Azari Beluci     Gilan      Lori   Khorasan     Kurdi Musica del sud Turkmen
Per sentire la musica scaricate:


Designs, masonries and miniatures belonging to the pre-Islamic history of Iran all indicate Iranians' interest

and taste in music. In the post-islamic era, too, despite some opposition which made music lose its former

success, this art survived. The survival of music in the Safavid era can be found in Chehel Sotun palace and

the music chamber of Ali Qapu Monument in Isfahan.

Iran's music is an amalgamation of tunes and melodies which have been created in the course of centuries in

Iran and have evolved along with other aspects of the Iranian life. They refelct the moral characteristics, as

well as political, social events and geographical features of a country with an ancient history. The subtlety and

profundity of Iranian music leads man to reflection and deep thought and takes him to a celestial world.

Iranian music includes the following branches:

1- The pre-islamic music (the music of ancient Iranian tribes such as, Bakhtyari, Kordi, Lori, etc.)

2- The post-Islamic music:a)Maghami (mystic) music; This music includes epic music, lyric music for

marriage, birthday and other happy occasions, and elegiac music for mournful occasions.

b) Radif music which includes the Dastgahs(modes) of Traditional music.

In the contemporary era, Iranian music includes three branches; the two above-mentioned groups in addition

to a third one which is Iran's national music. This branch covers the traditional melodies of the two above

groups, but with a classic rendition.

According to the new classiffication of Iranian Awaz (songs) and modes, which has been set since a century

ago, Iran's traditional singing and music has been divided into 12 groups. The seven groups which are wider

and more independent are called Dastgah (mode) and the other five groups which are not independent and

have been derived from the Dastgahs or modes are called Awaz (a group of melodies with the same gamut.)

So, Iran's present traditional music is only a remainder of the former 12 Maghams (modes) and what we have

today is a very small part of the Iranian traditional music. The seven main Dastgahs (modes) and the five

Awaz groups have several pieces (gushe) which are now the models of the contemporary musicians and

singers. The number of these pieces (gushes) is said to be 228. The varoius and well-known Radifs (Iranian

classical music) of the masters of the 100-year old Iranian traditional music such as Agha Hosein Gholi, Mirza

Abdollah, Darvish Khan, and Saba follow the same order.

The Dastgahs (modes) and Awazes (melodies) in Iran's Traditional Music.

The seven main Dastgahs or modes are: Shoor, Mahoor, Homayoon, Segah, Chahargah, Nava, and Rast Panjgah. The five Awazes or melodies are: Isfahan, Abou Ata, Bayat-e-Tork, Afshari and Dashti.

The Components of Dastgah and Awaz

In order to perform a Dastgah or Awaz, a special order must be followed and that is; prelude, Awaz, Tasnif

(song) and Reng (dance tune). The late Darvish Khan innovated and added Pishdaramad (what comes before

the prelude) and Chahar Mezrab to this order.

Iran's Folklore Melodies

The late Khaleghi said in this regard, " One of the valuable sources of music in every country is the music and

melodies played and sung by the rural people who live in villages far from the cities. And since their music and

songs have been less influenced by the urban people, they are more natural and original and are closer to the

country's ancient and authentic music. Collecting such music not only preserves it, but also gives us more

information about a country and the way its people live." As Iran has different tribes with different cultures, its

folklore music enjoys a vast variety, both in the songs and the music. For instance, the music of Gilan,

Azarbaijan, Khorasan, Kordestan, Shiraz, and Baluchistan have different melodies and accents. Iran's

folklore music has two forms: 1)- Local melodies which are sung by one person or by a group. 2)- Local

dances which are accompanied by native musical instruments.

Iran's local melodies are one of the richest, most beautiful and most various among the folklore melodies in

the world. These melodies reflect the thoughts, lives, and nature of the people who have created them. They

are one of the rich cultural sources of Iran and can be the best inspiration for our musicians to compose

scientific music.  

