The 4th Iranian Festival of Music Websites and Weblogs

The 4th Iranian Festival of Music Websites and Weblogs was held in Niavaran Cultural Center, in Tehran, Iran on Feb. 28th, 2015. The initiator of the festival was Sajjad Pourghanad, Iranian music writer, researcher, founder of the festival and Persian setar and tar player.

At the begenning of the program, the presenter of the last day of the festival, Younes Mahmoudi, came on the stage to invite Saeed Yaghoobian (Persian tar), Dr. Peyman Nasehpour (Azerbaijani dayereh), and Shayan Yazdizadeh (tonbak) to perform the Azerbaijani art music pieces on the stage. After this music performance, the clip specially made for the 4th Festival was presented. Then Mahmoudi invited Seyyed Abbas Sajjadi, the CEO of Niavaran Cultural Center to deliver his speech on the Center’s activities and the 4th Festival.

After Sajjadi’s speech, the Choir of Arasbaran Culture-House came on the stage to perform some pieces of Handel, conducted by Serjik Mirzaeian. After the performance of the Choir, Dr. Mohammad Reza Azadehfar came on the stage to give a speech as an agent of the Juries of 4th Festival.

After Azadehfar’s speech, Peyman Soltani (Persian tar), Mehdi Emami (vocals), and Shaahin Mohajeri (tonbak) gave a Persian art music performance. Then Shahram Saremi (Iranian kamancheh player and artistic director of Arasbaran Culture-House) was invited to come on the stage to be appreciated for his help to the previous annuals of Iranian Festivals of Music Websites and Weblogs by dedicating to him the Statue and Letter of Recognition of the Festival.

Then a couple of musicians and music researchers were invited to come on the stage to deliver the awards of winners listed as follows:

1. Music website winner: MusiceIranian.ir run by Ebrahim Molaie
2. Music weblog winner: Neyrizmusic.blogfa.com by Saeed Mostafizi

Winners of Research Articles: 1. Nasim Ahmadian 2. Jafar Goudarzi 3. Shaahin Mohajeri – Soudeh Mofidi

Winners of Journalistic Articles: 1. Vahid Eftekhar Hosseini 2. Hossein Salimi

Winners of Notes on Music: 1. Babak Valipour 2. Ali Najafi Maleki 3. Ali Sharifi

Winners of Music Critiques: 1. Saeed Yaghoobian 2. Farhoud Safarzadeh 3. Mohammad Javad Sahafi – Meysam Pourtajrishi

Other Winners of Festival include: Kamyar Salavati, Farshad Tavakoli, Mehdi Forouzian, Mohammad Khalilian, and Bita Yari.

The final part of the 4th Festival was the performance of Arghanoun Flute Ensemble conducted by Ebrahim Nazari. The Arghanoun Flute Ensemble performed some pieces such as “Ninay-va-Bi Nay”, a Lorestani folk song and “Raghs-e-Dayereh” composed by Heshmat Sanjari.

The website of this Iranian Festival for Music Websites and Weblogs is: MusicFestival.ir. This time, the juries for this competitive festival were Mohsen Ghanebasiri (Iranian an epistemologist, chemist, author and theorist on economy, culture, arts (cybernetics) and management), Shahram Saremi (Iranian kamancheh player), Dr. Mohammad Reza Azadehfar, Dr. Pirooz Arjmand, and Dr. Narges Zaker Jafari. Beside the helps of Shahram Saremi, one of the other musicians who also supported this festival was Dr. Mohammad Sarir, Iranian composer and pianist.

The Structure of Kurdistan Daf (II)

With its simple physical structure and captivating sound, the Daf never belonged to a particular culture or location, and every nation had different usages for this instrument considering their dominant customs and traditions.

The Structure of Kurdistan Daf (I)

Today, percussion instruments have such a high place in music that are an essential element of orchestras. This has attracted many people to this type of instrument with roots as old as the first humans. A historical study of music, shows that humans used the sound of these instruments to defend themselves against wild animals and, over time, for alerting each other, signaling their readiness and encouraging people for war, ritual ceremonies, dances, etc. in a manner that is still clearly visible in music and some ritual ceremonies.

From Past Days…

New Technique for Playing Classical Guitar (II)

When the author was working on the piece “Playing Love” by Ennio Morricone (from the legend of 1900), he realized a failure of the Lip Technique. Needing to play a chord in the 14th position of the guitar and in order to complete the harmony, it is necessary to play a harmonic note on the 7th or 5th position; it was not possible to touch the string to play this harmonic note, because the Lip Technique is used for getting the notes and not to touch the string and producing harmonic notes. Naturally, the only possible way to touch the string was to use the nose at the required position and playing the note with the right hand, and this was the best option the author found to how to play such harmonic notes, and where the Nose Technique was generated.

