The music of Iran – Guides, Interviews and Features | Songlines

Iran Profile

  • Related Artists: Kayhan Kalhor, Bijan Chemirani, Mahsa Vahdat
  • Related Countries: Iran

Iranian music presents both ancient and modern faces. The Persian classical tradition with its mystical and contemplative melodies remains an intimate part of the culture and has undergone a renaissance in recent years, performed with an almost blues-like intensity.

As you’d expect from a huge and predominantly rural country, there are also numerous folk traditions, from the epic bards of the bakshi in north-eastern Iran to Kurdish players of the tanbur (long-necked lute with two or three strings).

Pop music was banned for almost 20 years after the 1979 revolution but a burgeoning scene now exists at home as well as abroad.


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