Although the sacred music of ancient Egypt has been lost for millenia and is still shrouded in mystery, there are nevertheless countless hints and intimations of the exquisite place of music within the culture of dynastic Egyptian society. As yet, to our knowledge, there is no known musical notation which, if deciphered, would allow a direct transcription of their music for interpretation and performances today.
Nevertheless, after much research, Jeffrey Goodman has composed and recorded music that is derived as much as possible from the archeological evidence which has survived to this day. Such evidence includes actual instruments such as ancient harps and flutes which reside in museum collections around the world. So, for example, it has been reported that one flute dating from the 3rd millenia BC, when played, was pitched to an aeolian pentatonic scale. We do know that music pervaded every aspect of Egyptian life. This is evidenced by the fortunate abundance of images depicting music played in both sacred and more secular contexts. We can see many different ensembles of instruments, as well as an occasional depiction of a kind of music master or conductor, who appears to be signaling the musicians with hand gestures.
The music of this track is intended to be both an homage and an evocation of the great lost musical culture of ancient Egypt.
Cover art copyright © 2010 by Homa Goodman.