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Armenian Music - Still looking for identity !

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#21 Guest__*

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Posted 03 July 2000 - 08:20 AM

We definately need a modernization of Armenian music. It's long overdue. There is this band in LA called "Arshaluys" (I think), they have tried to modernize Armenian music but were pretty unsuccessful. It sounded too Pink Floydish. Besides, the roots of rock n roll and jazz lie in folk music. I think Armenian music has a great potential to modernize. When I took an Armenian music class at USC, one of the lectures was about modernization of Armenian music. Gayane jan, I don't think the music that Armenian youth is listening today, especially in Los Angeles is any art, it's totally junk. Non of these so called singers have a slightest talent to be called singers. They just make me laugh. Besides, we need a modern touch so our music can evolve. I agree with you that our folk music is pretty good, but we need to be in par with the world, and need to modernize our music. (I never thought you'd be the one defending traditions.)
Originally posted by Gayancho:

Ok, wait a minute...

who said we don't have a modern armenian sound???? a big part of being an armenian youth in america is listening to armenian music...it makes you more "armenian" in a way... besides, why do we need a "modern" feel to our music...our music is beautiful as it is...can you imagine yamane being sung by some rock group?!! come onnn!!

lol..janfedayi, yerevi miak hartsna vorum menk karoxenk hamadzaynvel )


[This message has been edited by alpha (edited July 03, 2000).]

#22 Guest__*

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Posted 03 July 2000 - 09:02 AM

HAyer jan yete n@katel ek verchin 7 tarineri @enatstkum iyo HAykakan Yerashtuyun@ ter e gtnum Amerikyan Shukayum / vertsnenk hents ink @ Jivan GApasyan / Mer HAykakan duduk@ Bavakanin lyin Taratsum uni Asxharhov mek , yete duk chgitek yes gitem Shabat@ 10 - 15 HAykakan Duduk em Vajarum Otarnerin . Haykakan duduki yev HAykakan Yerashtutyun CD / CSS.Kartsum ek sa Bavakan che VORPES SKIZB ??

#23 Guest__*

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Posted 05 July 2000 - 10:58 AM

Let me clarify my position a little

there's a time to dance to yes, even rabiz junk...and there's a time to sit back and be moved by our traditional songs..although completely separate, the two genres are a part of our identity (sidenote: they should stay separate)

i own both types of armenian music and i'll be the first to jump up and dance to say, tata.. but i believe i'm also the only armenian girl in our "little armenia" who drives around listening to songs about "Sasuntsiner" or "Mshetsiner" sung by an Armenian woman..lol..you should see the looks i get from armo rabiz dudes when they realize what music i'm listening to )...(they actually turn down their own music and listen to mine!!! )

lol..sorry for the digression

#24 Guest__*

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Posted 05 July 2000 - 11:06 PM

oh, one more thing...

alpha, i may be modern, but my soul is still very much armenian...i don't know how else to phrase it, for all "superior" education )

lol..kidding, kidding, don't take it to heart )


#25 Guest__*

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Posted 13 July 2000 - 02:57 AM

Gayane... totally right!
Traditional and Modern should stay seperate. Traditional will never go away, it musn't!
Modern music on the other hand is still in a primary phase. I know in Armenia they reject the modern Armenian with Arabic/Turkish influence because they say it unpurifies Armenian style but hey! what Armenian style? Tata doesn't sound too Armenian (only 10 sec in a song has Armenian) and lots of modern songs in Armenia sound like Russian, since when Russian influence is okay? I personally think that even though Armenians are strong nationalists they are blindly influenced by ROUSSASSTAN.
Am I right?

#26 Guest__*

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Posted 13 July 2000 - 04:16 AM

That's stupid, excuse me!
Our music doesn't have any Russian or Turkish influence!
And our modern music sounds just like every modern music in every country!
you don't even know how Russian music sounds, how can you judge???
Armenian music is Armenian music and nothing else!!!
And our modern composers would be very insulted by what you, ARMENIANS, think!
Even Aram Khachatrian wrote world known music that was based on traditional Armenian music!The base is always Armenian!
What you say is pure nonsense!

#27 Guest__*

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Posted 19 July 2000 - 11:43 PM


we do get carried away sometimes on certain topics, but this one doesn't warrant your heated response (in my opinion, of course)

#28 Guest__*

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Posted 29 August 2000 - 12:15 PM

I think the subject of Armenian music always was controversial. Let's refer to Eznik Koghbati' well known manuscript, where he says "when you listen to the music played outside the church walls, you just want to close your ears."

Admittedly, the primary mission of Komitas was cleaning the Armenian music up from foreign (meaning Kurdish, Persian, Arabic, Turkish) influences and demonstrating that there is such a thing as Armenian Melos.

Unfortunately, it seems to me that every-now-and-than, the Armenian music needs a major cleaning.

