35+ Best For Your Arabic Music-Related Vocab

Are you fond of Arabic music? Would you like to know about its history, primary elements, and epic vocab to discuss music with your friends? If that’s the case, this article is perfect for you since we brought you a complete article about Arabic music-related vocab. So let’s get started!

Brief History And Evolution

The development of Arabic music through time and its interaction with musical traditions from nearby civilizations may be seen in the genre’s history. Arab music nowadays is a vibrant mosaic combining Arab and international influences.

If we talk about history, the muezzin for the call to prayer was chosen by the Prophet Muhammad because of the beauty and power of Abu Musa Al-Achaari’s voice. During the Umayyad and Abbasid eras, there were intercultural encounters between Arabs, Persians, Turks, and Byzantines that gave rise to new musical genres and instruments.

Ibn Misjah And Caliph Harun Al-Rashid

Ibn Misjah was a Persian lutenist who fused Persian, Syriac, Byzantine, and Arab music elements. Books penned by Abu al-Faraj al-Isfahani preserved his legacy and contributions to Arabian art songs. With the Caliph Harun al-Rashid and his son al-Mamun, the music peaked under the Abbasid Caliphate.

Zeryab And Music Theory

Zeryab is regarded as the fabled founder of the Andalusian musical tradition, which survived the fall of Granada in 1492 and the exodus of Muslims and Jews from Spain. Zeryab’s contributions to music theory and practice diverged from Middle Eastern and Greek theorists, who thought each mode had a distinct ethos. He created a system of twenty-four methods, one for each hour of the day, with “inherent” seasonal, emotional, and temporal features.

Components Of Arabic Music

The main elements of Arabian music are modal homophony, modal rhythm, and florid ornamentation. In its ultimate form, Ibn Misjah’s melodic modal system had eight modes. This system persisted until the eleventh century when there were twelve modes, which by the thirteenth century were known as maqamat.


Maqams are short, meterless verses performed to the accompaniment of an oud or drum while adhering to the poetic meter. Songs were short and had only one melody or maqam, still used today in Arabic music.

The community uses a new Maqam every Shabbat in Mizrahi and Sephardic Middle Eastern Jewish prayer services. The reading of the Qur’an has also included musical elements called maqams. The maqams are the essence of melody in Arabic music, and there is no definitive standard for Arabic music.

The maqamat are composed of the melodic and rhythmic elements of Arabic, Turkish, Armenian, and Byzantine music. Through oral tradition, the poetry and music of each region persisted, creating de facto norms for each.

Despite several initiatives, including the Cairo Music Conference, compiling a complete list of all Maqams is almost impossible.

Tones In Arabic Music

The Arabian gamut had formerly consisted of twelve tones, or about the same as the chromatic scale in Western music.

Five more tones were introduced in the thirteenth century, each one-eighth note just below chord complete note, i.e., below d, e, g, a, and b. In the sixteenth century, new optimizations of the gamut were established, and the tones and maqamat’s characteristics were altered.

They evolved into melodic formulae to be used in composition rather than scales within which melodies were written, a system akin to the ragas of Hindu music.


The nauba, a collection of vocal compositions with instrumental preludes, presumably beginning at the Abbasid court, is the primary style of Arabic music.

The short-necked lute known as the ud, from which the European lute took its shape and name, and the long-necked lute known as the tanbur were the main Arabian instruments, apart from others that were adapted from earlier Semitic civilizations.

There is little doubt that the Moors from Spain brought the flute to Europe, yet it is still debatable how much of an impact Arabic music has had on Western culture.


The tarkib—the simultaneous striking of specific notes with their fourth, fifth, or octave—was used as ornaments in Arabian music.

Before the emergence of instrumental music in the tenth century, poetry’s vocal meters dominated the rhythmic patterns. For each stanza or verse in vocal music, a brief theme is often repeated with intricate ornamentation.

Arabic music-related Vocab


concertحفلة موسيقيةhaflat musiqia
easy listeningاستماع سهلastimae sahl
heavy metalمعدن ثقيلmaedin thaqil
hip hopهيب هوبhib hwb
jazzموسيقى الجازmusiqaa aljaz
love songاغنية حبaghniat hubin
lyricsكلمات الاغنيةkalimat aliaghnia
melody or tuneاللحن أو اللحنallahn ‘aw allahn
national anthemالنشيد الوطنيalnashid alwataniu


rapموسيقى الرابmusiqaa alraab
record labelسجل العلامةsajal alealama
recording studioأستديو التسجيلustudyu altasjil
to recordلتسجيلlitasjil
to singليغنيliughni
voiceصوت بشريsawt bashariun

Useful Sentences

Here is a list of all the useful sentences that can help you immensely while talking about Arabic music or even music in general.

