Music of Algeria

This week we’re in the largest Mediterranean country, the largest African country, and the home of Rai, the music, not the bread, it’s the music of Algeria!



Sources: – Anthem – Andalusian orchestra, Tlemcen; Redha Benabdallah – Traditional Chaabi; algeriensunis channel – Newer Chaabi; GregLloydGroup channel – Kabyle; Matoub Lounès – Thissirth Nendama – Cheikha Remitti; RAKOUM MHA BENI SAF – Cheb Khaled; Botrjez – New Rai; Bled Musique DZ


Al-Deen, Hana Noor. “The Evolution of Rai Music” in Journal of Black Studies, Vol. 35, No. 5 (May., 2005), pp. 597-611 Published by: Sage Publications, Inc.

Davis, Ruth. “Traditional Arab Music Ensembles in Tunis: Modernizing Al-Turath in the Shadow of Egypt” in Asian Music, Vol. 28, No. 2 (Spring – Summer, 1997), pp. 73-108 Published by: University of Texas Press

Goodman, Jane. “Singers, Saints, and the Construction of Postcolonial Subjectivities in Algeria” in Ethos, Vol. 26, No. 2, Communicating Multiple Identities in Muslim Communities (Jun., 1998), pp. 204-228 Published by: Wiley on behalf of the American Anthropological Association

Orr, Christopher C. “Songs of Discontent: The Kabyle Voice in Post-Colonial Algeria”. Master Thesis, The Pennsylvania State University The Graduate School of Music.

Stokes, Marin: “Voices and Places: History, Repetition and the Musical Imagination” in The Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, Vol. 3, No. 4 (Dec., 1997), pp. 673-691 Published by: Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland

Weltman-Aron, Brigitte. “The Pedagogy of Colonial Algeria: Djebar, Cixous, Derrida” in Yale French Studies, No. 113, French Education: Fifty Years Later (2008), pp. 132- 146 Published by: Yale University Press



Music of Zambia



Sources: – Anthem song – Vimbuza dance – Vimbuza dance trance – Kalela Singing – Kalela Dance – Ching’ande Dance – WITCH Zamrock song – Kalandula song

Brelsford, Vernon. History and Customs of the Basala in The Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland, Vol. 65 (Jul. – Dec., 1935), pp. 205-215 Published by: Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland

Chilivumbo, A.B. Vimbuza or Mashawe: A Mystic Therapy in African Music Vol. 5, No. 2 (1972), pp. 6-9 Published by: International Library of African Music

Friedson, Steven M. Dancing Prophets: Musical Experience in Tumbuka Healing. University of Chicago Press, 1 Sep. 1996

Janzen, John M. ‘Doing Ngoma’: A Dominant Trope in African Religion and Healing from Journal of Religion in Africa, Vol. 21, Fasc. 4 (Nov., 1991), pp. 290-308 Published by: Brill



Photos: – Anthem,_Lower_Zambezi_(2508543521).jpg,_Zambia_at_Night.jpg,_administrative_divisions_-_en_-_colored.svg

Music of Albania

No McDonald’s, 700,000 concrete bunkers, and a tall blue alien. It’s the music of Albania.






Sources: – Anthem video – Frontier Warriors – Lullaby – Mountain Cry – Urban Lyric video – Toske Women’s song – Demir Zyko video – Laberia Polyphony – Curle Dyjare video – Saze video

Koco, Eno. Albanian Urban Lyric Song in the 1930s, Volume 1. Scarecrow Press, 2004

Lloyd, A.L. Albanian Folk Song in Folk Music Journal, Vol. 1, No. 4 (1968), pp. 205-222 Published by: English Folk Dance + Song Society

Mahony, Marinela. An Investigation of the Polyphonic Music of Albania.

Rapaj, Mario. Choral Music in Albania. file:///C:/Users/Jason%20Pockrus/Downloads/DPTX_2012_2_11410_0_392875_0_135252.pdf

Sheholli, Bahtir. Traditional and Contemporary Elements in Albanian Folk Music.

