1) Samai Al-Thaqil
An anonymous composition, most likely of Iraqi origin, which is well-known throughout the Arab world. It follows the classical Ottoman and Arabic Samai form. In this case, however, all four sections (hane) are in the characteristic 10/8 (3-2-2-3) rhythmic cycle known as Aksak Semai, contrary to the usual practice of changing the rhythm in the fourth section. This composition is in the makam (mode) Bayati.
2) Tekez - Miroloi (Lament) - Mantilatos
The first piece, Tekez, is a traditional Turkish piece in the familiar 9/8 (2-2-2-3) rhythm. It is followed by two compositions by Ross Daly, a lament (miroloi) in free rhythm, and another in the Thracian dance rhythm known as Mantilatos 7/8 (2-2-3).
3) Nihavent Zeybek
A composition by Ross Daly in the makam Nihavent and in the Zeybikiko dance rhythm 9/8 (2-2-2-3).
4) Band-e-Amir & Moments of Optimism
This piece was composed in Australia in the minibus in which we travelled countless miles from one place to another. It begins with an introduction in free time on the Afghan rabab in a variation of the Indian Raga Bhairavi. This is followed by a composed melody in 4/4 time, including the dhol-dolki and the santouri, around which the rabab improvises. In the next section, the original melody is adapted to the rhythms 6/8 and 9/8 respectively, and the whole piece ends with a composition in 18/8 time (2-2-3-2-2,2-3-2) by Linsey Pollak called Moments of Optimism.
5) Three Bektashi Nefes
Amongst the most beautiful pieces found in the Turkish musical tradition are the Nefes (hymns) of the Bektashi order of dervishes. This order was founded in the 13th century, inspired by the Anatolian mystic Haci Bektash Veli, and continues up until the present time. Contrary to the more well-known order of Mevlevi Dervishes, who were usually concentrated in the urban centers, where they made an enormous contribution to Ottoman classical music, the Bektashis were usually rural people whose music tended to conform to the forms of the folk music of the provinces. Almost all of the Ashiks of Turkey (wandering bards who sang and played the folk-lute saz) belonged to this order, and, even today, they play a very important role in the lives of the inhabitants of rural Turkey. Bektashi Nefes are usually very simple and clear melodies of striking beauty and, perhaps for that reason, in Turkey, even ordinary people, who are not members of the Bekta?i order, are especially fond of them and know how to sing them. The first two pieces here are quite old (the second one is reckoned to date from the 16th century), while the third piece is a composition belonging to the contemporary Ashik known as Ashik Veysel, who died in 1972. Ashik Veysel was one of the most beloved figures of contemporary Turkish folk culture. He wrote innumerable songs with especially beautiful and profound lyrics and, despite his being blind from birth, he followed the traditional AshikÕs mendicant way of life, travelling constantly all over the provinces of Turkey, sharing his songs with the people of the villages.
6) Stankina & Osogovka
The first piece is a composition by Ross Daly in the common Balkan rhythm of 11/8 (2-2-3-2-2). The second piece is from the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and is called Osogovka.
7) Sandansko Oro & Majsko Oro
Two traditional Balkan pieces, the first is Bulgarian and it is in a 22/8 rhythm (2-2-2-3,2-2-2-3,2-2). The second piece is from the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and it is in an 18/8 rhythm (2-2-3-2-2,3-2-2).
In Arabic, the word hatif refers to the spirits of dead poets who inhabit the desert and entice travellers with their song, causing them to lose their way. This piece was composed by Ross Daly and the haunting wind instrument heard in the beginning of the piece is none other than a small plastic watering-can converted into a musical instrument and played by Linsey Pollak.