Wednesday , 25 May 2022

Traditional Music genres of the Iranian World

PayvandNews – Music and songs transferred orally among various Iranian tribes and peoples is an invaluable inheritance which should be known in order to be properly preserved. Iranian local music also called regional music according to some sources include the music of micro-cultures classified under Iranian or Persian Culture. This report, is based on a book titled: General Musical Knowledge by Mohammad Reza Azadehfar.

Musical cultures within Political Boundaries of Iran

Various regions of Shiraz and other parts of the Iranian Province of Fars together with Qashqaee music make up a large part of Iranian culture in the central part of present Iran. Among these tribes, Qashqaee dances and Sabounati rhythms are better known. Music of Lur tribes include eastern and central parts of Zagros region and consist of the music of nomadic and settled down tribes. Music plays a vital part in all their ceremonies from wedding to burial. This zone is located entirely within the present political boundaries of Iran.

Iranian Music cultures heard outside Iranian Political boundaries

Or The Music of the Iranian World
Music of Turkish speaking people known as Azari music, performed in Iranian Provinces of Eastern and Western Azarbaijans, Ardebil, the present Republic of Azarbaijan, and in some regions of eastern parts of Turkey is well-known as Ashiq music among cultural experts.

file photo: Iran’s Regional Music Festival in Tehran, May 2011
Music of Kurdish people or Kurdi Music is performed in various regions of western parts of Iran, southern parts of Turkey, north of Iraq and various regions of Syria. Music occupies a lofty place in the life of Kurdish peoples too.

On the other hand, Khuzavi is a music culture performed in addition to the present Iranian Province of Khuzestan, also in parts of Basra in Iraq and parts of Kuwait. The music related to the shores of the Persian Gulf include southern provinces of Iran and small countries of the south of Persian Gulf. The music of this zone has prominent qualities in relation to rhythm, manifested in particular in Bushehri Music.

Music of eastern south regions of Iran is a part of a great music culture also called the music of the north of Subcontinent is performed in addition to eastern south parts of Iran and south of Pakistan, in northern provinces of India as well. The music of this region has fundamental differences with other regions, the most important of which is the use of Raga in the structure of melodies.

file photo: Iran’s Regional Music Festival in Tehran, May 2011
One of the largest cultural zones of Iran is the part called the Great Khorasan including Razavi Khorasan and parts of the norther Khorasan. It extends to some northern parts of Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and certain other regions of the Central Asia. One or a few cities of this region has been considered as the main pole of the music of Great Khorasan during various Iranian historical eras. Turkmen music culture extending to various parts of northern Khorasan, Golestan Province and large parts of the present Turkmenistan. The musical instrument Dotar or Chogur is very famous in this region. Turkmen songs have characteristic qualities granting a unique feature to this genre of music.

Mazani and Gilani music performed in the two Iranian Provinces of Mazandaran and Gilan extends to countries around the Caspian Sea and some parts of other provinces located in the north of Alborz Mountainous range. Music plays a significant role in this region and is performed by local musical instruments.

There is a great variety in songs, melodies and dances played in these regions covering the area from the east to the west shores of the Caspian Sea.

Note: Iranian World is the late Shahriar Adl’s expression referring to countries of the old Persian Empire still practicing its great culture like the present Iranian people.