Archive for the Music Category

Salawat on the Prophet (asking God to Bless the Prophet Muhammad)

Posted in Music, People, Religion with tags on August 28, 2008 by Sarah Kate Kramer

Walking home on a Wednesday night in Rabat we heard from a few blocks away the sound of a party (assumed to be either a wedding or a baby naming ceremony). A group of men are singing amdah, religious songs praising the qualities of the Prophet Muhammad and asking God to bless him. The sound is coming from an apartment building where several apartments are being used to house the party guests. This clip was taped on the sidewalk outside the building.

Rote learning: a chant

Posted in Daily Life, Music, Religion, Street Sounds with tags , on March 31, 2008 by Sarah Kate Kramer

Memorization of the Qur’an is an important and traditional way of learning the holy text, practicing Islam, and an act that is greatly celebrated upon completion. For better or worse, in Morocco, the technique of memorization has been extended into secular education, and students in the majority of Moroccan classrooms study a variety of subjects using the a rote memorization technique. Below you can hear elementary students singing as they learn.

Songs and ululation recorded in the Rif Mountains

Posted in Music with tags on February 17, 2008 by Sarah Kate Kramer

These singers live up in the Rif mountains above Chefchauen. They sing and ululate as they work. Excuse the sound quality–the microphone couldn’t handle the volume!

A Siidna Mohammed:

A song incorporating call and response:

A request:

In this recording, the women are singing as they scrub a carpet, listen for the sounds of brushes and water:

Wedding Songs and Ululation

Posted in Music, Religion with tags on February 17, 2008 by Sarah Kate Kramer


Moroccan weddings are musical (shwiya deafening) events. These recordings are from two weddings that were recently in the Fes Medina.

A song sung by a professional band that was hired for the event:

Spontaneous ululation by female guests, a common practice at Moroccan weddings:

Men–guests–singing, while waiting for dinner to be served:

Two songs recorded at what we believe to have been at a party celebrating the birth of a baby

Posted in Music, Religion with tags on January 21, 2008 by Sarah Kate Kramer

These songs were heard from an apartment next door to the party–the celebrations were so boisterous that they came through loud and clear.

1. A group singing madih, which are songs extolling the virtues of the Prophet Muhammad. This madih includes the line: “what are you but the best of creation?

2. A song in which the singer is giving “shout outs” to people attending the party.

Kids singing French and Arabic Songs on Eid

Posted in Music with tags on January 14, 2008 by Sarah Kate Kramer