Musical Instruments

Iran's musical instruments have been of immense importance since ancient times.

Around a hundred years ago, Iran's music was gradually separated from songs and followed its own way

Iranian musicians and composers masterted the Iranian music and made innovations in this regard but, on the

whole, Iran's instrumental music, has two main parts: 1)- solo which is based on traditional music and


2)- Group playing, either small or large groups with solo or chorus.


Solo is highly significant in oriental music and this can be related to the eastern philosophy and mysticism and

making a connection with the spiritual world. The eastern musician, in his own sense, is engaged in some sort

of worship, especially in his solitude.

Group Playing

Group playing became more common in Iran since the time of Nasereddin Shah the Qajar king. It was both in

the form of traditional music and instruments and martial music and western instruments which were

introduced in Iran by Monsieur Loumer (the French music teacher who had been invited to Iran to teach at

Darolphonoon school) later, group playing became more common and with western musical instruments

joining the Iranian ones and the playing of Iranian pieces on western instruments, it further prospered.

The oldest Iranian musical instruments are the ney (the Iranian flute) and the tambourine. The following are

the different kinds of Iranian musical instruments generally classified:

Wind Instruments

The ney is the oldest instrument in this group. It is a tube made of cane with seven joints and six knots. The

ney is among Iran's rural instruments and is usually played in all parts of Iran.

Another Iranian wind instrument is Sorna (an oboe-like Iranian instrument) which is common all over Iran andis of two types:Bakhtyari and Azarbaijani. In Iran, the Sorna is usually accompanied by the Dohol or the

naghareh (a drum-like Iranian instrument). This instrument is played at different occasions according to the

particular region of the country. In Iran's Kordestan, the dohol and the sorna are played at mourning

ceremonies while in the north, the sorna is played along with the performance of ropewalkers and in West

Azarbaijan, the villagers play the Sorna in their marriage ceremonies along with wood dancing.

The Korna is an ancient and historical instrument which is made and played differently in various provinces of

Iran. The main types of the Korna (an Iranian instrument of the sorna family) are those in the north of Iran,

Gilan and Mashhad. The Korna is mostly played in Kordestan and Azarbaijan.

The Bagpipe: It is mostly used in the south of Iran. In some parts of Iran, it is called "Khiknai". It is also played

in some parts of Azarbaijan.

String Instruments

One of the oldest string instruments is Kamancheh (an Iranian violin-like instrument resting on the ground

during the performance). This instrument can be used well both in solo and in group performance.

Kamancheh is a national musical instrument which is played in all the provinces of Iran, but is mostly common

among Turkmen and Turk tribes.

- The barbat (a harp-like Iranian instrument): this is an instrument from the family of limited string instruments.

It is also called Al-e-Oud or Lout. Its body is like a pear divided lengthwise into two parts. It has a big body and

a short neck which, in earlier times, used to have three strings.

The rabab: This instrument has four parts: a melon-shaped body, middle, neck, and head. The strings of the

rabab used to be made of the sheep bowel, but now they are made of nylon threads. Its plectrum is made of

chicken feather. This instrument is mainly rural and is mostly played in Khorasan and also in some parts of

Baluchistan and Sistan.

The tar: It is one of the original Iranian string instruments. It has a multi-part body and six strings. Other

musical instruments of the tar family are the Dotar and the Setar. The dotar is usually played in Turkmen

Sahra and Khorasan.  

Musical Percussion Instruments

The famous Iranian percussion instruments are the dohol, the dayereh, the drum and the Tonbak.

Dohol: It is a musical percussion instrument consisting of a hollow cylindrical body with a diameter of around

one meter and a height of 25 to 30 centimeters. Both ends of the cylinder are covered with a tightly stretched

skin. the dohol is played with two sticks, one of which is like a walking stick and the other one is a thin twig. The

dohol is a rural instrument which usually accompanies the sorna and is mostly played in Fars, Baluchistan and

Kordestan province.

