Note: Alan Lomax describes the scene as the relatives and well-wishers welcome the bridal party. The ‘white sheet’ worn by the women is probably the haik, a traditional women’s garment which consists of a large piece of cloth wrapped around the body to serve as both robe and, when drawn over the face, a veil which fulfills the Islamic mandate for hijab (covering).
About the session: A collection of wedding music and festivities recorded in the southeastern town of Erfoud on the edge of the Sahara Desert. The wedding took place on September 17th, 1967. The lead instrument on these recordings is ghaita (oboe) with three percussion instruments (bendir, darbaka and kettle drum) forming the rhythm section. The names of the musicians are as follows : Abderrahmane ben Mohamed, his sons Mohamed and Abdelkader ben Abderrahmane, Ahmed Benjilali, and Mohamed ben Lakhlifa—all residents of Erfoud. At the wedding in Erfoud on September 17th, 1967, Alan Lomax recorded songs by the troupe of Monsieur Abderrahmane ben Mohamed, featuring lead vocals from Tahar ben Larbi. Most of the songs are in praise of King Hassan II (1929–1999). The Tafilalet region, in which Erfoud is situated, is the ancient seat of Morocco’s current ruling family, the Alaouite Dynasty, who made their first capital at the now-vanished city of Sijilmassa in this region. The Tafilalet area remains a bastion of support for the monarchy, as evidenced by the laudatory sentiments expressed in these songs.
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