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Persian Classical Music
Musighi-ye Dastgaahi-ye Iran

The DoveSong.com in cooperation with the Nassehpoor Family of Tehran is pleased to provide all peoples of the world with this page of important and rare Persian Art Music. For the first time, these great treasures of Persian Art Music are being made available, transcribed to MP3 format by Pooyan Nassehpoor from very rare recordings.

Together the DoveSong.com and the Nassehpoor Family dedicate this page to our brothers and sisters in all lands, that may we learn to love and understand each other through an understanding of our music and culture.

The classical music (also known as art music) of Iran is a very old and very important tradition. You may learn more about it by visiting the links in the DoveSong Text Library for Persian Music.

#1: Zelli (Aavaaz-e Abu'ataa) 
Rezaa-Gholi Mirzaa-Zelli (1906 – 1945), vocalist and master of Persian radif repertoire was one of the best masters of Persian vocal music. He studied Persian vocal music under the training of Abol-Hassan Eghbaal (one of the greatest masters of Persian vocal music) and Aaref Ghazvini (social activist and one of the greatest tasnif composers in Iran). Zelli played concerts and recorded some pieces of his voice accompanied by instrumentalists such as Moshir-Homaayun Shahrdaar (pianist), Abol-Hassan Sabaa (violin). He passed away at the age of 38.

#2: Zarpanje (Dastgaah-e Maahur)
Yahyaa (Haarun) Zarpanje, Jewish tar player, was born in Tehran, Iran (Persia), about 1897. His father, Rabi’ was a singer and daayere (Persian frame drum) player. His brother, Musaa, was also tar player. Yahyaa started playing tar during his childhood with his brother, Musaa, and then he became the student of the very famous tar and setar player, Darvish Khaan and Aaghaa Hossein-Gholi, the greatest tar player and master of radif repertoire. He was called Yahyaa Kolang (Kolang literally means pick!) by Darvish Khaan because his tar plectrums were very strong and powerful. Yahyaa Zarpanje was very serious practicing tar and everyday he used to play for many hours. He made some trips to Esfahaan, Rasht and Shiraaz (some important cities of Iran) and performed some concerts there, and people loved his music. Fortunately, he recorded some of his tar pieces on gramophone disks. He passed away at the age of 35.

#3 - Haaig (Aavaaz-e Esfahaan first side)
#4 - Haaig (Aavaaz-e Esfahaan second side)
Haaig is an Armenian Kamaanche player and in this recording Saashaa Taarkhaaniyaan has accompanied him with Armenian tar on the first side. It is guessed that this record was recorded in the 1930's.

#5 - Ghamar (Aavaaz-e Abu'ataa, Daraamad) 
#6 - Ghamar (Aavaaz-e Abu'ataa, Hejaaz)
Ghamar-ol-Moluk Vaziri, the most famous vocalist of Persian art music, was born in 1905. In childhood she lost her mother while her father had died too, so her grandmother became her guardian. Her grandmother, Molla-Kheyr-on-Nessaa (titled to Eftekhaar-oz-Zaakerin), was singer of the Rozekhaani ceremonies (religious ceremony) and Ghamar accompanied her and participated in the ceremonies. This was her first acquaintance with the Persian vocal music of the Rozekhaani genre. Their house was in the Sangalaj district of Tehran. 

When Ghamar's grandmother went to Karbalaa on pilgrimage of Emaam Hossein's shrine; she stayed at the house of her cousin (the wife of Majd-os-Sanaaye') where musical gatherings (Mahfel-e-Musighi) were held, and great masters of Persian music such as Darvish Khaan (very famous master of tar and setar), Rokn-ed-Din Khaan Mokhtaari (composer and master of violin), Haaji Khaan Eyn-od-Dole (very famous master of tonbak) and Shaah-zaadeh Hessaam-os-Saltane (multi-instrumentalist) were playing. Through this, she became more acquainted with Persian music and she was invited in a wedding ceremony where the great master of tar, Mortezaa Neydaavud was invited too. 

When she sang in the wedding ceremonies privately, Ostaad Neydaavud played tar and asked her to sing again and she sang again and the Ostaad loved her voice and invited her to attend his class in order to learn the radif repertoire of Persian music. She went to his class and very soon she became one of the best singers of Iran. Their first concert was at the salon of the Grand Hotel about 1924. Then again their second concert was at the Palace Cinema located in the Laalezaar Street of Tehran. 

So she became more famous and was acquainted with famous poets and writers of her time. Gradually she recorded many gramophone disks and performed many concerts with the tar of her master and colleague Ostaad Neydaavud and she became more and more famous. What money that Ghamar earned she shared among the poor people and when she passed away in August 5, 1959, she was poor.

Music by the Nassehpoor Ensemble

Nasrollah Nassehpoor (Dastgaah-e Maahur)
This piece, tasnif-e Ze Man Negaaram, was sung by Nasrollah Nasehpoor in 1983 accompanied by Mohammad Reza Lotfi
(setar) and Nasser Farhangfar (tonbak). Ze Man Negaaram was created by Darvish Khaan in "Dastgaah-e Maahur" that was sung by other vocalists like Ghamar and etc.

Parham Nassehpoor (Dastgaah-e Chahaargaah)
We would like to make available contemporary performances. This is a piece performed by Parham Nassehpoor playing tar and accompanied by Peyman Nasehpour's tonbak. The rhythm is in six beats.

Pooyan Nassehpoor Santoor Solo
The santoor is similar to the hammered dulcimer of the western world. In this short selection, we hear Pooyan Nassehpoor accompanied by his brother Peyman playing the tonbak.

- > Visit the Persian Section of the DoveSong Text Library

Kemancha Solo Video

Oud and Barbat Website

Thanks to the Nassehpoor Ensemble of Tehran, Iran for co-developing the Persian Sections of the DoveSong Text and MP3 libraries. You may find out more about them by visiting their web pages:

Pooyan Nassehpoor Santoor

Peyman Nassehpoor Tonbak, Ghaval and Daf

Parham Nassehpoor Tar, Azeri Tar, Setar and Kamancheh

The Nassehpoor Ensemble

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