I would also join those who question the esthetical values or better to say claim absence of esthetical values in what we call modern Armenian music.

I don't think that a musical style can be born as a result of a desire to modernize or adapt an existing style. As a matter of fact, I think this desire only leads to endeavors the outcome of which is what we have in our hands today.

Years ago in California I couldn’t turn the TV on to watch Armenian programs (I believe not much has changed). The reason was that the music that they claimed to be Armenian was too insulting for my intelligence and national dignity. I could relate directly what Koghbatsi was complaining about.

I think asking for Armenian music is somewhat artificial. The music has to be just music. When Aram Khachaturyan was writing Gayane or Spartak, etc, I am sure he was not thinking of writing Armenian music, but rather as a music inspiring people, music that would satisfy the most critically oriented ear. It just happened that because he was good, and he was raised Armenian, his music, even written for a poem of Lermontov, has Armenian flavor. I think trying to create anything “Armenian” is doomed to failure. Just create music, and try to do the best job you can. If there is something like “Armenian” music, it will implicitly be reflected in your composition.

As far as the Turkish or Persian music is concerned, or their higher quality compared to the “Armenian Music,” I guess what I can say is they are just more authentic, in being more reflective of their national character or national ideals. I don’t think the type of music that we have today has anything to do with our ideals. As a matter of fact, that music is just a reflection of today’s identity – in Armenia, and in Diaspora. It is music of low expectations and low ideals. It has nothing to do with the bad life. Hardly the life of Armenians in Armenia and Diaspora is worse than the life of the slaves in the United States. But the slaves gave rise to jazz and blues, while our fellow Armenians have generated the garbage that is even shame to demonstrate. But the thing is that the habits take over. I remember when that type of music first appeared in Armenia, everybody was making fun of it. It seemed to be too unreal to take it serious. But bad habits have their way around. It has become much more widely spread. I think again, that it is reflective of the declined moral and ideals. Even the good people today find an excuse to “occasionally” to listen to that music.

Back to the subject. No need for a modern Armenian music. If the conditions are right, that music will let us know about its existence.

#29 Guest__*

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Posted 29 August 2000 - 12:40 PM

It’s truly informative to read your post about Armenian Music. Yet let me not agree with you about the need to modernize it. Even the music created by African slaves, Blues and Jazz, was modernized before becoming mainstream. Modernization by talented musicians will attract the necessary following, in order to keep on a quality work. The reason for such a dismal state of Armenian music is mainly economic. If one looks at recent successes of Tata or Nune, one immediately notices their sponsors. Sharm, who are extremely talented guys, sponsors Tata. Nune is sponsored by deep pocketed ARF. There are many talented singers and musicians in Armenia, lack of resources and the size of Armenian market prevents them from becoming mainstream. In order to create a following, especially among people from 18 to 35, that’s the group that spends most on music, we need modernization. Modernization will bring the necessary budget to take Armenian music to next step.

#30 Guest__*

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Posted 29 August 2000 - 01:42 PM

Alpha, I have heard some of the names you mention, but not their music, except, perhaps Nune. But I am not impressed. I remember in mid 80's the modern music in Armenia was picking up. Especially, we had uprising very talented jazz musicians. As much as I know, or I can guess, the living conditions for these and similar people would've been quite harsh in Armenia, and would expect their scattering around the world. In this sense, it probably is directly related to the economy.

[This message has been edited by MJ (edited August 29, 2000).]

#31 Guest__*

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Posted 30 August 2000 - 03:15 AM

MJ, somtimes hardship means more creativity and better arts, sometimes it doesn´t.

In Jazz, Datevik is a great name.

What I don´t really like is Middle Eastern Armenian music.

As to influences, one can´t help it. Culture is not a static concept, quite the contrary, it is a very dynamic one.

Some people fool themselves when they think of such concepts as purity in cultural terms. Maybe if you are from Iceland you would have only two major influences: Norwegian and Celt (Irish), and this is up to the XIX century.

But if you live in the crossroads or near it, impossible.

#32 Guest__*

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Posted 30 August 2000 - 06:17 AM

No doubt about the dynamics of the culture. It definitely evolves. If my notes have made an impression of denial of that fact, I am sorry. That's not what I have meant.

#33 Guest__*

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Posted 30 August 2000 - 07:27 AM


Not at all. My answer was directed to various posts.

#34 Guest__*

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Posted 10 September 2000 - 08:53 AM

Originally posted by farsisteve:
Amen brother! Turkish music is great, Tarkan's "simarik" is very popular right now in Mexico of all places. They play that song in every club and the video is shown constantly. Even recently the Spanish radio stations here in LA are playing the song! Unfortunately much modern Armenian music is a cheap knock-off of either Arabic or Turkish pop. Armenians need to pursue their own indigenous sound, there is no excuse as Armenia has a rich musical tradition, in many ways superior to that of the Turks.Also you know what I would like to see more of? Rock in Armenian and Farsi too, much like there is an explosion of Rock in Spanish. I know there are bands but they are ignored in favor of the synthesizer dance pop crap.

what is turkish music ?????????

