Wednesday, July 12, 2017

The Wedding Singer: Omar Souleyman and "Tawwalt El Gheba"

A Sunni Arab wedding musician who is influenced by all kinds of musical styles brings us the random tune for today. Omar Souleyman is from northeast Syria, and started his career as a wedding singer. He has released an astonishing 500 or so studio and live albums, eighty percent of which were recorded at weddings and given to the bride and groom. His styles include Kurdish, Ashuri, Arabic, Turkish and Iraqi influences from the peoples who live in and around his native area. He has performed in Sweden, at the Nobel Peace Prize Concert in Norway, at Bonnaroo in Tennessee, and at the Roskilde Festival in Denmark among other places. He also remixed three versions of the Björk song Crystalline, from her 2011 album Biophilia, all of which were included on the second disc of her Crystalline series. This song, Tawwalt El Gheba, can be found on Omar Souleyman's 2015 album Bahdeni Nami.

Listen to songs like this and more on the KUNM Global Music Show every Monday night from 10 pm - 1 am Mountain Standard Time. Live streaming, program information and the two-week digital archive can be found at