Dayereh(Tambourine): This percussion instrument consists of a wooden circle on one side of which, there is a

tightly strectched skin. It is struck with fingers of the two hands. The Dayereh is commonly used in urban

areas rather than rural and usually accompanies another musical instrument. Presently, the Dayereh is

mostly played in Azarbaijan.

Drum: It is another percussion instrument which is smaller than the dohol and is played with two sticks. In

most parts of Iran, it is usually used in mourning ceremonies.

Tonbak: The tonbak is a percussion instrument made of wood (usually walnut wood). It consists of two parts:

the upper part is a cylinder covered by skin and the lower part is the neck of the tonbak which has a wide, open

mouth. It is played by the fingers and the skillful player performs artistic subtleties on it.

String Percussion Instruments

The unique Iranian musical instrument in this group is the santir. It consists of a trapezoid wooden box over

which 72 white (high) and yellow (bass) strings have been stretched. It has two wooden plectrums. The santir

is an instrument which can be played both solo and in group and it is played in all parts of Iran  

 Gilan and Talesh Music 

" Rang-e Gilaki "

In this region, music depicts the life of a people who live in the woods, love nature, and lead a simple and easy

life, Gilan music is mostly in the form of "shoor", and its songs are mostly in the form of "sashti" and rarely

"chahargah" and "shooshtari"; they abound in splendid and expressive scenes, picturing the green and fertile

land, woods, farms, and paddy fields of Gilan.

Vocal music is mainly rooted in the east of Gilan, that is, in the mountainous area of this part of the country.

In Gilan, instrumental music is generally played on special occasions and ceremonies, and the instruments

which are used are the "laleh" (the shepherds' reed), "sorna", and "naghareh".

The Gilan "reezmaghan" includes the divans, the ditties, and the tunes which ae mostly sung by the women;

these get their subjects from the real life of the people living in this region, and they are sung by themselves

and handed down by word of mouth from generation to generation.

Talesh Music

This music belongs to the northwestern part of Gilan, especially around the cities of Rezvanshahr, Masal,

Shanderman, Asalem, and Hashtpar. Talesh music takes its form from a popular song called "dastoon",

which is instrumental as well. These songs are extremely sad and melancholic, and they deeply affect the


Imam Zadeh Gholam Rasul

In the eastern sections of Chabahar, a high dome building is located which belongs to the Timurid era. The

Imamzadeh has been built in the western section of the yard on a plate which is one meter above the ground.

The main entrance of the Imam zadeh is located in the middle of the western section, the surface of its wall

appears extremely beautiful with the annexation of vaults with stucco ornamentations in the form of juxtapose

circles above the vaults. This building was built during the Seljuk era 1038 -1194, and its walls were painted

during the Safavid dynasty 1499 - 1723.

  Kurdistan Music

" Golneshan"

Kurdistan music appears in three countries: Iran, Turkey, and Iraq. For this reason, and for several other

reasons, it has taken the particular traits and attributes of each area where it appears. In spite of the

technological advances and the modern way of life, this music has still preserved parts of its original and

ancient tunes and melodies.

Kurdistan music falls into two major caterories: religious and nonreligious. The religious tunes belong to Sufi

groups (groups of muslim mystics), and they are performed as a part of special rituals in monasteries.

Another form of music which is very popular in most parts of Kurdistan is Kurdish ditties and dance music

performed by intruments like " dozaleh", "narmenay", "sorna", "shemshal", and "dohol". Music and dance go

hand in hand with one another; as a matter of fact, just like the melodies and tunes in this region, Kurdish

dances directly feflect the life of the people of Kurdistan. At times a group of men, at times a group of women,

and at thimes both men and women gather in groups and dance to these popular tunes.  

The music of the South Coast of Iran

" Havar havar"

For historical and geographical reasons, the music of this region has been largely influenced by border

countries like India and the Persian Gulf countries as well as the migration of the Africans to this area; as a

matter of fact, the greatest influence comes from African music. A strong proof for this is the presence of

dramatic, ritualistic, and mythological elements in this music. The music of the south coast of Iran is

absolutely rhythmic and mostly vocal.  

