Some years ago the Tropenmuseum invited Behnam Samani, one of the Iranian percussion masters living in Europe, to come over and give us a crash course in playing percussion instruments of various regions of Iran. The instruments were collected for an exhibition about Iran and all its cultures.
Samani lamented the fact that Iran was so rich in different cultures, each with their own music and instruments, but young people had no idea about all this cultural wealth. A young musician was more likely to study the Indian table than the Gilaki Naghare.
In only one decade things have changed a bit. Some musicians are visiting far of regions to study with old masters and collect local melodies and rythms. This isn’t new, comparable projects have been undertaken in the past. What is new is the lively mix that’s created by the musicians. A mix fun and lively enough nut just to show off the diversity of the music, but to capture the attention of a new generation. Just listen to this Kurdish track played by my favorite current band Rastak. Doesn’t this make you want to move and shake?