A Blog from Amman, Jordan, Online Since 2004.

Amman Goes Jazz

I just got back from a concert/workshop called “Amman Goes Jazz”. LOL, I think half of the audience were the students of my department :)
The National Music Conservatory/Noor Al Hussein Foundation, Goethe Institute and the German Embassy presented a forum, workshops, jam sessions and the final concert which washeld at Zara Auditorium tonight. The concert included bands from Jordan, Syria, Palestine, and Lebanon.
It was excellent, I’m really impressed. There are so many Arab talents around waiting to be uncovered, and tonight was a great oppurtunity for some of these amazing talents to shine.
Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to stay through out the whole show, so I missed the last segment which included the Lebanese band.

A Syrian band called Mosaic were the openers, and they were really good. They blended so perfectly into their music, except for the drummer, who drummed too loud for the rest of the instruments thus getting on my nerves. The bass player was my favorite in the Syrian band; his solos were really fascinating, and he is so passionate about his cello it gave me shivers.
Next came a Jordanian player/singer called Yazan Al-Roosan(?), and darn, he sucked. His lyrics were so bad you couldn’t do anything but laugh. He started with singing about getting stopped by a cop and asked for his ID and license and stuff and how he got into trouble because he didn’t have them, then he critisized popular music like Haifa and Nancy, then he sung “Karate, Karate!” It was too silly, and a huge let down after how amazing the Syrian band were.
Fortunately for us Jordanians, the third band was also Jordanian, Sign of Thyme(?), and they were amazing. They had a beautiful jazzy mix of “oud”, acoustic guitar, and electric guitar. It was very oriental, and very different from anything you would ever hear. Their drummer is the cutest thing I’ve seen in ages, he gets so into his drumming and seems to forget everything happening around him.
I’d definitly buy their album.

The Palestinian band came after Sign of Thyme, and they were also good. At 16, their piano player was the youngest in the concert, which was a really nice change. It makes me happy to know that such talent comes out of a country so suffocated by occupation. Good luck to them.

The real star of the show though was a member of the Syrian band, a girl called Rasha. What can I say… WOW! Everyone in the hall was dumbfounded when she started singing, she just has the most captivating voice! It is so amazingly beautiful, so deep, and so rich. It is practically an instrument by its own right. It reminded me of the maddening-yet-utterly-beautiful Gaelic yodel of The Cranberries’ Zombie.
Rasha, you rock. I hope we will hear a lot more from you.
I took a few very dark(and very small) videos, but you can still hear the music in them, so if anyone is interested, I can send some to your GMails or through MSN Messenger.
LOL, it’s funny, but I wish Natasha was there.


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  1. That was long time ago..
    I played Guitar and Flute with the Palestinian band.. We had fun

  2. That was long time ago..
    I played Guitar and Flute with the Palestinian band.. We had fun
    Charlie Rishmawi

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