It is possible to find references to God, the Prophet Mohamed pbuh or faith in many Algerian songs. And almost all musical styles, from the most sacred to the most profane, display such references. This perhaps shows the place religion’s taken in our people’s daily life.
Nasheeds and mystic Sufi music could be flagged as sacred even though the first nasheeds I knew were more patriotic than religious. Algeria offers in Chaabi and Andalusian music two musical styles which could convey a religious message. The Madih is for example a famous sub-genre of the Chaabi music (be it in Arabic or Kabyle) and Algerians are used to hearing it in Ramadhan after the Iftar and on Fridays after the Jumua prayer.
Some Chaabi and Andalusian singers have also dedicated some songs to relate religious stories which are told in the Quran or the tradition. I propose to share some of them in this post.
Sidna Ibrahim elkhalil pbuh
This is the story of Prophets Ibrahim and his son Ismail‘s sacrifice. The song is famous in Algeria and many singers have performed it. The best version is of course Abdelkrim Dali’s (below) but you can click on the following names to listen to other versions: Kamel Bourdib, Nouri Koufi, Meriem Benallal, Dalila Mekader, Imene Sahir or Nacereddine Chaouli.
Sidna Yaaqub w Sidna Youcef pbut
Sidna Moussa pbuh
The story of Prophet Moses is related to Egypt’s Pharaoh. Abdelmalek Imansouren has a song telling the story we hear in the tradition about the apprentice sorcerer who denies the Pharaoh’s divinity. Part 1 and Part 2.
Sidna Mohamed pbuh
Boudjemaa El Ankis has also a song describing the grief of the Prophet’s daughter Fatima raa and sharing her perspective till her own death.