Tochka, Nicholas. To “Enlighten And Beautify”: Western Music and the Modern Project of Personhood in Albania, c. 1906–1924 from Ethnomusicology, Vol. 59, No. 3 (Fall 2015), pp. 398-420 Published by: University of Illinois Press




Music of Zimbabwe


Sources: – anthem song – Jerusarema/mbende video – Muchongoyo video – Mbira Kariga Mombe video – Bira ceremony video – Marimba video – Zimdancehall video – Chimurenga video – Tuku video – anthem score

Asante, Kariamu Welsh. The Jerusarema Dance of Zimbabwe in Journal of Black Studies, Vol. 15, No. 4, African and African-American Dance, Music, and Theatre (Jun., 1985), pp. 381-403 Published by: Sage Publications, Inc.

Berliner, Paul. The Poetic Song Texts Accompanying the Mbira Dzavadzimu in Ethnomusicology, Vol. 20, No. 3 (Sep., 1976), pp. 451-482 Published by: University of Illinois Press

Berliner, Paul. The Soul of Mbira: Music and Traditions of the Shona People of Zimbabwe. University of Chicago Press, 1 Jun. 1993

Chikowero, Moses. ‘Our People Father, They Haven’t Learned Yet’: Music and Postcolonial Identities in Zimbabwe, 1980-2000 from Journal of Southern African Studies, Vol. 34, No. 1 (Mar., 2008), pp. 145-160 Published by: Taylor & Francis, Ltd.

Jones, Claire. Shona Women Mbira Players: Gender, Tradition and Nation in Zimbabwe from Ethnomusicology Forum, Vol. 17, No. 1, ‘Sounds of Power’: Musical Instruments and Gender (Jun., 2008), pp. 125-149

Kaemmer, John E. Social Power and Music Change among the Shona in Ethnomusicology, Vol. 33, No. 1 (Winter, 1989), pp. 31-45 Published by: University of Illinois Press

Kauffman, Robert. Shona Urban Music and the Problem of Acculturation inYearbook of the International Folk Music Council, Vol. 4, 25th Anniversary Issue (1972), pp. 47-56 Published by: International Council for Traditional Music

Kauffman, Robert. Some Aspects of Aesthetics in the Shona Music of Rhodesia in Ethnomusicology, Vol. 13, No. 3 (Sep., 1969), pp. 507-511 Published by: University of Illinois Press

Kubik, Gerhard. Nsenga/Shona Harmonic Patterns and the San Heritage in Southern Africa in Ethnomusicology, Vol. 32, No. 2 (Spring – Summer, 1988), pp. 39-76 Published by: University of Illinois Press

Mensah, Atta Annan. Ndebele-Soli Bi-Musicality in Zambia from Yearbook of the International Folk Music Council, Vol. 2 (1970), pp. 108-120 Published by: International Council for Traditional Music

Perman, Tony. Dancing in Opposition: Muchongoyo, Emotion, and the Politics of Performance in Southeastern Zimbabwe from Ethnomusicology, Vol. 54, No. 3 (Fall 2010), pp. 425-451 Published by: University of Illinois Press

Rhodes, Willard. Music as an Agent of Political Expression in African Studies Bulletin, Vol. 5, No. 2, Arts, Human Behavior, and Africa (May, 1962), pp. 14-22 Published by: Cambridge University Press

Scannell, Paddy. Music, Radio and the Record Business in Zimbabwe Today from Popular Music, Vol. 20, No. 1 (Jan., 2001), pp. 13-27 Published by: Cambridge University Press

Vambe, Maurice Taonezvi. Popular Songs and Social Realities in Post-Independence Zimbabwe in African Studies Review, Vol. 43, No. 2 (Sep., 2000), pp. 73-86 Published by: Cambridge University Press

