June 17, 2024


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Rabih Abou-Khalil is an oud player and composer: Video

17.08. – Happy Birthday !!! Rabih Abou-Khalil (born on 1957 in Lebanon) is an oud player and composer.

Life: – Rabih Abou-Khalil grew up in Beirut and moved to Munich, Germany during the civil war in 1978. He lives part-time in Munich and part-time in the South of France with his wife.

Albums: – In his first CD release for the ECM company, Nafas (1988), largely traditional Arabic elements are to the fore, although a combination of drums of different national origin signals the eclecticism to come. In Al-Jadida and Blue Camel (1992), the former with alto saxophonist Sonny Fortune and the latter with alto saxophonist Charlie Mariano and flugelhorn player Kenny Wheeler, Turkish influence comes to the fore, in the form of complex time signatures (like 11/4 for the composition “Sahara”). Classical Turkish metres like 10/8 (phrased as 3+2+2+3), are found widely in Abou-Khalil’s opus (“Nightfall” on Between Dusk and Dawn, “Ziriab” on Blue Camel, “After Dinner” on Tarab, and “On a Bus ” on Yara). In recent years mixtures of these metres have emerged, setting new standards in complexity while retaining freshness, wit and the jazz value of swing.

Nafas and Tarab make use of the ney, the Turkish end-blown flute. 1995’s Arabian Waltz featured Abou-Khalil’s compositions for string quartet (performed by the Balanescu Quartet), along with oud, tuba (or serpent), and frame drums.

Morton’s Foot (2004) brings in Luciano Biondini on accordion and Sardinian singer Gavino Murgia whose bass vocals evoke Tibetan throat singing to create a bizarre, exotic blend of European and Eastern traditions.

Journey to the Centre of an Egg (2005) features a trio of oud, piano (Joachim Kühn, who doubles on alto saxophone) and drums.

In 2008, Abou-Khalil released an album entitled “Em Português” (“In Portuguese”), where he mixes Fado with Arabic music, with the participation of the fadista Ricardo Ribeiro.

Visions of Music: – Rabih Abou-Khalil hosted the television series Visions of Music. This 13-part documentary series produced by EuroArts Entertainment set out to explore the blending of jazz with traditional music (Caribbean salsa, Brazilian samba, Argentine tango, French musette, Spanish flamenco, Jewish klezmer, New Orleans R&B and Mississippi blues, as well as West African, South African, Indian and Middle Eastern music) through historical footage and interviews of musicians (by Abou-Khalil). The music of the TV-series was released on the album Visions of Music.

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