Worlds Within Worlds are proud to announce 'Afghan Music In Exile: Mashhad 2022', an album and film series featuring
some of the most important classical and folk musicians of Afghanistan, who have been forced to leave their country due to
persecution from the Taliban.
‘Afghan Music In Exile: Mashhad 2022’ is a unique release. Recorded In Mashhad in the northeast of Iran in May 2022, this album
showcases the music of a culture facing an existential threat. To have recorded this work within Afghanistan would have been inviting
attacks, arrest and torture, or worse still.
The project was produced and managed on the ground by film-maker and musician Michel Gasco (Badieh, Orontes), and co-produced
by Lachlan Dale (Worlds Within Worlds, Hashshashin & Black Aleph). Gasco’s work with the Afghan community in Iran spans more
than a decade, leading Michel to become a formal student of rubab maestro Nasim Khushnawaz.
This album is a snapshot in time, and captures performances from some of Herat’s most important musician families of the past
century: Khushnawaz, Delahang and Hassanpour. Listeners will enjoy a variety of styles and instrumentation, including singer Asef
Habibi’s performance of a Kabuli ghazal, an Afghan classical vocal piece from Jawad Tabesh, a classical Rubab performance from
Vahid Delahang, a pure Herati folk track from the Rubab of Nasim Khushnawaz, and a Herati Dotar piece from Gholam Sakhi
Rassouli. The album also includes a distinctive folk song composed by the famous singer Ustad Amir Mohammad and sung by his son,
Aziz Ahmad Amiri.The return of Taliban to power in August 2021 has been a disaster for musicians, bringing a fresh ban on the performance of music, and ushering in a new wave of persecution. Being deprived of their livelihood, many are destitute, with families close to starvation.
Those who do try to practice their art face torture or worse. Many have been forced to flee the country if they have the means.
This is why we are proud to present this project, helping amplify the voices of Afghan musicians, so that they are not forgotten in this
difficult time. All profits from this release will go directly back to the artists involved. We're hoping to not only provide money to
Afghan musicians in a difficult and uncertain time, but to also play a small part in helping maintain the rich musical traditions of
‘Afghan Music In Exile: Mashhad 2022’ is a project of great importance. Not only does this release hope to raise the plight of Afghan
musicians, and to share the rich musical traditions that the country has to offer, but all profits will go directly back to the musicians
involved - many of whom are in a precarious situation. This album is one of a kind, and a celebration of a great culture that has been
under unbearable pressure with extremists trying to silence it.
'Afghan Music In Exile: Mashhad 2022' is out 23 June 2023 on Worlds Within Worlds. The first single, Tarane by Jawad Tabesh, is out