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cd cover Aman Aman
Música i cants sefardís d'Orient i Occident ()

Mara Aranda and Efrén López of the well-received Spanish ensemble L'ham de Foc have brought together a number of musicians to explore Sephardic music under the name of Amán Amán. They maintain their forward vision on these tracks, as they traverse Sephardic turf in Greece, Turkey, the Balkans and Spain.


  • Sien drahmas al día
  • La galana y el mar / Ajuar de novia galana (contrafacte)
  • El rey Nimrod
  • Los guisados de la berenjena
  • Durme / Bana Yücelerden seyreden dilber
  • La adúltera (Yo en estando)
  • La hermana cautiva (de las altas mares)
  • Los caminos de Sirkeci
  • Las compras del rabino / Alçàcik duvar üstü
  • Ansi, ansi / Que buena que fue la hora
  • Scalerica de oro
  • Con mucha lesensia
  • Si verías a la rana
  • Las casas de la boda
  • ¿Por qué lloras blanca niña? / Kyria yefefi

From the RootsWorld review:
"From Valencia, L'Ham de Foc approaches the Sephardic repertoire by turning east, exploring how the traditional repertoire changed as it moved from the Iberian Peninsula in the post-1492 diaspora, taking on new life in the exile communities of Sofia, Thessalonica, Istanbul, and Izmir. There is no shortage of contemporary Sephardic recordings, but the present work turns away from a certain slavish celebration of an imagined medieval multicultural sound toward a living if lesser-known Levantine tradition, complemented by instrumentation of the region (ud, tanbur, cümbüs, kopuz, santur, kemençe, various flutes, and percussion). Hence, alongside "Sien drahmas al día," the opening dance from Smyrna (a 9/8 karsilama rhythm divided in 2/2/2/3), or the hybrid "La galena y el mar" (one of many Sephardic wedding songs, a Salonika processional sung as the bride is led to her ritual bath, here with original lyrics over a Bulgarian melody), the early 20th-century Turkish curcuna (a 10/8 rhythm divided 3/2/2/3), or the Sofia lullaby "Durme," come more familiar Sephardic songs such as "El Rey Nimrod" and "Los guisados de la berenjena" (seven ways to prepare eggplant), albeit with a decidedly eastern modal makam feel. This is the spirit of Aman, Aman, a phrase-common to many eastern Mediterranean languages-that expresses surprise, longing, or lovesickness. Notes are in Ladino, Spanish, German, and English, with lyrics in Ladino." - Michael Stone

“Aman Aman” is a new project by the two leading members of the Catalan group L’Ham de Foc : multi-instrumentalist Efren Lopez and singer Mara Aranda. L’Ham de Foc are widely acclaimed for their 3 albums of traditional folk and early music. This new album is another remarkable example of how erudite musicological research can breathe fresh life into a tradition instead of reducing it to dry history. The tradition, in this case is of the Sephardic Jews, expelled from the Iberic Peninsula in 1492, and whose musical influence in the subsequent centuries, spread through the cultures of Greece, Turkey, Arabia, Bulgaria, and the whole Mediterranean area. Efren & Mara were keen to examine any written traditions, 78 recordings or living folk versions, but not to become restrictively ‘purist’ in their interpretations - allowing the nomadic, eclectic nature of sephardic music to continue to develop in their hands. The were joined by L’Ham du Foc multi-instrumentalist Diego Lopez, and ney player Christos Barbas, who had guested on the “Cor de Porc” CD in 2005; other guest musicians play cello, kanun, lyre, double bass, guitars & assorted percussion. The material covers rembetikos, karsilamas, wedding songs, hymns, lullabies, romantic ballads, and instrumental dances.

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