November 1, 2013 6:53 pm

Abd Al-Hayy Hilmi: An Anthology 1857-1912

Capricious diva’s voice – cajoling and improvisatory – shines out of the occasional lacquer crackle

Amar, the Lebanon-based Arabic Music And Research Foundation, is rescuing and digitising the earliest recordings of Arabic music, performances caught on fragile 78s.

Abd Al-Hayy Hilmi is well worth preserving: a capricious diva, who sang women’s songs as well as men’s, he died young of excessive drinking after a sea turtle feast. His voice, cajoling and improvisatory, shines out of the occasional lacquer crackle.

Abd Al-Hayy Hilmi

An Anthology 1857-1912


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