There’s more to Iraq than chaos and conflict. There’s music to be heard.
- Choubi Choubi! Folk & Pop Sounds from Iraq
This collection of Iraqi music is from the intrepid Sublime Frequencies record label who have scoured the globe for obscure music often in its rawest form: field recordings, bootlegs, cassettes sold on street corners, and, if all else fails, directly off the radio.
- When the Soul is Settled: Music from Iraq
This recording of oud (a short-necked plucked lute) and percussion is on the Smithsonian Folkways label, the gold standard for folk and field recordings whether one is an ethnomusicologist or simply has adventurous ears.
Despite the ongoing violence, music is still being made in Iraq today such as the Iraqi National Symphony Orchestra in Baghdad (who just performed on May 21, 2008). And there’s even a heavy metal band from Iraq, now refugees, and the subject of a documentary.
In my next post, I’ll introduce you to music from other hot spots around the globe.