Om Kalsoum had one of the great voices of the 20th century, which is one of the reasons why she is so revered in the world of Arabic music. Of course, with an artist so prolific, a "Classics" collection is going to be somewhat arbitrary, but The Classics is an excellent collection culled from the vaults of EMI Arabia. Kalsoum is backed by a traditional Middle Eastern ensemble featuring oud, percussion, and strings. This would be a fine place to start a collection of Middle Eastern pop music.
AllMusic Review by Sean Westergaard