Saturday, 26 May 2018

Abd es-Sadeq Cheqara (Shekara) (1931-1998) - Chekara con la Orquesta Tetuan - LP published 1984 in Spain

Here we start a series of music for the beautiful nights of Ramadan.

Abd es-Sadeq Cheqara was a great singer of not only classical Arabo Andalusian music but also of old folk and Sufi traditions of his home town Tetuan. At the same time he was a virtuoso violin and 'ud player. In Morocco many LPs, cassettes and CDs by him were published over several decades.
We discovered this LP only recently. Unfortunately the copy we bought a couple of months ago is not in perfect shape, but as it seems to be quite rare and the music is very beautiful we decided to post it.
This LP contains next to Arabo Andalusian music on the second half of side 2 some examples of folk music.
By the same artist we posted in 2014 a beautiful LP published in Morocco in the 1970s. See here. In 2011 we posted a cassette of a Sufi ceremony with an Arabo-Andalusian ensemble, which is probably under his direction. See here.

Wednesday, 23 May 2018

Darkawa - Zawiya Darqawiya fi Madh Khayr al-Baria - A Sufi ceremony - Cassette from Morocco

Here we present a cassette from Morocco with a Dhikr ceremony of the Darqawiyah, a well-known Tariqa in Morocco, a branch of the Shadhiliyah.
The title of the cassette means: "The Zawiya (convent, place in which Dhikr ceremonies take place) of the Darqawa in Praise of the Best of Creation." This hints at the singing of poems of praises of the Prophet Muhammad (SAWS). But this cassette also contains Dhikr.
As our blogger friend Tim Abdellah who runs the wonderful blog wrote in response to our request for help with the title of this cassette:
"Sometimes poems bearing this phrase ("في مدح خير البرية" (fi madh khayr albaria)) in the title are short, and contain a series of verses beginning or ending successively with each letter of the alphabet, like this:
and this
Some of them, however are much, much longer. It turns out that the famous poem known as Qasidat al-Burda is actually called al-Kawākib ad-Durrīya fī Madḥ Khayr al-Barīya (الكواكب الدرية في مدح خير البرية) "The Celestial Lights in Praise of the Best of Creation". (
I wonder whether your tape contains a poem that is specifically Darqawi in origin, or one that is in general circulation and performed here by some Darqawi brothers. In any case, I'm looking forward to hearing it!
The j-card does read juz' 4 (part 4) الجزء:4 (that means it is volume 4 of a series)
Also, the very fine print reads: تنسيق: عبد الرحيم العمراني which means something like "arranged by Abderrahim Amrani". Amrani is a moqaddem of the Fez Hamadcha, and the musical director of their group as well. So it appears that he has his hand in more than just Hamadcha music in Fez - the contact email listed on the j-card for this Darqawa tape looks like:"
Many many thanks for your very generous and very appreciated help, Tim.

We had posted in 2011 a Dhikr accompanied by Arabo-Andalusian music from a branch of the Darqawiyah. See here
Last year we posted a cassette of Sama' (Sufi singing) of the Alawiyah, a well-known Tariqa in Algeria, which branched off of the Darqawiyah at the beginning of last century. See here.
Over the years we also posted a good number of other cassettes of Sufi singing from Morocco. See under the label Morocco here on the right side.

For infos on the Darqawiyah see:

The letters (Rasail) of Shaikh ad-Darqawi exist in several English and especially French translations.

Our dear friend Danny brought this cassette from a trip to Morocco last year. Many thanks for sharing so generously.

Sidi Ali ibn Mawlay Tayyeb ibn Mawlay al-Arabi Darqawi, a grandson of Shaikh ad-Darqawi, who apparently was a follower of Shaikh al-Alawi.