Williams, Linda F. Reflexive Ethnography: An Ethnomusicologist’s Experience as a Jazz Musician in Zimbabwe from Black Music Research Journal, Vol. 25, No. 1/2 (Spring – Fall, 2005), pp. 155-165 Published by: Center for Black Music Research – Columbia College Chicago and University of Illinois Press

Williams, Linda F. “Straight-Fashioned Melodies”: The Transatlantic Interplay of American Music in Zimbabwe from American Music, Vol. 15, No. 3 (Autumn, 1997), pp. 285-304 Published by: University of Illinois Press




Music of Afghanistan!

Sources: – Anthem Score – Pashto music with video examples – Attan video clip – Anthem soundclip – Tappa Clip – Charbetta Clip – Ghazal clip – Kiliwali Clip, Ahmad Zahir

Baily, John. A System of Modes Used in the Urban Music of Afghanistan. From Ethnomusicology, Vol. 25, No. 1 (Jan., 1981), pp. 1-39 Published by: University of Illinois Press on behalf of Society for Ethnomusicology
Baily, John. Cross-Cultural Perspectives in Popular Music: The Case of Afghanistan. From Popular Music, Vol. 1, Folk or Popular? Distinctions, Influences, Continuities (1981), pp. 105-122 Published by: Cambridge University Press
Baily, John. So near, so Far: Kabul’s Music in Exile. From Ethnomusicology Forum, Vol. 14, No. 2, Music and Identity in Central Asia (Nov., 2005), pp. 213-233 Published by: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. on behalf of the British Forum for Ethnomusicology
Baily, John. A Description of the Naqqarakhana of Herat, Afghanistan. From Asian Music, Vol. 11, No. 2 (1980), pp. 1-10 Published by: University of Texas Press
Banerjee, Sumanta. Unheard Melodies from Afghanistan. From Economic and Political Weekly, Vol. 37, No. 5, Money, Banking and Finance (Feb. 2- 8, 2002), pp. 380-381 Published by: Economic and Political Weekly
Hitchins, Keith. Neighboring Cultures: Central Asia, Afghanistan, China. From Iranian Studies, Vol. 31, No. 3/4, A Review of the “Encyclopaedia Iranica” (Summer- Autumn, 1998), pp. 571-582. Published by: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. on behalf of International Society of Iranian Studies
Hoerburger, Felix. Supplementary Jingling in the Instrumental Folk Music of Afghanistan. From Journal of the International Folk Music Council, Vol. 20 (1968), pp. 51-54 Published by: International Council for Traditional Music
Hyman, Anthony. Nationalism in Afghanistan. From International Journal of Middle East Studies, Vol. 34, No. 2, Special Issue: Nationalism and the Colonial Legacy in the Middle East and Central Asia (May, 2002), pp. 299-315 Published by: Cambridge University Press
Sakata, Hiromi Lorraine. Musicians Who Do Not Perform; Performers Who are Not Musicians: Indigenous Conceptions of being an Afghan Musician. From Asian Music, Vol. 17, No. 1 (Autumn – Winter, 1985), pp. 132-142 Published by: University of Texas Press
Sarmast, Ahmad. The “Naghma-ye Chārtuk” of Afghanistan: A New Perspective on the Origin of a Solo Instrumental Genre. From Asian Music, Vol. 38, No. 2 (Summer – Autumn, 2007), pp. 97-114 Published by: University of Texas Press
Slobin, Mark. Music and the Structure of Town Life in Northern Afghanistan. From Ethnomusicology, Vol. 14, No. 3 (Sep., 1970), pp. 450-458 Published by: University of Illinois Press on behalf of Society for Ethnomusicology
Sultanova, Razia. Female Celebrations in Uzbekistan and Afghanistan: The Power of Cosmology in Musical Rites. From Yearbook for Traditional Music, Vol. 40 (2008), pp. 8-20 Published by: International Council for Traditional Music

Renaissance: Afghan National Symphony Orchestra

Insurgents Lay Down Weapons
Dj Besho

Sia, Scales, and Microtones: How many notes are there?

