"Love Letter from King Tut-Ank-Amen" - Mahmoud Fadl
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- Artist:Mahmoud Fadl
- featured artist:Samy el Bably on TrumpetOriental
- release year:1998
- catalogue number PIR1257
Nubian percussion master Mahmoud Fadl has proved to be genius at giving odd twists to Egyptian sounds, spicing up traditional wedding music and adding a hip take to classics from the country's greatest diva, Umm Kalthum. Inspired by the poem "Love Letter to King Tut-Ank-Amen" by the great Cuban poetess Dulce María Loynaz. Mahmoud Fadl presents an instrumental collection of classic Cairo love songs. Now an album comprised of love letters to a long-dead Pharaoh might seem a bit out there, but Fadl delivers them with style and aplomb. The music comes from some of Egypt's most lauded composers, and the settings are traditional, classical Arab modes. But, as usual, Fadl tweaks the stately melodies and swooping strings, allowing for improvisation that makes a connection between classical Arab music and modern jazz. All this is powered by Fadl's own, sizzling percussion and the wonderful Samy El Bably on trumpet. When those two let go – which happens quite often – it's full of cool, exotic beauty. Not typical love songs, maybe, but why would a Pharaoh like Tut-Ank-Amen be ordinary?
" These may be popular love songs, but they are composed in classical Arabic scales. Generally the trumpet takes the lead lines and the strings chip in with imitative phrases linking the phrases together - the typical pattern in Arabic popular music. Fadl provides the rich percussive groove."Simon Broughton "World music 100 Essential CDs. The Rough Guide