Friday, April 10, 2015

A-WA - Habib Galbi

It's the second holiday of Passover and I feel a bit disoriented. Today was a Friday though because of the holiday it felt like a Saturday-and tomorrow it's another Saturday though I'm guessing that with all of the Mimouna festivities it'll feel like a Friday. What better way to celebrate the Mimouna (other than looking at amusing pics of awkward politicians the next day) than with A WA? I know that the first is Moroccan and the second is Yemen but they both celebrate ethnic traditions which aren't always given a stage, and they're both perfect for the festive spring atmosphere.
I love how A WA isn't just a new take on traditional Yemenite music-they're a new take on traditional Yemenite music sung by women and they do so in an empowering yet subtle way. I really don't remember the last time I saw a group of women so harmonized on stage-what really adds charm is that there seems to be no ego struggle between the sisters and you can really tell that they're taking their mission of reviving women's Yemenite music quite seriously. The music may be light but the songs they are singing were sung by Yemenite women who didn't know how to read or write and singing was their only way to express their everyday distress. The songs were passed from generation to generation with each woman adding her own individual mark. This song is one of those and it was first recorded by Shlomo Moga'a in the early 60s, when the Yemenite Jews came to Israel. Zion Golan later made it famous with his version in the mid 80s and it's quite fascinating to compare both earlier versions with A WA's refreshing take on it, produced by Tomer Yosef of Balkan Beat Box. If you can't get enough of the sisters check out excellent footage from their single launch last week-it's not an exaggeration to say that they're one of the best acts in town and they're just getting better. Chag Sameach!

Love of my heart, my eyes
It is a wonder who has set you against me
He dared to eat but not be satisfied

And as the dawn rose
My love got upset and left running
My love got upset, o' people!, and I am left unknowing

Love my of heart, my eyes...

My love has made my eyes cry
He rose and left me
And there is no other love like him

Love of my heart, my eyes...

Love of my heart, my eyes
A year and a half has passed and he has not returned to me
O' people, he has left and driven me mad

Love of my heart, my eyes...

To whom can I bemoan that will understand me?
To whom can I cry that wil pity me?
Which of you will help me?

Love of my heart, my eyes...

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