Although this songwriter’s previous album didn’t perform well, her current single has reached the top spot.على الرغم من أن الألبوم السابق لمؤلفة الأغاني لم يكن جيدًا ، إلا أن أغنيتها المنفردة الحالية وصلت إلى الصدارة.ealaa alraghm min ‘ana al’album alsaabiq limualifat al’aghani lam yakun jydan ، ‘iilaa ‘ana ‘ughniataha almunfaridat alhaliat wasalat ‘iilaa alsadarati.
I adore how symphonies can make you experience anything by merely utilizing their sounds.أعشق كيف يمكن للسمفونيات أن تجعلك تختبر أي شيء بمجرد استخدام أصواتها.aeshaq kayf yumkin lilsimfuniaat ‘an tajealak takhtabir ‘aya shay’ bimujarad astikhdam ‘aswatiha.
I always require some soundscape to assist me in preparing for tests.أحتاج دائمًا إلى بعض المناظر الصوتية لمساعدتي في التحضير للاختبارات.ahtaj dayman ‘iilaa baed almanazir alsawtiat limusaeadati fi altahdir lilaikhtibarati.
I believe that this is our song since it captures all the emotions we share with one another.أعتقد أن هذه أغنيتنا لأنها تجسد كل المشاعر التي نتشاركها مع بعضنا البعض.aetaqid ‘ana hadhih ‘ughniatana li’anaha tujasid kula almashaeir alati natasharakuha mae baedina albaed.
I despise its words, yet I must acknowledge that it’s a catchy tune.أنا أحتقر كلماتها ، لكن يجب أن أعترف بأنها لحن جذاب.ana ‘ahtaqir kalimatiha , lakin yajib ‘an ‘aetarif bi’anaha lahn jadhaabi.
I dislike this singer, yet I can’t get this tune out of my brain.أنا أكره هذا المغني ، ومع ذلك لا يمكنني إخراج هذه النغمة من ذهني.ana ‘akrah hadha almughaniy , wamae dhalik la yumkinuni ‘iikhraj hadhih alnaghmat min dhihni.
I like to listen to gentle tunes when I need to unwind.أحب الاستماع إلى الإيقاعات اللطيفة عندما أحتاج إلى الاسترخاء.uhibu aliastimae ‘iilaa al’iiqaeat allatifat eindama ‘ahtaj ‘iilaa aliastirkha’i.
I love the soundtrack you use while running. Can you kindly share it with me?أنا أحب الموسيقى التصويرية التي تستخدمها أثناء الجري. هل يمكنك مشاركتها معيana ‘uhibu almusiqaa altaswiriat alati tastakhdimuha ‘athna’ aljari. hal yumkinuk musharakatuha maei
I never imagined singing would be so much entertaining. I am very thrilled about the upcoming Karaoke night!لم أتخيل أبدًا أن الغناء سيكون ممتعًا جدًا. أشعر بسعادة غامرة تجاه ليلة الكاريوكي القادمة!lam ‘atakhayal abdan ‘ana alghina’ sayakun mmtean jdan. ‘asheur bisaeadat ghamirat tujah laylat alkarywky alqadimati!
I prefer to concentrate on the words of a song as I care about what the music is attempting to communicate.أفضل التركيز على كلمات الأغنية لأنني أهتم بما تحاول الموسيقى إيصاله.afdal altarkiz ealaa kalimat al’ughniat li’anani ‘ahtamu bima tuhawil almusiqaa ‘iisalahu.
I used to jam with the finest guitarists when I was a kid.كنت أعزف مع أفضل عازفي الجيتار عندما كنت طفلاً.kunt ‘aezif mae ‘afdal eazifi aljitar eindama kunt tflaan.
Joe usually surprises everyone when he begins dancing to the rhythm of a hip-hop tune.عادة ما يفاجئ جو الجميع عندما يبدأ في الرقص على أنغام موسيقى الهيب هوب.eadatan ma yufaji jawa aljamie eindama yabda fi alraqs ealaa ‘angham musiqaa alhib hub.
Kindly do not blast rap music. I hate it so much.يرجى عدم تفجير موسيقى الراب. أنا أكره ذلك كثيرا.yurjaa eadam tafjir musiqaa alraabi. ‘ana ‘akrah dhalik kathira.
Listening to uplifting music in the morning makes me feel good.الاستماع إلى الموسيقى الصاخبة في الصباح يجعلني أشعر بالرضا.aliastimae ‘iilaa almusiqaa alsaakhibat fi alsabah yajealuni ‘asheur bialrida.
Michael Jackson’s debut album was my favorite one.كان الألبوم الأول لمايكل جاكسون هو الألبوم المفضل لدي.kan al’album al’awal limaykil jaksun hu al’album almufadal lidi.
She is a fantastic vocalist because she always sings the perfect notes.إنها مغنية رائعة لأنها تغني دائمًا النوتات المثالية.iinaha mughniyat rayieat li’anaha tughni dayman alnuwtat almithaliata.
That guitarist is rocking that instrument.هذا عازف الجيتار هوز تلك الآلة الموسيقية.hadha eazif aljitar huaz tilk alalt almusiqiati.
Yesterday afternoon we danced until we dropped, and today I can barely get out of bed.رقصنا بعد ظهر الأمس حتى سقطنا ، واليوم لا أستطيع بالكاد النهوض من الفراش.raqasuna baed zuhr al’ams hataa saqatna , walyawm la ‘astatie bialkad alnuhud min alfarashi.

Wrapping Up

If you want to learn Arabic like a pro, you should check out the Ling App. Its website is the best language-learning app to help you improve your vocabulary. You will get access to a complete course based on your preferences, making learning fun and easy. Download the Ling App from Google Playstore or App Store and start learning Arabic right away!

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