an indigenous cultural base and spread with great success in Spain in the XI and XII century throughout the peninsula and the Mediterranean coast. This was a love song with multiple sections of short verses. With a fixed rhythmic organization, clear and regular beats that result in a recognizable time segmentation. And to round off and closing of these Andalusian poems and some Hebrew compositions also interwoven in moaxajas find documented the famous jarchas, small medieval ditties sung that are written already in romance and in Hebrew and of course in Arabic dialect, as might prove D. Emilio Garcia Gomez.

The evolution of jarcha disaggregated post muwassaha trunk shows the same metrics that flamenco structures, similar character and style. Muwassaha forms as reflected in the Spanish ballads and medieval songbooks and result in Christian carols, etc.

The context in which all medieval Spanish lyrical born manifested the confluence between these two peoples, Hispanic and Hispanic-Muslim-Christian and Jewish elements in addition to constitute a cultural mosaic of mutual symbiosis and Berber influences. Without going into the order and flow of their interference behold in the deep flamenco roots and prosper centuries after similar way to the evolution of Romanesque and Spanish poetry generally occurs.

The evolution of zejels and jarchas we announce unquestionably a mixture of musical culture to microcompositivo model versicular and strophic flamenco, that is, flamenco drink much of its meaning and ways that source dela Andalusian music, as over time of other music.

Another important aspect in the relationship between music and flamenco Andalusian what is the primary role given to letters. In principle, the poem above its music composition, mode of sung poetry of Greek-Byzantine and medieval influence. The unit serves the same verse and music and manners transmission elements are similar in emotionality, expressiveness and orality that comes with subtle variations to this day with the shared stylistic dimensions, at bottom.

Overall, songs, romances, etc. Also they expressed after his expulsion, the Moorish oppression by tragic feelings and social resentments and it also assimilates tone flamenco, the oppressed working classes in general, the Roma.

Subsequently, the Nuba primitive emigrated from the hands of these expelled Moors, north Africa and the Middle East, which has been preserved in a quasi stagnation imperfect, is today a particularly interesting reference for those distant origins confront the current reality which it is the music and singing of Andalusia today.

Separate chapter deserve the study of musical instruments and their subsequent evolution, string instruments, percussion, etc. have remained, evolved and adapted to today’s new sensibilities with a close and visible in Malaga Verdiales Pandas in the evolution of flamenco guitar itself and the recovery of percussion instruments in the current flamenco example.

Add to this brief explanation of the importance of preserving this treasure of oral transmission that is flamenco, born of the substrate of the original peninsular music and valuable example of change over time lyrical, musical, sentimental and emotional feeling a people through these invisible pores of evolution has preserved and revitalized treasure inherited from our ancestors and wonderfully alive.

Asher Barrett
jasherbarrett@gmail.com


2019 PERFORMANCES

                 

Metamorphic Transformation

Observing metamorphic transformations in nature allows us to extrapolate that method to humans and the arts. That is to say, the foundational substance becomes a supporting substance retained in the new identity. These essential elements are absorbed, now invisible to the observer, while the transformed form creates a stunning awareness of the new.

Likewise, our compositions make use of a similar pattern of creative mutation, if you will. We begin with folk songs that poet Federico Garcia Lorca chose, rescued from oblivion, transcribed for the piano and performed in various venues. Following a trajectory of revealing hidden elements, we submit them to an unexpected metamorphic process. The melodic essences of the old songs are those that give musical meaning to different poems that Lorca wrote.

Additionally, in his short life, he created diverse artistic works, including poetry, music, and literature. He also created formidable works for the theater, while also embracing other mediums such as painting. His contemporaries and artistic collaborators included Joan Miro and Salvador Dali.

«Lorca in the Keys of Hands and Voice,” a concert conceived and presented by Adam Kent and Fernando Barros, is a musical innovation inspired by Lorca’s example. Lorca collected melodies from the Spanish folklore repertoire and transcribed them for the piano using two different concepts: 1) adapting the old melodies to various of his poem, as for example, ANDA JALEO to the poem «Preciosa y el Aire”; and 2) singing the old songs using the expressive, emotive characteristics inherent in flamenco music.

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