Various Artists

Classical Traditions

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On this outstanding sampler of the rich art musics of the region, the focus is on the Bukhara and Khokan (also called Ferkhara-Tashkent) traditions of Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, with supplementary examples of Darwaz and Uighur music. The classical shash-maqam (Bukhara) and chahar-maqam (Khokand) repertoires are represented, along with lighter classical fare and dance-like pieces. Most of the selections feature singers accompanied by one or more plucked or bowed lutes; there are several instrumental solos on the various lutes. The excellent notes are especially strong on the artists' biographies and their individual positions in the Central Asian musical scene.