The Wandering Microphone

wed 25 mar 2020 02:00 

Today’s broadcast of The Wandering Microphone is dedicated to music by the Uyghurs.

The Uyghurs are an ethnic minority in China who, for the most part, live in the northwestern province of Xinjiang, formerly known as East Turkestan. The Turkish-speaking, Islamic Uyghurs treasure an ancient and rich musical, literary and architectural culture. Uyghurs are particularly proud of the so-called “On ikki maqam”. These ‘Twelve Muqams’ are classical singing and dance suites, which have been placed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List because of their unique character. Read more about it here

However, Uyghur culture is under great pressure, not only because of China’s drastic modernisation and immigration of Hanchinese into the province of Xinjiang, but also because of the rigorous and systematic oppression of the Uyghur minority by the Chinese government. Reasons enough to pay attention to the music of the Uyghurs.
You can listen to the live recordings of the Mäshräp ensemble via this site. This Uyghur band, living in the Netherlands, plays traditional Uyghur classical and folk music. Their songs are about love, friendship and homesickness. Listen to them here en here 


  1. Ensemble Sadiyana – Anajan (5’27)
  2. Ensemble Sadiyana – Almaxan (2’58)
  3. Ensemble Sadiyana – Qambarxan (2’54)
  4. Ensemble Sadiyana – Bu Dunya (4’50)

CD :  Bu Dunya- This world. Songs and melodies of the Uighurs
(Pan records 1995)

  1. Pa Hat & Adengr – Margul-( 4’34)
  2. Kurban – Atoosh’s Song (2`56)
  3. Ili Zati – The Rushtar’s Song (2’49).
  4. Kurban-Pa Hat-Adengr – Ror Salei Muqam (14’29)

CD : Etnic Minorities of Northwest Xinjiang, China (Sublime frequencies z.j.)

  1. Raq muqam of ili (2`53)
  2. Shahzade khan (4`50)
  3. Derdengiz yaman (4`05)
  4. Nnimperde (5`07)

CD: The Uyghur Musicians From Xinjiang , Music from the oasis towns of Central Asia
(Globe Style 2000).