Hamza El Din, A Wish

Zie http://www.shakingzen.nl/2016/03/hamza-el-din-oud-music-from-nubia.html voor de achtergrond van Hamza El Din.

In ‘A Wish’ bezingt Hamza El Din hoe zijn familie hun land langs de rivier verloor na de bouw van Aswandam. Zijn dorp, Toshka, werd overstroomd en herbouwd ten noorden van Aswan. Maar in wezen drukt dit nummer de hoop uit dat het land aan het Nassermeer, niet ver van de oude stad, zijn oude glorie zal herwinnen dankzij nieuwe agrarische projecten en industrie.

A Wish – 1998
Lyrics (Nubian):  Mohi El Din Sherif (his last lyrics before passing away)
Music:  Hamza El Din
Arrangement:  W.A. Mathieu
Cello:  Jean Jeanrenaud
Piano: W.A. Mathieu
Oud, tar, and vocal:  Hamza El Din

If we could have a wish, O Nubia,
you would be a strong land
made by man and love,
green as you once were,
date palm trees growing
where once we sat and chatted.
When the flooded lands return,
green as they once were
east and west of the banks of the Nile,
date palms will stand tall filled with fruit,
filled with white, red and brown fruit,
in the country where we measured out the dates,
sharing the fruit among ourselves,
where once we sat and chatted.
A forest of new acacia branches fills my eyes,
and the mountains echo the water wheels’ cries.
Moonlight shines down on soft sand
where a person sweet as honey will come and rest
in the country where we harvest love,
where once we sat and chatted.

As the sailboats drift to the sound of the drum,
we gather and talk at the date palm tree.
On the grass in the shade of the largest tree
of the green island in the river,
a beautiful person, sweet as honey, comes to rest
in the country where we harvest love,
where we once sat and chatted.
We are as inseparable from our Nubian ways
as is a finger from a fingernail.
Wherever we go we carry our values with us.
If we want to rebuild our old country, we can.
We will build new water wheels.
We will be prosperous and peaceful
in this new-built country where we will gather,
where we will sit and chat again.


Noot van de vertaler:

“What beautiful, touching and heartfelt lyrics, even in translation!  And of course Hamza’s music and performance is transcendant!
I was fortunate in hearing him play solo (with an occasional tar accompanist) in Austin, Texas in 1975.  His performance was both electric and hypnotic:  There were no noises from the crowd whatsoever while Hamza performed.  Not a sniffle, not a cough, no movement from the crowd. And when the performance was truly over no one left the auditorium.  We all sat in silence, in wonder at what we had just experienced, grateful for having been at the feet of a true master.
Hamza blessed El Din Sherif in the liner notes, the blessing applies to Hamza El Din as well:

May God’s mercy be on him and on all His creatures in numbers beyond all reckoning.”