When IS took power in the region of Mosul in Iraq, no music was allowed, assuming that music is haram (forbidden by religious law). All instruments were destroyed one by one and music schools were bombed. Nobody was allowed to listen to any kind of music. In June 2017, Rudi Vranckx, a Belgian war journalist, made a reportage about the city of Mosul completely destroyed by IS. He came up with the idea to collect music instruments in Belgium to donate them to the Iraqi people there.
The campaign was a big success. Several Belgian mothers, fathers and children were willing to donate their instruments. In September 2018, Rudi and his team left with a cartload of instruments to Mosul. It was a trip with obstacles, but the Iraqi musicians couldn’t have been happier when they unpacked the instruments.
Since then, music has been playing in the streets of Mosul again. The Iraqi musicians rebuilt the destroyed music school and were able to play and to teach music again. For boys and girls.
A few months later, the Iraqi musicians were invited to come to Belgium and meet the people who donated their instruments.
The Iraqi musicians surprised the journalist with an old Iraqi love song “Fog el nahel” and the result is fantastic.
I’ve got a friend above
I don’t know if that’s the shine of your cheek or a shine above (ie the moon)
I swear I don’t even want her
It’s ruining me/It’s causing me a problem
Your shiny cheeks oh my love and my eyes
Enlighten the country
I have no patient to rest oh my eyes
while she is so far away
and I swear I’ve been tortured by her beautiful eyes