WHO ARE THE TURKS ?????????????????????

#35 Guest__*

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Posted 10 September 2000 - 10:16 AM

Farsi go ahead and explain who are the Turks
Well I'll try to explain too.
turkey: a kind of bird popular during Christmas time!
turks: small turkeys

#36 Guest__*

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Posted 10 September 2000 - 07:29 PM

Who are the Turks? Ill tell you who they are. They are Armenians,Greeks,Kurds, Bulgarians,Albanians,Serbs,Russians,Lazes, Georgians who loath their real background, and pretend to have something in common with Mongolian slant eyed Uzbeks, Kazaks, Kirgiz! So no wonder "Turkish" music is good, it ain't Turkish! How many Turks I wonder have the Mongolian bluish spot upon birth? They should since they supposedly come from Central Asia. I doubt very many of them do. Hmmm funny, how many Uzbeks do you see with blue eyes? How many Chuvash have wavy or curly hair and bushy eyebrows? Real funny Turks, what happened? Could it be that because your nation is built on a lie?

#37 Guest__*

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Posted 14 September 2000 - 02:22 PM

I should quote that most of the old and probably new turkish songs are written by Armenian composers.

#38 Guest__*

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Posted 14 September 2000 - 04:28 PM

Which view of the Turkish nation will prevail in the histories still to be written?

Will Ambassador Henry Morgenthau be right in his assessment of Turkish culture?

He wrote "Such graces of civilization as the Turk has acquired in five centuries have practically all been taken from the subject peoples whom he so greatly despises. His religion comes from the Arabs; his language has acquired a certain literary value by borrowing certain Arabic and Persian elements; and his writing is Arabic. Constantinople's finest architectural monument, the Mosque of St. Sophia, was originally a Christian church, and all so-called Turkish architecture is derived from the Byzantine. The mechanism of business and industry has always rested in the hands of the subject peoples, Greeks, Jews, Armenians, and Arabs. The Turks have learned little of European art or science, they have established very few educational institutions, and illiteracy is the prevailing rule," he wrote early in the 20th Century.

Yet Mehmet, born in 1433 and the third son of the Sultan Murad, and who was to eventually conquer Constantinople, is said to have been fluent in Turkish, Arabic, Greek, Latin, Persian and Hebrew, and at the age of 19 organized the building of the castle of Rumeli Hisar, which still stands.

Which view of the Turkish nation will prevail? Will the Turks of history be seen as scholars and builders, or a nation of murderers?

As this century closes Turkey has developed a nation which is strong in political and military terms. Its largely-borrowed culture has taken on distinctive Turkish aspects, just as the United States takes in elements of the world's cultures and makes them uniquely its own.

But in failing to admit, other than individually, their responsibility for the Armenian genocide of the late 1800s and the killing which began again in 1915, the Turks reveal a cultural failing which even the Germans have overcome.

What would be the implications of admitting to what they have done? Would Armenia immediately demand a return of stolen lands? Would legal actions to recover financial losses be inititated? Would shame attach itself to the Turkish nation even more than the shame and indignity that exists now with the world knowing of the Armenian genocide?

I don't understand all of the ramifications. But for some reason or reasons, the strategy of Turkey is denial, even in the face of written and photographic evidence. Just as unrepentant Nazis deny the Holocaust, and just as many Americans deny the genocidal policies of their government in eradicating Native Americans, the Turks deny the Armenian genocide. All suffer a cultural failing, an inability to face realities, an inability to accept responsibility.

#39 Guest__*

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Posted 15 September 2000 - 09:53 AM

Alpha jan BAvakanin lav mejberum Kataretsir . Bravo .
Bolorit gareaparnern el jisht en , sakan IYS TOPICN E SXAL.
Armenian Music - Still looking for identity ?
Haykakan Yerashtutyun@ iyspes kochvats IDENTITY misht el unetsel e . kartsum em aveli jisht klini asel Hye Yeritasardnern en Nor Kam noranor Identity man galsi . qani vor shater@ chgiten te irenk ov en , vor mekn e irenst yerashtutyun@, vorn e ir yerkir@, yev n@patak@ ir ashxarh galu .
isk te turk@ inch uni kam chuni da indz chi hetaqrqrum ,
inchpes vor naxkinum em asel iydpisy azg yevyerkir indz hamar goyutyun chuni . ur mnats yerashtutyun yev yerger. .

#40 Guest__*

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Posted 18 September 2000 - 03:59 PM


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