Salah Ammo, Electronic World Music
The Syrian Kurdish musician Salah Ammo has become an integral part of the austrian music scene since 2014 known for experimenting on the edge of World-, Classical- and Jazzmusic including projects with “Wiener Symphoniker” and “ORF Radio- Symphonie Orchester”. In 2017 he founded Dabke Dilan, in which he presents a mesmerizing beat-driven glimpse of Syria`s modern folkloric dance music featuring a variety of acoustic and electronic instrumentalists. Since early 2019 the studio works are shaped by keyboardist Rizan Said, known for creating the sound of Omar Souleyman, and austrian producer Moritz Scharf alias Aramboa.
Dabke Dilan`s music was mainly inspired by “Oriental Electronic Sha’bi Style” where the music is shaped by fast rhythms and oriental synthesizer-sounds. Now they re-arrange Sha’bi as club music creating a unified musical language and making the term electronic world music a bridge between traditional kurdish and arabic folk dance and techno-rave parties.
Dabke Dilan, the name already expresses a lot – dance means Dabke in arabic and Dilan in kurdish – so it is about pure dance music. Beside their own compositions, they bring together different traditional music of Middle East and fuse new playful rhythms into electronic music. Dabke Dilan easily moves between fast and slow tempos, creating a musical space where body movements and emotions can meet. They fill the room with the energy, spirit and joy of Arabic Dabke, Kurdish Dilan and Club Music. In their concerts the crowd is dancing crazily to their powerful beats and flying high to virtuose ethnic instrumental solos.
In the Studio and their live concerts, besides Salah Ammo: Bouzouk, vocals (Syria – Kurdistan) and Moritz Scharf (Aramboa): Electronics, Guitar (Austria), the band offers great musicians such as: Peter Gabis: Darbuka, Raq, Dahol and Hand Pan (Austria), Oscar Antoli: Clarinet, Zurna, Kaval (Spain), Saeid Borna: Keybord (Iran), Pouyan Kheradmand: Santur, Setar, Gheychak (Iran).
Rizan Said, the great Syrian Kurdish keyboardist, who played and produced for long time the music of the famous sha’bi Style singer Omer Souleyman, is part of the recordings. Rizan can be invited as a special guest in concerts depending of the festival and the venue.
My very personal story about Dabke Dilan:
“When I started to sing and play Bouzouk, the Kurdish music and songs were forbidden in Syria, the only space where I could show my talent and perform the music on the stage was only in the weddings, small stages in the streets of the town, mostly open air, everybody could come and dance even if they are not invited officially. On these wedding stages I started to play for big audience and I had a chance to be free to sing in my mother language and be able to share with people my feelings and energy through the nice oriental melodies and dance grooves.
In this weddings the main instruments were Electric Bouzouk and Keyboards and sometimes there were some live instruments such as Zourna, Darbuke or kemençe. So for me the electronic music and dance is always related to these feelings, and is always the frame where you give people a space to be connected to each other, to feel free, to express their feeling through dancing.
With Dabke Dilan I want to go back to my childhood in North Syria and get the deep feelings which I got and which I saw it in the eyes of people when I was playing for them and bring it to Austria, to Europe where I am living now. So this is the essence of Dabke Dilan” Salah Ammo