Ramesh (رامش) – Ramesh (2013)

capa cópia

The 1953 Iranian coup d’état, known in Iran as the 28 Mordad Coup, was the overthrow of the first democratically elected Prime Minister of Iran Mohammad Mosaddegh on 19 August 1953, orchestrated by the United Kingdom’s MI6 (Operation Boot) and the United States’s CIA (TPAJAX Project).

Mossadegh had sought to audit the books of the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company (AIOC), a British corporation (now BP) and to renegotiate the terms of the company’s access to Iranian oil reserves. Upon refusal of the AIOC to cooperate with the Iranian government, the parliament (Majlis) voted to nationalize the assets of the company and then, expel their representatives from the country. (!)

The Military Junta Awaits exiled Mohammad Reza Shah, 1953

The Military Junta awaits Mohammad Reza Shah, 1953

Following the coup, a military government under General Fazlollah Zahedi was formed which allowed exiled dictator Mohammad-Rezā Shāh Pahlavi, the Shah of Iran (Iranian king), to effectively rule the country as an absolute monarch.

By the ’70s, there was growing unrest with the Shah’s autocratic and repressive government along with its infamous police: the SAVAK. In January 1978 the first major demonstrations against the Shah occurred. After a year of strikes, clashes and millions of people on the streets, the country, and its economy were paralyzed.

The Shah fled Iran in January 1979, then Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini returned from exile to Tehran to establish the Islamic Republic, becoming the supreme leader.

Let’s go to our artist:

The golden age of Iranian pop music took place on a westernized and liberal Tehran of the ’60s and ’70s. This market offered an unprecedented way of artists for all tastes, the classically-trained Ramesh Azar Mohebbi (November 13, 1946) was part of it.

Playing the serious, quiet marquess in contrast to Googoosh’s languorous pop princess, both singers made the papers every time they changed their haircuts and appeared on TV frequently. Ramesh’s appearance though was not as gay and colorful like the blond-haired and joyfully dancing singer-actress mate!

Iranian Singers (Ramesh, Aref)

Ramesh, Giti, Aref,?

Ramesh appeared dark-haired, with stiffer hairstyles, always with a certain distance, never showing much of her emotions, except a somewhat melancholy of silence.

Belying what Light in the Attic promo-release says about the artist, Ramesh isn’t dead! Iranian Wiki, Youtube (!) and some musical blogs deny the fact. Its last song recording ‘Rumi’ (and album?) comes from 2003. Nowadays, she retired from the music business and glamorous spots to devote (only) to its family and daughter. (!)

Let’s go to our album:

I must admit, I’m very thrilled by the artist of today, this compilation by Pharaway Sounds is arguably one of the best, presenting us with a very rich scene that was the Iranian pre-revolution period. Other singers will be debuting here soon, ok?!

Ramesh & Aref

Ramesh & Aref

A funky queen whose rich voice sits like a mink coat, twirling its a melancholy way around long-necked lutes, sleazy Western brass, strings, synths and goblet drums. Luckily, the collection of videos with her ​​performances on TV programs and Festivals are vast! You can appreciate them at the following links, check it out!

The ‘IM’ highlights are Mondanam Az Bodanet and Aroose Noghreh Poosh.

بن سفر!

Tracks Include:

A1 Nago Na

A2 Goftehgoye Sabz

A3 Zoj

A4 Mondanam Az Bodanet w/ Fereidoon Farrokhzad

A5 Roodkhoneha

A6 Sharm-E Boos-E

B1 Afsoos

B2 Aroose Noghreh Poosh

B3 Asmaar Asmaar

B4 Delakam

B5 Labe Daryaa

B6 Ghoroobaa Ghashangan

Pharaway Sounds ‎– PHS009

Vakil Mosque

Vakil Mosque

4 Comments

  1. orlando trout says:

    if the shahs regime was so evil, why are you calling the pop music under that regime “golden age”, what came afterwards under the ayatollah was a thousands times worse. women covered, no music at all, onlu black mourning. a 10 year war that killed 1000,000 young men…but you seem to prefer that it seems.

    Like

  2. Saucer People says:

    Many, many thanks for the information on Ramesh, especially clearing up the fact she is actually alive and living a quite life (which is obviously not as dramatic as the inference she was murdered as a result of her sexuality during the turmoil of the Iranian Revolution!).

    Also many thanks for the information about the footage of her on You Tube, it was fascinating to watch (and so damned funky) and I was really interested the info on how Ramesh and Googoosh were framed in pre-revolutionary Iran in terms of binary opposites – of course this framing of female sexuality is as old as the hills, but it is this kind of information that really brings something new when I listen to this incredible music.

    Aside from the music, I have always been interested in the history of Iran and the MI6/CIA coup that overthrew the great Mohammad Mosaddegh and installed the US puppet Shah. Personally, I don’t see any contradiction (as the above comments suggest) between a simultaneous ‘Golden Age of Iranian Pop’ and a brutal totalitarian regime – one only has to listen to the music coming out of Nigeria in the 70s to understand that it is often during the most repressive periods in a given culture that the human soul responds with creativity as well as political opposition (not only the afro-beat of say Fela Kuti and Tony Allen but also the afro-rock and afro-disco music of seventies Nigeria is incredible).

    Personally, I find it very suspect, especially coming from an American documentary, namely the idea that the Shah is a ‘saint’ – sounds to me like a strand of the CIA backed ‘colour revolution’ psychological warfare programme – the target of which is both ‘western’ orientated Iranian youth and a western audience itself. One only has to read the stories of the countless people who were subject to the Israeli and CIA-trained torture techniques of the SAVAK to know that the revolution that occurred in seventies Iran was a populist movement against a western backed regime of oppression.

    Anyway, back to the music! If anyone knows of any of the more disco-orientated artists that were creating music in seventies Iran, I would be really grateful if they could drop their names.

    You have a wonderful blog – it is great to find one that provides not only great music, but a cultural, political and historical context to the music.

    Like

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