Tuesday, 15 May 2018

Haj Abderrahman ben Moussa (1908-1997) - Complete Qur'an on 60 cassettes published in Morocco, probably in the late 1980s - First set: cassettes 1 to 30

We post here - to celebrate the holy month of Ramadan - a complete Qur'an on 60 cassettes, recited by the outstanding Moroccan Qari (reciter) Haj Abderrahmane ben Moussa. In 2011 we had posted the first and last volume of this series in mp3 format. We also posted over the years a series of six volumes from a different series. See here. Now we post all 60 cassettes in flac and (better) mp3 formats.

Haj Abderrahmane ben Moussa (Abdul Rahman Benmoussa) recited in an old style, based on so-called Andalusian melodies. His recitations had a very refined musical and contemplative beauty. In this he was truly outstanding. I never heard any other reciter reciting his way. Nowadays this way of reciting seems to have disappeared. I had once an Algerian friend staying in our house. When he saw these Qur'an cassettes, he asked me to put on one of the cassettes. When he heard it he was very touched and happy. He said that this was the kind of recitation he used to hear in his childhood and that he had not heard it since decades. This friend talked to me about the beauty of these so-called Andalusian melodies, which are used in Arabo-Andalusian music, but even more so in Sama', the singing of spiritual or mystical poems of the Sufis, and by Haj Abderrahmane ben Moussa in Qur'an recitation. These are only known in Morocco and Algeria. Today one hears them only in the circles of very traditional Sufi orders.

"His full name is Abdul Rahman bin Ahmed bin Mohammed bin al-Bashir Benmoussi Hamasani Hasnawi Salawi, born in the city of Salé on August 28, 1908. Abdurrahman Benmoussa grew up in Beit Alam, where his father, the scholar Ahmed Benmoussa, was a jurist and modernizer. The memorization of the Qur'an was directed by Sheikh Abdul Hadi Ateobi, as taught to a group of elders such as Mr. Ahmed bin Abdul Nabi and Sheikh Abu Shuaib Aldakali and Mohammed bin Arabi Alawi. For a while he was at the service of King Mohammed V. Haji Abdurrahman Benmoussa used to pray in Ramadan with the king, his sons and his clan. In the framework of the construction of the Mulawiya school, Muhammad V commissioned him to teach the then crown prince Hassan II. Al- Sadeq Ma'nino (the former director of the Moroccan TV) said: The more difficult things were for King Mohammed V and the conspiracies of colonialism affected him and brought him into a state of distress, he would call Professor Abdurrahman Benmoussi to sit beside him and recite the Qur'an and recite a collection of verses. When King Mohammed V was banished to Madagascar he returned to the city of Salé. People got to know his voice through national radio, and then they got to know his image through Moroccan television in the early 1960s, which he opened and sealed with verses from the Holy Quran."

Here a short documentary in Arabic:

Vol. 5 - flac
Vol. 5 - mp3

Vol. 6 - flac
Vol. 6 - mp3

Vol. 10 - flac
Vol. 10 - mp3

Vol. 11 - flac
Vol. 11 - mp3

Vol. 12 - mp3

Vol. 13 - flac
Vol. 13 - mp3

Vol. 14 - flac
Vol. 14 - mp3

Vol. 16 - flac
Vol. 16 - mp3

Vol. 17 - flac
Vol. 17 - mp3

Vol. 18 - flac
Vol. 18 - mp3

Vol. 19 - flac
Vol. 19 - mp3

Vol. 20 - flac
Vol. 20 - mp3

Vol. 21 - flac
Vol. 21 - mp3

Vol. 22 - flac
Vol. 22 - mp3

Vol. 23 - flac
Vol. 23 - mp3

Vol 24 -flac
Vol. 24 - mp3

Vol. 25 - flac
Vol. 25 - mp3

Vol. 26 - flac
Vol. 26 - mp3

Vol. 27 - flac
Vol. 27 - mp3

Vol. 28 - flac
Vol. 28 - mp3

Vol. 29 - flac
Vol. 29 - mp3

Vol. 30 - flac
Vol. 30 - mp3

The second set we will post in about a week or 10 days, insha'Allah.