Music and Traditions of the Arabian Peninsula provides a pioneering overview of folk and traditional urban music, along with dance and rituals, of Saudi Arabia and the Upper Gulf States of Kuwait, Bahrain, and Qatar.
The nineteen chapters introduce variegated regions and subcultures and their rich and dynamic musical arts, many of which heretofore have been unknown beyond local communities.
The book contains insightful descriptions of genres, instruments, poetry, and performance practices of the desert heartland (Najd), the Arabian/Persian Gulf shores, the great western cities including Makkah and Medinah, the southwestern mountains, and the hot Red Sea coast. Musical customs of distinctive groups such as Bedouin, seafarers, and regional women are explored.
The book is packaged with an audio CD and almost 200 images including a full color photo essay, numerous music transcriptions, a glossary with over 400 specialized terms, and original Arabic script alongside key words to assist with further research.
It provides a much-needed introduction and organizational structure for the diverse and complex musical arts of the region.