Shanbehzadeh Ensemble: Iranian Dance Music


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Set List

  • "Ney Tofti"
  • "Chardastamal"
  • "Bandri"
  • "Shaki"
  • "Sharvel"

At New York City's 2009 globalFEST, festivities began on an otherworldly note in Webster Hall's Marlin Room, when the Iranian father-son team Shanbehzadeh Ensemble unfurled a mesmerizing set of what might be called the hidden Afro-Persian tradition.

Hailing from the south of Iran, and tracing ancestry to Zanzibar in East Africa, the Shanbehzadeh family upholds a tradition that blends Sufi trance ritual and Persian and Arabic idioms. Saeid Shanbehzadeh sang, played a flute and danced writhingly around his overtone-rich goatskin bagpipe. Looking on in a fixed gaze, his 15-year-old son Naghib churned out hypnotic rhythms on two hand drums. It was the most transfixing performance of the night.

Originally recorded Jan. 11, 2009, at globalFEST.

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