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Iraq's classical and gypsy music traditions

Andy meets Qassim al-Sultan, one of Iraq's leading pop stars whose songs praise Saddam as a national hero. He also explores the Iraq's little-known gypsy community.

Andy's Sony Award-winning two-part documentary on music in Iraq. He meets Qassim al-Sultan, one of Iraq's leading pop stars whose songs praise Saddam as a national hero. He also explores the wilder sounds of Iraq's little-known gypsy community, and searches the pirate record shops for CDs by Kenny Rogers.

Available now

1 hour

Clip

Music and featured items

  • Tom Petty and Ilhram Al Madfai

    Andy Kershaw listens to Tom Petty and Ilhram Al Madfai

    Duration: 06:53

  • Music Played

    • Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers

      Unknown

      • Unknown.
    • Ilham al-Madfai

      Khuttar

  • Andy Kershaw in Bagdad

    Andy Kershaw finds out why there is no shortage of goods in the Bagdad market

    Duration: 05:21

  • Quassim Al Sultan

    Dr Darwish introduces Quassim Al Sultan

    Duration: 06:54

  • Music Played

    • Qassim Al Sultan

      Unknown

  • Andy interviews Qassim Al Sultan

    Andy interviews young Iraqi pop star Qassim Al Sultan

    Duration: 05:15

  • Music Played

    • Umm Kulthum

      Unknown

  • Qassim Al Sultan talks about patriotism

    Qassim Al Sultan tells Andy about his loyalty to Iraq

    Duration: 04:45

  • Music Played

    • Qassim Al Sultan

      A Praise Song for Saddam Hussein.

  • Qassim Al Sultan on sad songs

    Qassim Al Sultan tells Andy about the Iraqi tendency for sad songs

    Duration: 03:48

  • Music Played

    • Unknown Iraqi song

      Unknown

  • Andy at a record shop in Baghdad

    Andy at a record shop in Baghdad where they copy and sell pirate music

    Duration: 04:29

  • Music Played

    • Kenny Rogers

      Unknown

  • Andy Kershaw meets Dr. Ali Abdullah

    Andy Kershaw meets the DG of music and arts in the Ministry of Culture

    Duration: 03:10

  • Andy tries to record Kurdish Musicians

    Andy seeks permission to record Kurdish musicians, but instead gets a duo of non-Kurds

    Duration: 04:32

  • Music Played

    • Unknown - Traditional Kurdish music

    • Unknown - Kurdish song smuggled from Iraq to Iran.

  • Andy meet Iraqi Gypsies

    Andy in the outskirts of Baghdad meeting Iraqi Gypsies.

    Duration: 02:48

  • Music Played

    • Sahar Al Basri

      Iraqi Gypsy love song

      • BBC recording on location.
  • Andy with gypsy singer Sahar al Basri

    Andy speaks with gypsy female singer Sahar al Basri about the tradition of women singing.

    Duration: 08:12

  • Music Played

    • Sahar Al Basri

      Iraqi Gypsy song about hopeless love.

      • BBC recording on location.

Broadcasts

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