Samira Tawfik

Ya Hala Bildayf

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Categorizing Middle Eastern music by country can be tricky. Tewfik is Lebanese. But she is renowned as a very fine singer in "Bedouin" style, which means a certain power and simplicity, more robust and straightahead than Umm Kulthum or (in her very different way) Fairuz, and the briskly boisterous drumming of the desert Bedouin. All in all, it's a style somewhere between the Levant and the Gulf, most closely associated with Jordan. Anyway, this is dynamite stuff.