The Alan Sondheim Mail Archive

August 31, 2012

Channeling the Dead, Sarinda (best listening)

I feel I'm channeling the dead; playing the sarinda, from
Afghanistan, is like no other instrument; the music I play
isn't from me, is like no other; I hear the voices of the
dead in the deeper strings, the chorus; I hear the cries
and lamentations of the living in the upper strings - and
I mean this literally, the instrument controls me, it's
haunted, spirits are living in it, spirits are speaking
through me, it hadn't been played in years, perhaps
decades, they were waiting for me, they are coming for me,
I've come for them, I've come to play their grief and
their sorrow, something takes me, takes the movement of
the bow, the sway of the instrument, it may be centuries
old, there is grief residing in it, anguish within it,
when I play the sarinda, I don't know who I am, something
or someone else, is moving the bow

I am in tears playing this instrument, trembling - it's
tearing me apart - I've been having twitches again -
something neurological - I've been to the doctor before
- have to go again - the music helps me along - cries
out to me - something -

(Earlier) Channeling Little Song, Sarinda (best listening)

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