Central Asian Music

Central Asia has long been a crossroads for the exchange of musical styles and instruments from East to West and West to East as well as the centre of great empires. Music from this region has been a cradle of civilisation, in which various nations – Sogdians, Iranians, Kucheans, Greeks, Turanians, Huns, Mongols, Uzbek and Uighur – followed one another or combined, and gave rise to prestigious cultures. Each of the nationalities has a rich heritage of folk songs. Most songs of the Kyrgyz and Kazakhs reflect their nomadic background and deal with sheep, horses and hunting while those of the Uzbeks are based on the settlers’ way of life – agriculture and craftsmanship.

The Musical Instruments of Central Asia
The Music of Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan Turkmenistan, Tajikistan and Kazakstan
Play your own Uzbekistan Music Quicktime Music Mixer
The sounds of The Musical Nomad Journey Quicktime Musical Mixer

On our voyage across Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan travelling east, we will be searching for the musicians who have inherited the ancient traditions of Central Asia. Their sound world includes a panorama of musical styles. At one extreme is the Shashmaqam, the repertoire of the great courts of Bukhara, whose complexity calls for the interpretative skills of professional musicians and at the other extreme folk songs accessible to everybody. The complex sounds of Uzbekistan become more and more spiritual as you travel further east toward the uncharted Altai mountain range. Despite the “Russification” that they underwent, these countries were able to preserve the deep emotional traditions of their music.

  1. No comments yet.

You must be logged in to post a comment.