Canon of Qanun (1)

East Mediterranean 
Musical Instruments
Egypt, Syria, Liban, Turkey, Greece

01 - Mostafa Masri - Bayati Taqsim And Samai (El-Aryane)
02 - Samer Hamdan - Nahawant Taqsim And Folk Danse
03 - George Hakim - Rast Taqsim And Doulab
04 - Husein Unal - Hicaz Taksim And Pesrev (Veli Dede)
05 - Husein Unal - Huzzam Taqsim And Pesrev
06 - Husein Unal - Rast Takisim And Metal (Ali Rifat Bey)
07 - Petros Tabouris - Ballos
08 - Petros Tabouris - Yenovefa
09 - Petros Tabouris - Kalamatianos
10 - Petros Tabouris - Rast Zeibekikos
11 - Petros Tabouris - Hasapikos

Egypt - Mostafa Masri - Syria - Samer Hamdan
Lebanon - George Hakim - Turkey - Husein Unal
Greece - Petros Tabouris




The kanun (Arabic: قانون‎, qānūn, pl. qawānīn; Greek: κανονάκι, kanonaki; Armenian: քանոն, k’anon; Persian: قانون‎, qānūn; Azerbaijani: qanun; Turkish: kanun) is a string instrument played in much of the Middle East, Central Asia, and southeastern Europe. The name derives from the Arabic word kānun, which means "rule, norm, principle" itself from ancient Greek 'κανών' rule. Its traditional music is based on maqamat. It is a type of large zither with a narrow trapezoidal soundboard. Nylon or PVC strings are stretched over a single bridge poised on fish-skins on one end, attached to tuning pegs at the other end...

 Folk instruments of Greece: 
Kanonaki (Kanoun)

The origins of this fascinating instrument are found in Asia, many centuries before the Classical Greek Era. It was then known by the name of PSALTIRION. However, it is believed that KANONAKI owes its name to Pythagoras , the great Greek Mathematician who was a musician as well, and who observed, as it is said, the harmony of stars. As an experiment, he produced a basic musical instrument, a monochord (only one string), the "kanon" which he divided into seven spaces. We do not exactly know when the PSALTIRION was named KANONAKI. It's very probable though that this happened with the growth of Islam and the contact of Arabs and Turks with the people of Europe.

We find similar instruments under the names of triangle psaltirion, magadis, epigonion, simikion etc. in written sources of Classical Greece, but there is not a definite evidence whether they are the same PSALTIRION. On the opposite, in Byzantine and Metabyzantine years there is plenty of visual information about it in illustrated manuscripts and wall paintings in churches.

About Qanuns

قانون (Qanun) means "law" in Arabic and probably derives it's name from the Greek "κανών"(Kanon) meaning "rule".  It was most likely given the name because in traditional ensembles it lays down the law of pitch for the other instruents and the singer.  The Qanun is known to have been a part of Middle Eastern music since at least the 10th century.  It's widely believed to have descended from the ancient Egyptian arched harp.  Altough it's exact origination is not known there are local legends attributing it's creation to Ibn Al-Farabi.  Farabi was a philosopher born in a village called Wasij (near Farab, Turkistan) in 870.  Al-Farabi wrote a rather extensive ammount on music theory in both Arab and Persian classical music.  His works include a book titled 'Kitab al-Musiqa al-Kabir (Book of Great Music)' and a treatise on therapy called 'Meanings of the Intellect' which addressed music as a form of therapy.  He was know to have played and invented several instruments and was such an accomplished player he could make his audience laugh or cry at will...


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