Khorasan Music  

"Naneh Golmohammad"

Due to the vastness of land, diversity of ethnic groups, and a tumultous past, Khorasan music appears in a

wide variety of forms. For this reason, we have divided the music of this region into two major categories: the

music of the north of Khorasan (including the cities of Bojnurd, Quchan, Shirvan, and Dargaz), and the music

of the west and center of Khorasan (including the cities of Torbat-e-Jam, Taybad, Khaf, Neishabur, and

Sabzevar.) The music in this region is undoubtedly the richest throughout the whole country.  

Lorestan, Bakhtiari & Fars Music 

" Daieh daieh"

Music is an indispenable part of life in Lorestan, too; as a matter of fact, it is present in many ceremonies and

rituals such as wedding and " hennabandan" ceremonies, revelries and festivities, periods of mourning and

burials, and even at the time of work. The music of this region falls into two main categories: ritualistic and


Ritualistic and Mourning Music

In Lorestan region, especially in the country, the mourning rigual has been performed with music, the " sorna",

and the "dohol" since many years ago; even today, music is still an essential part of the ritual. Among the

songs which are sung in the mourning ritual one can mention " sahari" and " pakotali".

Nonritualistic music (Songs and Dances)

Unlike other regions in Iran, this kind of music lacks the element of love and devotion in Lorestan; it is mainly

epic and heroic in this region. Most of the Lorestani ditties and songs express the bravery and gallantry of the

tribe's heroes.  

Azarbaijan Music 

" Oshari "

Proceeding with a strong and galloping rhythm, Azarbaijan music has an epic and heroic quality both in from

and in content. This music is quite stirring and lyrical, abounding in elements of folklore; it is played

passionately and enthusiastically in many traditional ceremonies in this region, such as wedding ceremonies,

" hennabandan," etc.

Azarbaijan Folk or Asheghi Music

This music is deeply rooted in the rural life and ancient cultural traditions of Azarbaijan people, and it is

considered as folk music. " Asheghi" music has been popular in this region since long ago, and the songs

have been transmitted by word of mouth from one " ashegh" to another; thus, they have been preserved

through the years. This music is known as the chief root and source of contemporary Azarbaijan music.

Azarbaijan Rural or Radifi Music

Although this music is deeply rooted in " asheghi" music, it follows special principles, tone, structure, and

combination of instruments. I personally believe that Azarbaijan rural music is in fact urban in nature, and it

has a great deal of teatures in common with the traditional " radifi" music.

Azarbaijan Orchestral Music

This kind of music is not so old, and it has been written and performed in various forms during the recent

years. Among these forms are the opera, the symphony, the concerto, the fantasy, and the ditties.  

Turkmen Music 

Ghazal-e Nader (Menar-e Kalleha)

Turkmen music is sad and melancholic and at the same time so effective, appealing, and tempestuous. This

music is extremely primitive, and one may consider it as a sort of simple and untainted music. The history of

Turkmen music dates back to the migration of the "Aghoozes", the first Turkmen people, from China to

Transoxiana and the east coast of the Caspian Sea. Among these migrants there were wise men and masters

of music known as " ozans". Ozans were the forefathers of the Turkmen " bakhshees" of today.  

Sistan va Baluchestan Music 

Mast-e Ghalandar

Music has played a major role in the lives of the people in this region since long ago. It is present in all aspects

of their lives: in birth and death, in joy and sorrow, and even in curing diseases. Balouchestan music is

certainly influenced by west Indian music, and it is divided into the two groups, instrumental and vocal. There

are different kinds of this music:

Likoo and Zahirook, Mootak, Mir Ghanbar, Sepat, Laroo and Sheshgani, Liioo and Gooat (Gooati).

Source: HASHT BEHESHT, Iranian folk music Mahur Cultural- Artistic Institue- Hossein Hamidi 1996