Fes festival celebrates world's mystical music

June 27, 2012

By Catalina Maria Johnson

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This week on our Global Notes segment we’re heading to Fés, Morocco, site of the 18th edition of the Sacred Music Festival. I just got back from the ancient Moroccan city.

The Festival's theme this year was to "re-enchant the world," in tribute to the great Persian poet Omar al Khayyam. The festival's offerings focused on spiritual poetry made song, in order to "harness hope and glimpse beyond a disenchanted world" and affirm the right of all people to "the quest for beauty and the intangible richness of it all."

Jerome McDonnell and I will check out the beautiful poetic music of Iranian sisters Mahsa and Marjan Vahdat, full of melancholy and longing; the intertwined richness of Guinean storyteller Mory Djely Kouyaté's voice and French artist Jean Phillippe Rykiel's piano playing with a selection from their Tinkiso recording.

Then we’ll check out the  driving energy of Moroccan songstress and poetess Cherifa's voice; and the eerie beauty of Bjork's falsetto singing about the moon, from her Biophilia project which she also presented at the Sacred Music Fest.

Come along for the ride.

Track list:

"Golden Straws of Wheat" - Mahsa and Marjan Vahdat

"Moriba Kaba" -Mory Djely Kouyate and Jean Philippe Rykiel

"Isul Isul Umarge Nsh Awadigi" -Cherifa

"Moon" - Bjork