Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Mohamed Nour - A, B Boobaye
محمد نور - ألف بيه بوبايه
Alif Be Bubaye

This song is included in our Syrian Debke Podcast as well

Mohamed Nour - A, B Boobaye
محمد نور - ألف باء بوبايه

This is a song that really requires explanation rather than translation since it doesn't make much sense.

الف باء وبوبايه قلم رصاص ومحاية
انا بغني على المايك واسعد بيعزف ورايا

This is the crux of the song, which is kind of like a little game. The form usually employed is as follows:

الف باء وبوبايه قلم رصاص ومحاية
انا بكتب على اللوح وبتكتبوا ورايا

In the standard version, the line is something like "A, B, pencil and eraser, I write on the board and you write after me," as if to be a classroom type game. But the singer instead sings "I sing on the mic and Asaed plays after me," indicating that they are playing this kind of game with music, in this case debke songs. In the song when you hear "Asaed (أسعد)" or "Abu Suoud (أبو سعود)" he's referring to his accompanying musician.

So what they proceed to do in this framework is choose a letter, then a word that starts with that letter that refers to a particular line from a debke song, then they sing that line putting whatever embellishments they may choose. I'll explain each section best I can though it's not important for enjoying the song.

حرف التاء .. تع بورد
تع بورد تع بورد تع بورد تع

The letter "ta," "ta3 bourid"

"ta3 bourid (تع بورد)" means "come cool off" and is like the kind of thing a vendor of cold juice might be calling out in the street on a hot summer day.

حرف الواو

ويلي من العشق يا ويله عزبتني بنت الليل
كل يوم اسهر بمقصف كتر السهر هد الحيل

The letter "waw," "weeli"

He says "weeli (woe is me) from love, the girl of the night tormented me" then he says that he has stayed up every night thinking of her to the point that he doesn't have the energy to work or do anything.

حرف الواو .. وردة

وردة وردة على القطن تعالي واريد اشوفك بالنوح الشمالي

The letter "waw" (again), "warda"

"warda (وردة)" means a flower or rose, and he compares the girl to a flower and says he wants to see her.

حرف الهاء .. هاجر

هاجر فوق الرعوشي حوشي جدياتك حوشي
بكرا يعلم حب الديس وان شاش الهوى شوشي

The letter "he," "hajer"

Hajer is a name, like Hagar from the Torah. This line is hard to crack, he's courting Hajer but the lines are really weird, they are just for rhyme mostly I guess.

حرف الواو .. وعدتينا

وعدتينا تحت التينا وما جيتينا
وطلبنا بوسة من خدك ما عطيتينا

The letter "waw" (again), "wa3edtina"

"wa3edtina" means something like "you promised to meet us," and he's saying basically that they had a date, to meet under a tree and she didn't come. Then he says "I asked to kiss your cheek and you didn't let me."

حرف العين

عاشق لبنت البيتي وانا ابن الفلاحي
لا تخليني روح ليكي هيي قليبها مرتاحة
مليتيلي قلبي جراح
يا جميل رد ما برد يا هنا ردي ما بدي

The letter "3ayn", "3ashiq"

"3ashiq" means in love and he says that he is in love with a girl from a well-off family and that he is the son of a farmer. Then something that is hard to understand. Then he says "you filled my heart with wounds."

حرف الغاء .. غسل وشك

غسل وشك يا قمر بالصابون وبالحجر وينك يا أسعد
مشط شعرك يا أسعد والمشط الحلو انسكر وينك يا وينك يا أصلع

The letter "gha (ie ghayn)", "ghassel wishak"

This one especially is meant to be humorous and he inserts his own variation. He says "wash your fash, you moon (meaning pretty face), with soap and stone" then he says "where you at Asaed" meaning that the line is intended for his buddy Asaed. Then he says "comb your hair, Asaed, and the comb would break, where you at baldy." Normally in place of "baldy" he would say something like "moon" again, but he is using this line to make fun of his buddy I guess.

حرف الدال

ده ده دونك على ام البرقع ودونك
الله الله يا الله تحمي حسن نصر الله

The letter "dal," "dahdunek"

"dahdounek" doesn't have a clear meaning, it's the name of a debke song. He is addressing a woman referring to "the one in the burkah." In the following line he says "God, oh God, please protect Hassan Nasrallah," who is the political leader of Lebanon's Hezbollah.

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