Egyptian Rai [1994]

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Kurt Keefner
Egyptian percussionist Hossam Ramzy is perhaps best known in the West as a purveyor of "belly dance" music, but he has a long and varied career as a musician in Egypt as well as in the West where he played jazz. The term "rai" is a reference to a movement across many Islamic countries to update traditional music and make it more accessible; Egyptian Rai is an attempt to bring together disparate elements both from Ramzy's life and from the region as a whole. The current album thus covers a lot of ground. Take the piece "Othrak Ma-ak Othrak": Like many traditional Arabic pieces, it opens with a long solo for oud lute but soon percussion and even a trumpet and an accordion ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Kurt Keefner
Egyptian percussionist Hossam Ramzy is perhaps best known in the West as a purveyor of "belly dance" music, but he has a long and varied career as a musician in Egypt as well as in the West where he played jazz. The term "rai" is a reference to a movement across many Islamic countries to update traditional music and make it more accessible; Egyptian Rai is an attempt to bring together disparate elements both from Ramzy's life and from the region as a whole. The current album thus covers a lot of ground. Take the piece "Othrak Ma-ak Othrak": Like many traditional Arabic pieces, it opens with a long solo for oud lute but soon percussion and even a trumpet and an accordion enter. The resulting exchanges, building on short phrases, are as much jazz as they are traditional Arabic music; they develop a nice groove. That two such diverse musical styles can be blended has been proved repeatedly by such musicians as Rabih Abou-Khalil. The sound is generally leaner and more varied than Ramzy's "belly dance" efforts, with fewer strings and less use of synthesizer, but still instrumental. The track "Wah Wah," with its funky bass and bang-on-a-can percussion opening, is one of several "party songs" on the album. While Ramzy is always somewhat limited by his material, Egyptian Rai is a very good example of how two musical traditions can be fused without degrading either. Good fun.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 6/20/1994
  • Label: Arc Music
  • UPC: 743037113229
  • Catalog Number: 1132
  • Sales rank: 357,269

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Gani Lasmar (6:36)
  2. 2 Othrak Ma-Ak Othrak (7:15)
  3. 3 El-Hawzi (4:22)
  4. 4 El Ataba Gazaz (6:15)
  5. 5 Wah Wah (3:03)
  6. 6 Eddalla Ya Aris (7:18)
  7. 7 Mawwal el-Oshaa (6:11)
  8. 8 The World Is My Oyster (3:34)
  9. 9 The Star Collector (3:44)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Hossam Ramzy Primary Artist, Percussion, Recorder
Mostafa Sax Keyboards, Alto Saxophone
Dave Knowles Recorder
Ali Mohammed Flute, Nay
Walid Fayed Mohammed Fayed Bass, Keyboards
Farouk Mohammed Hassan Accordion, Quarter Tone Accordion
Aziz Ben Salam Flute, Nay
Abdulla Abu Sheffa Violin
Ihab Tutu Violin
Mike Day Recorder
Michael England Keyboards
Bahaa Abdulla Recorder
Samy El Bably Trumpet
Bashir Abdel 'Aal Recorder, Nay
Technical Credits
Klaus Gerlach Artwork, Layout Typography
Hossam Ramzy Engineer, Liner Notes, Text
Dave Knowles Engineer
Mark McQuade Artwork, Layout Typography
Mike Day Engineer
Bahaa Abdulla Engineer
Bashir Abdel 'Aal Engineer
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