Cheikh Raymond – The art of Constantine Malouf

A radio program of the European Institute of Jewish Music, hosted by Hervé Roten

MUSIQUES JUIVES D’HIER et D’AUJOURD’HUI – May 8, 2012 – JUDAIQUES FM, 21h05


Cheikh Raymond Leyris had a French name, was Jewish and sang in Arabic. Born in Constantine in 1912, natural child of a Christian woman and a Jewish man, he was the undisputed master of Arab-Andalusian music, called “Malouf” in Constantine. In this classical musical genre, transmitted for the most of it, orally through centuries since the glorious times of Arab Andalusia, he reached peaks of wisdom, invention and powerful creation.

On June 22, 1961, Cheikh Raymond was killed by gunshot in a Constantine’s market. His assassination caused the exile of the Jewish community, who lived there for 2000 years. Settled in France, his pupil Gaston Ghrenassia, guitar player of his orchestra, will become a famous singer called Enrico Macias.

This radio program is a trip into the lost world of Algerian Judaism.

The journalist and specialist of popular music, Bertrand Dicale, author of a book about Cheikh Raymond, travels along with us through this journey in which we will hear several excerpts from an anthology of recordings by Cheikh Raymond, released in 2011 by Universal Classics and Jazz France.

herve_photo_retouche_fond_uni_bleu_500px.jpgOfficer of the Ordre of Arts and letters, PhD in musicology at Paris University Sorbonne, prize-winning graduate from the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et de Danse de Paris, Hervé Roten is the director of the European Institute of Jewish Music since its creation in 2006.
Ethnomusicologist, he quickly developed an interest in the safeguard and digitization of archives, subjects he taught for several years in Reims and Marne-La-Vallée universities.
Author of many articles, books and recordings related to Jewish music, producer of radio programs, Hervé Roten is recognized today as one of the best specialists of Jewish music in the world.

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