Musical terms

Arabic maqamat is the system of melodic modes used in traditional Arabic music. The word maqam in Arabic means place, location or rank. The Arabic maqam is a melody type. It is slightly comparable to scales and church modes in the Western world. One main distictions between the Arabian and the Western modes is the use of quarter tones, the notes between the black and the white keys of the piano, that were lost in the western music after the middle ages due to standarisation of the western music and the development of the keyboard instruments like the piano and the organ.

The Arabic rhythms are of a unique wealth and richness. Many different rhythms developed over centuries in all kinds of tempo and meter. From simple 4/4 to complex 48/4. The instruments used most are the riq (tambourin), the darabuka (vase shaped drum), framedrum in many local variations.
typical rhythms are:
Malfouf, Samai, Maqsuni, Beladi.