It may seem hard to believe now, with the Islamic Republic of Iran swathed in controversial breaches of human rights and nonsensical nuclear issues, but a little over 30 years ago it was all glitz and glamour, rock and roll. The shah of Iran promoted modernization to the detriment of Persian culture and most Iranians loathed the stoic king by the end of his reign. Centuries of monarchist rule gave way to a staunch Islamist regime during the populist Iranian Revolution of 1979. The new Iranian government sought to eradicate any remnants of the imperialist monarchy and 'having fun' was banned entirely. Music's controversial status within Islam meant that the Persian pop industry was incongruous with Iran's new and heavy-handed rulers. All of Iran's record labels were forcibly shut down, the entire broadcasting industry was Islamicized, and a fearful population burned their records, buried their books and complied, at least on the surface, with the Islamic regime's new (and very boring) rules and regulations. "Rangarang" is a compilation of forgotten jewels from pre-revolutionary Iran. These songs tell the stories of an artisan community that flourished during the 1960s and 1970s before vanishing into oblivion. The pop stars who stayed in Iran were summonsed to the revolutionary court and forced to sign a declaration promising to abandon their careers and never perform again. By the time an exilic music industry had been established in Los Angeles, where many musicians settled after fleeing the chaotic disarray of post-revolutionary war-torn Iran, the beats and melodies of the monarchist era had given way to the synthesizers of the 1980s and Iranian pop music would never be the same again. The range of the tracks included on "Rangarang" is astonishing, from funky workouts and soulful pop to jazzy grooves and yearning ballads, all wonderfully and imaginatively produced and arranged, giving shape to truly popular music. TRACKLIST: 1. Fereidoon Farrokhzad - Aashianeh 2. Neli - Do Parandeh 3. Mehrpouya - Dokhtare Shab 4. Leila Forouhar - Moama 5. Afshin Moghaddam - Gharibooneh 6. Pooran - Ey Vallah (feat. Manouchehr Sakhaei) 7. Shohreh - Omadi 8. Habib - Gheseye Rooze Siah 9. Pooran - Shahre Paiz 10. Kourosh Yaghmaei - Khaar 11. Hamid Shabkhiz - Asemoni 12. Googoosh - Age Bemooni 13. Simin Ghanem - Lanehe Moor 14. Pooran - Viroon Beshi Ay Del 15. Dariush - Daad Az In Del 16. Leila Forouhar - Kalaghaye Khabarchin 17. Ahmad Zahir - Tang Ast Dilam 18. Googoosh - Age Mishod Che Mishod 19. Habib - Bi To Man 20. Hassan Khayatbashi - Goftam Be Chashm 21. Beti - Bikasi 22. Leila Forouhar - Hamparvaz 23. Aref - Negaham Kon (feat. Hayedeh) 24. Giti - Tarsam Az Eshgh 25. Simin Ghanem - Abre Payizi 26. Hamid Shabkhiz - Asheghi Doroughe 27. Leila Forouhar - Yek Nafas Atre To Bas 28. Neli - Hobab 2xCD compilation with Iranian Funk, Rock Music and Pop from the 1960s/1970s. This 'motrebi' style became hugely popular during the last years of the Shah's reign. Most music from this collection was originally released by the label 'Ahang Rooz.' The set includes an essay on Iranian music by Bronwen Robertson.
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