Munir Bashir (Arabic: منير بشير)* was an Iraqi Assyrian musician and one of the most famous musicians in the Middle East during the 20th century and was considered to be the supreme master of the Arab maqamat scale system.
He created different styles of the Arabian short scaled lute, the oud. He was one of the first middle eastern instrumentalists known to Europe and America. Bashir’s music is distinguished by a novel style of improvisation that reflects his study of Indian and European tonal art in addition to oriental forms. Born in Iraq, he had to deal with numerous disruptions of violent coup attempts and multiple wars that the country went through. He would eventually exile to Europe and become noticeable first in eastern nations such as Hungary and Bulgaria.
...Especially in the field of soloistic improvisation (Arabic: taqsim) over the common scales (maqam, plural maqamat) in Arabian music, his colleagues considered him to be an unsurpassed master. It surely attributes to Bashir’s pioneering work, that nowadays oud-players are able to give solo-concerts all over the world.
...Munir Bashir died of heart failure in 1997 in Budapest at the age of 68, a short time before his planned departure to his Mexican tour. (Wikipedia)
A 1971 solo recital in Geneva, Switzerland. Bashir's masterful performance shines through on this somewhat primitive recording. 320 vinyl rip by yours truly*. You can find another great Munir Bachir LP at the ever-magnificent Anthems for The Nation of Luobaniya. Enjoy!
Download Link: Munir Bachir - Luth Solo "Oud" Recital A Geneve (Club du Disque Arabe 72505)
Les Artistes Arabes Associés
A1 Maqam Nahawend
A2 Maqam Rast
A3 Maqam Kourdi
A4 Maqam Hidjaz Kar
B1 La Voix De L'Orient (The Voice Of The Orient) / Variations
B2 Le Oud Fou (The Mad Oud)
B3 Hayra (Ziriab D'Hier Et D'Aujourd'hui)
B4 L'Orient En Andalousie (Sources De La Musique Espagnole)
*Would love to find an image of Munir Bachir's name in his native Syriac script. Wikipedia's Syriac text just isn't doing the trick.
**Folks, this might be my last post for a week or two- As I'm about to move to a new apartment. Too much to do. Moving is of those few circumstances where I'm inclined to curse my LPs for their heavy load. Wish me luck!