Music of Bakhshis of Khorasan, a song of Iran in UNESCO World Heritage List

Music of Bakhshis of Khorasan or maqami music is one of the Iranian intangible heritages registered in the UNESCO World Heritage List. Based on what Khorasan people believe, a Bakhshi is a person who is capable of  playing dotar, as well as having features that only God can bestow on him.

The traditional music of Bakhshis of Khorasan was registered in 2010 by UNESCO. This pleasant music which is transmitted to the student through the teacher’s teachings, conveys a sense of perpetuation and cultural identity among the communities of Khorasan, and is an integral part of history, culture and religion of Khorasan. In this article, we will learn more about Iranian music and in particular about Khorasan maqami music.

Music of Bakhshis of Khorasan in Iran
Music of Bakhshis of Khorasan in Iran

 

North Khorasan music

Most of the residents of northern Khorasan are Kord and Turk immigrants who have their own special music. The north of Khorasan province, while having more breadth and diversity, also owns a special atmosphere, and epic, mysticism, love and mourning are the main backgrounds of this music. The music of this region from Iran is in fact the music of the mountains and plains, and tells the story of an eventful and sad life.

The musicians of North Khorasan are composed of three groups of lovers, Bakhshis and Luties. Lovers are the most ancient musicians who play instruments like Sorna, Dohol, Kamancheh, and Dayereh. From ancient times, Luties also have been the owners of Dayereh, and they were the messengers of the society of that time. So that this group of musicians were constantly traveling and narrating the events, news and events of the society. Meanwhile, Bakhsis known as improvisation and improvisation have the ability to play and sing for a long time, and are among the narrators of oral culture in North Khorasan.

READ!  Currency in Iran
Bakhshi
Bakhshi

 

Bakhshis of North Khorasan

According to the folklore and beliefs of the popular culture of the people of North Khorasan, not everybody who plays Dotar is a Bakhshi, and in fact Bakhshi means someone to whom God has bestowed blessings and whose moral characteristics and spiritual perfections have made him a distinct person. According to these narrations, a Bakhshi should be able to sing, play music, compose poetry, tell stories, and make and tune his own instrument. Thus, the phrase “Bakhshi” not only includes the musical skills of Dotar musicians and their knowledge, but also refers to the special respect of people for “Bakhshi” and its social status which is a common feature of musicians in North Khorasan and Turkmen Sahara. Therefore, a Bakhshi needs to be proficient in playing music, euphonic in singing, and predominant in storytelling and poetry reading. In terms of knowledge and mysticism, he must reach a stage that deserves to be called a Bakhshi. Also, the word “Bakhsi” is a Turkish word derived from the root “Baghish”, meaning someone who has blessing from someone.

Bakhshi music conveys the history, culture, moral and religious principles of Khorasan tribes, so that the social role of Bakhshis goes beyond the narration and storytelling. It is considered a healer and guardian of the cultural heritage of Khorasan tribes.

Bakhshis of Khorasan
Bakhshis of Khorasan

 

Bakhshis of northern parts of Khorasan are among the most original Dotar musicians who narrate all kinds of stories and epics to the people verbally. The most famous piece of Maqami music or music of Bakhshis of Khorasan is called “Navai”. This piece of music is unique and is accompanied by special mystical poems. This heritage is one of the most beautiful local songs in Iran which never be forgotten. Among the most famous Bakhshis of North Khorasan, we can mention Khan Mohammad Gheitaghi, Oliagholi Yeganeh Bakhshi Khirabad, Ahmad Gholi Ahmadi, Haj Ghorban Soleimani, Abbas Gholi Ranjbar, Alireza Soleimani and others.

READ!  Historic Tabriz Bazaar Complex

Music of Bakhshis of Khorasan an indelible heritage

The traditional music of Bakhshis of Khorasan is one of the Iran’s intangible heritage which was registered in 2010 by UNESCO. This pleasant music, which is passed on to the student through the teacher’s teachings, was previously played only by the men of the family, but in today’s teachings both groups of men and women play an important role in playing traditional Khorasan music. According to UNESCO, music is a part of the sense of perpetuation and cultural identity among Khorasan communities and is an integral part of the history, culture and religion of Khorasan.