ANFTD #33: Amir El Saffar

Amir-ElSaffar-Press-Landing-2-682x1024Amir El Saffar is playing with Two Rivers at Symphony Space on September 17. Other dates in the current tour can be found at

Festival of New Trumpet Music, from September 24 to 29 in New York, can be found at

All music excerpts are from Amir’s new recording on Pi Recordings, Crisis.

Amir El Saffar – trumpet, vocal, santur
Carlo DeRosa – bass
Nasheet Waits – drums
Ole Mathisen – tenor and soprano sax
Tareq Abboushi – buzuq
Zafer Tawil – oud, percussion

Love Poem
Taqsim Saba
The Great Dictator
all composed by Amir El Saffar

Musicians mentioned:

Samy El Bably, Trumpeter from Egypt.

Hamid Al Saadi, Iraqi maqam vocalist.

Ziad Rahbani, Lebanese pianist and composer.

Amir also mentions the poet Ibn Arabi, one of the great Sufi mystics.
Info on him at Wikipedia and Ibn ‘Arabi Society.

The translation of Love Poem is:

The loved ones of my heart, where are they?
By God, tell me, where are they?
As you saw their illusion,
will you show to me their reality?
How long, how long was I seeking them,
and how often did I beg to be united with them,
Until I had no fear of being parted from them,
and yet I feared to be amongst them.
Perhaps my happy star will hinder
their going afar from me,
That my eye may be blest with them,
and that I may not ask, ‘Where are they?’

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