Phase 5: Iranian singer and Swedish traditional Flutes (Spring 2016)
The well-known Iranian traditional singer Masha Vadat took part in a recording session at Kulturkirken Jakob (church) in Oslo, responding to tunes from the source, Kirsten Bråten Berg. The approach now was a bit different since we had sent the files to Vadat before the session so she had time to prepare responses. In this session we wanted to explore the possibilites between the Persian vocal tradition and the stev tradition of Setesdal. Vadat responded a capella immediately after hearing the specific tune played to connect emotionally to the source, even though she had prepared a more structured response. It was structured in the sense of chosing a specific traditional Persian tune. Each take of a tune was different since the ornamentations, length of melodic phrases, and mood varied, as they were rooted in different emotions. This way of recording whole takes differs from a pop production in which one often aims for a fixed, ideal take and then replaces small audio sections in order to optimise it.
Listen to Masha in Guds Godhet and Gamlestev
The Swedish flautist and traditional nordic flutes player Jonas Simonsen was provided with the source material and he selected and prepared the tunes he wanted to respond to, which included many of the harding fiddle tunes by Gunnar Stubseid, and some from Berg. The timing of the harding fiddle tunes is challenging to make immediate responses to, as we learned from previous sessions in Nepal and other countries. As Simonsen is, to a certain extent, familiar with the Nordic traditional styles, his understanding of the material provides a more in-depth response. Even so, to follow a specific individual rhythm is challenging, since each traditional musician has his or her own interpretation of one tune. It was therefore not a given that the session would work out. In this session we also recorded the Jordanian-Palestinian Çumbus and Oud player Ahmad Al Khatib, who made immediate responses.
Listen to Jonas playing Skuldalsbruri together with the source Gunnar Stubseid and Ahmad Khatib improvising on the tune Fanten.