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"Muwashshah proves that good music is universal the album is marked by El Dins understated oud playing, warm vocals, and strong symphonic sense of melody." - MUSICHOUND WORLD
Arguably the most famous of all Arabic musicians, Hamza El Din hails from Nubia, now-underwater land of the Aswan High Dam in Northern Africa. His 1963 album on Vanguard, Music of Nubia, was the first recording of Afro-Arabic music to be distributed in the West. He is a titan of world music, an ambassador of Nubian culture, the founder of the modern Nubian music tradition, and the worlds greatest player of the oud (an Arabic lute-like instrument). Hamza El Din first started singing as a means to warn his people about the inevitable destruction of their land due to the High Dam. He spent years wandering and collecting traditional music. He later studied classical Arabic music, and then in Rome began working on a synthesis of Arabic, Nubian and Western music. When he was finished studying in Rome, the High Dam had been built and he was homeless. Since then, he has become a citizen of the world, traveling and playing on all continents, and eventually emigrating to the Bay Area in California. Muwashshah is a tribute to Ziryab, a legendary African slave who escaped from the court of Bagdad to become one of Arabic musics most important composers, and is one of El Dins most celebrated recordings, called "a triumph" by All Music Guide.