Ghaneli sports hundreds of Arabic artists and thousands of albums. Sign up is simple and you can start downloading. The site is available in both English and Arabic which is handy for us English speakers! I can’t read any Arabic script as yet.
I haven’t quite got the hang of the site yet. I don’t seem to be able to listen to anything first, so it’s a bit of pot luck unless you know what you are after. The other problem is that I only seem to be able to download “Albums” not songs or “collections” by hitting the download button but you can download individual songs by looking for the text link download. Despite these glitches I still have access to 3394 albums!! A slightly annoying thing that happens is that sometimes the songs get placed on your start up page but it takes only a second to delete the shortcuts from there. Abou El Leef’s album Super Leefa had “ghaneli” come through as the title for every song so I needed to do a bit of cut and paste from the website to get the correct titles but for the other albums I have tried that didn’t happen.
Jade belly dance students should consider downloading the cave man looking album by Abou El Leef. This is an album I bought in Egypt and we use the song Abl Ma Anam in the kid’s class. I had to try a lot of times but I finally managed to download songs by Oum Kalthoum -Joy! .
For a bit of fun I have been picking a few albums at random. I have discovered that I am not really a fan of Amar – too babyish voice for my taste. Wael Jassar is a bit hit and miss for me. I think every dancer should have an Amr Diab song, if only to have an excuse to have a picture of him on an album cover. (I still remember the big billboards of him in Cairo and each time the group of dancers I was with drove by, all conversations stopped momentarily 🙂 )
I don’t know what the legalities are of this site but it looks pretty clean. I haven’t got any viruses off it as yet and it isn’t full of horrid flashing advertising. My biggest concern is that I am unsure how artists get reimbursed. I am suspecting they don’t (but I am not sure), so for the sake of good Karma I would suggest that if you download something you really like listening or dancing to then you should seek out potentially more official versions. Also it’s a good idea to tell people what you like to give the artist a bit of a plug.
Totally worth checking out. What is your favourite Arabic artist? Did Ghaneli work for you? What’s your best find? Comment below….