Polyphony in Iranian Music (V)

In addition to the above-mentioned, polyphony can be also formed when a melody is performed by several singers in different ambiances or different sound registers according to their physiologic abilities. An example of this has been performed in rituals of Khanqah of Ghaderi darawish of Mahabad[i].

From the Last Instrumentalist to the First Composer (I)

Music as an art has its own special history; emergence of a singer, of an instrumentalist and then the emergence of the strong character of a composer covers three significant phases of the art of music. With the emergence of composer which was simultaneous with the emergence of the language of music, this art managed to offer a domain for criticism for its composer; a procedure which led to a magnificent variety and evolution in musical production. Even though the conflicts between singers and instrumentalists have not met their end in the Iranian society and while singers can achieve high, instrumentalists have yet to play behind curtains . In a special era, with the efforts of musicians such as Ali Naghi Vaziri (1887-1979) and Rouhollah Khaleghi (1906-1965), glimmers of a composing era started to glow bearing fruit in Khaleghi’s achievement as Iran’s first professional composer. Khaleghi made his reputation as a composer while Vaziri deserved to pioneer this path. By then Vaziri was well-known as a Tar player.

Is the Iranian National Anthem a Copy? (II)

In response, it should be said that it is better for the national anthem of a country to use the musical material exclusive to that country; however, some problems might come up in doing so the most important of which include: lack of familiarity of other countries’ music performer with the concerned country’s specific music intervals and special musical technique; and secondly, the strangeness of that music to the foreign listener.

A Note on the Occasion of Houshang Zarif’s Demise

No introduction is needed when talking about the position of the late Houshang Zarif (1938-2020) in the Iranian music. His character and personality are so well-known among musicians that his name per se is a symbol and role model for the Iranian youth. “Becoming Houshang Zarif” is the dream of many young people who enter the world of music in Iran and many of whom retire regretting the realisation of this dream.

Henry Cowell: “Persian Set”

Persian Set: Four Movements for chamber orchestra: Moderato; Allegretto; Lento; Rondo

Henry Cowell, one of the most innovative American composers of the 20th century, was born in 1897. Cowell and his wife visited Iran in 1956 and stayed there the whole winter, upon the invitation by the Iranian Royal Family, when he composed his album “Persian Set” in four movements for chamber orchestra. His composition is expressive of the characteristic quality of the Persian or the Iranian music.

Kayvan Mirhadi and O.R.P Qaurtet

Establishing O.R.P. Quartet is Kayvan Mirhadi’s latest activity as a guitarist, composer and conductor of Kamerata Orchestra. Besides working with this Quartet, Mirhadi is busy these days recording and mixing some of his own works as well as some pieces by 20th century composers. O.R.P Quartet performed a concert in Rasht, Gilan Province in late May 2016 and offered a master class.

A Look at Ali Tajvidi’s Manifold Musical Activities (II)

Tajvidi thought of studying harmony and orchestration with Houshang Ostvar (who was eight years younger than him) at a time when he had gained a reputation among musicians. His humbleness, making him willing to kneel before the scholars at any age and position, became the key to his scientific success. After this period, Tajvidi made some of his works polyphonic, the most prominent of which is “Burn” set to a poem by Abdullah Ulfat. However, his ability to make his works polyphonic was not so great to make him self-sufficient; so he depended on musicians such as Farhad Fakhreddini, Fereydoun Naseri, Kambiz Roshanravan, Fereydoun Shahbazian and Morteza Hananeh for the arrangement of his compositions.

Gholam Reza Khan Minbashian: a pioneer in Iranian music (I)

Gholam Reza Khan Minbashian, a.k.a Salar-Mo’azez, was a pioneer in several domains in the history of the Iranian music. He is recognized as the first Iranian musician who was educated in classical music. He is also the first Iranian the score of whose works were published in Europe. He is the first Iranian to have launched courses on Western classical music and was also the first Iranian teacher of classical music. Moreover, he is the first founder of a string orchestra in Iran, the first author of the Iranian Radif which was available in oral form. Minbashian is also the first Iranian who studied music in Europe.

Illusion or Ingenuity?

Mohsen Renani in the preface of his book entitled “The Political Economy of nuclear conflict; an introduction to traversing the civilizations” writes: