A second and loving taste of the yemenite corpus of Marceau Gast

Rich of inquiries on agricultural practices of North Yemen’s population in the years 1970-1980, the Yemenite corpus of the ethnologist Marceau Gast also contains a few songs and some instrumental pieces. Some may be parts of ceremonies like weddings, others are recorded during informal moments.

As the extract that we put forward here  ; Marceau Gast exchanging words and laughter with a group of children and teenagers of a village of Sadah region in the northwest of Yemen. We are in november 1974, it’s the first year of the ethnologist’s field in the south of Arabian peninsula. On the recording, between the encouragements and the laughter of his friends, a young boy, that we guess is a teenager to the tone of his voice, starts singing a love song.

Of the tune here is a transcription in Arabic and a proposition of translation in english:

يا مسلمين يا عباد الله انا عاطش

في ذمتك يا الحبيب لو قلتلي مابش

في ذمتك يا الحبيب لو قلتلي مابش


يا مسلمين يا عباد الله من الهايم

يا مسلمين يا عباد الله من الهايم

وانا الذي تحت (شباك؟ شبان) الملك نايم

وانا الذي تحت (شباك؟ شبان) الملك نايم

Transcription

Yā maslimīn  yā ʻibād Allāh ʻanā ʻāṭš
Fī ḏammitak yā l-ḥabīb law gultalī mabaš
Fī ḏammitak yā l-ḥabīb law gultalī mabaš

Yā maslimīn  yā ʻibād Allāh man al-hayim
Yā maslimīn  yā ʻibād Allāh man al-hayim
Wa ʼanā llaḏī taḥt (šubāk? Šubān) al-malik nāyim
Wa ʼanā llaḏī taḥt (šubāk? Šubān) al-malik nāyim

Translation

Ô muslims, ô servants of God, I’am thirsty
Because of you, my love, if you tell me that there is nothing
Because of you, my love, if you tell me that there is nothing

Ô muslims, ô servants of God, I’m the everlasting lover
Ô muslims, ô servants of God, I’m the everlasting lover
I’m the one who sleeps under (the window?) of king
I’m the one who sleeps under (the window?) of king

Transcription : Hanan Maloom, François Dumas
Translation: Laure Principaud (thanks to Isabelle Blouet)


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