How many music notes exist? Well the range of human hearing is between 20hrz and 20khz, though as much as 15Hz to 28kHz is not unheard of. Now, we know that sound frequency doubles with each octave, so if we start with the lowest C within human hearing and keep doubling the frequency until we get to the highest C in human hearing, we get 10 octaves, and we know each octave contains 12 notes…so how many notes are there? Well, it’s a bit more complicated than that?

Adventures by A Himitsu
Creative Commons — Attribution 3.0 Unported— CC BY 3.0…
Music provided by Audio Library

Cullen, Richard. African Music in Seventeenth-Century Jamaica: Cultural Transit and Transition in The William and Mary Quarterly, Vol. 50, No. 4 (Oct., 1993), pp. 700-726 (Accessed via Jstor);idno=bbp2372.1995.115 – measuring glissandos – Fibonacci and music chart – scales in European folk music – Mathematical origins of scales – scales in different cultures – cents to hertz calculator – music and Fibonacci – frequencies video – slendro scale – pelog scale – Phrygian dominant scale – baganda music – pitch in Indian music – Arabic scales – Raga – Indian music intervals – wiki entry on scales – turkish musical intervals – just noticeable difference – interference frequencies (beats) – cents – scale based on combination tones

Fibonacci Spiral

Music of Australia!

Aboriginal music, the Bee Gees, Dame Jean Sutherland…it’s Australia!

Running Through the Forrest: Doug Maxwell/Media Right Productions


Songlines: How Indigenous Australians Use Music to Mark Geography – gumleaf clip

Is this the world’s most unusual musical instrument or just one of them?

Aboriginal Art,_Bush_at_Yuin_Station,_Western_Australia,_24_Oct._2010_-_Flickr_-_PhillipC.jpg,_1912.jpg’s_Theatre,_Perth_1933_audience.jpg
Sydney Symphony Orchestra,_vivid_Sydey.JPG,_2008.JPG

Mystery Music Ep. 4

This is Mystery Music, the series that introduces you to three new musical styles, musical cultures, and musical people from around the world. As you watch, don’t forget to play along down in the comment section, try to guess what you’re listening to, before the big reveal at the end!






Into Uncertainty – Jay Man – OurMusicBox

— Spoilers —
# 1 Potlatch Song
Sources: – Song clip’wakw&f=false – Book on Kwakiutl culture – Book on Kwakiutl Music – Wiki potlach entry – wiki Kwakiutl entry – wiki Kwakiutl music entry

Tsimshian Copper,_by_Edward_Curtis.jpg

# 2 “The Love Express”
Sources: – Video clip – Wiki entry Pongsri Woranuch – Wiki entry Luk thung – CNN article, Luk thung


# 3 Al-Bar’ah
Sources: – Video Clip – wiki entry on Bedouin – Unesco information on Al-Bar’ah

Bedouin Tent

5 Instruments that Seem Easy, but are Actually Really Hard


Not every instrument requires years of practice to master. But some instruments are deceptively difficult. Like these 5 instruments that seem easy, but are actually difficult.






Say Yeah – Topher Mohr and Alex Elena:

Photos: by roger jones
Horn Luggers
Bruce Broughton (b. 1945): Tuba Concerto Number 3, Opus 26 - Tyler Schwirian, Tuba
2014 Tuba Christmas - Fort Worth’s_Symphony_No_4_in_Charlotte,_North_Carolina.jpg
[Man playing the tuba.]
Glass harp maestro
Glass armonica, played by Dean Shostak,_assigned_to_the_U.S._Pacific_Fleet_Band,_plays_the_cymbals_during_the_joint-service_rehea.jpg
Conductor - Frederik Magle conducting a symphony orchestra 10

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