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Roots of Islamic and Jewish Music

SDSU hosts the Common Chords concert on Thursday, Oct. 3.
Common Chords is free for all faculty and staff as well as students with their Red ID.
Common Chords is free for all faculty and staff as well as students with their Red ID.

The San Diego State University Jewish Studies Program and the Religious Studies Department are hosting Common Chords IV: A Concert Exploring the Shared Roots of Islamic and Jewish Music.

“The artists featured in the concert are well versed in both the Islamic and Jewish cultures. There is a commonality between the two cultures of music that the artists understand and try to represent,” said Risa Levitt Kohn, director of the Jewish Studies Program.

This special event features SDSU'S Artist-in-Residence Yale Strom and members of his band Hot Pstromi.

The musicians will perform in concert with Pakistani rock star, Salman Ahmad, of South Asia's most popular rock band Junoon, internationally renowned Indian tabla player, Samir Chatterjee, and percussionist Sunny Jain, recognized as a leading voice in the emerging South Asian-American jazz movement.

United music

After first performing together in 2007, Strom and Ahmad realized how effective combing their music — that of a Jew and a Muslim — was for the audience.

Since then, they have performed musical dialogues across the country to demonstrate and foster positive and constructive conversations between people from all walks of life.

“I like the fact that we all come from different ethnic and religious backgrounds and we all find common ground through the music we play together,” Strom said. “Music is an art form all cultures have and it is truly the Esperanto of the world.”

Event details

The Common Chords concert will take place at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 3 at the Smith Recital Hall.

It is free for all faculty and staff as well as students with their Red ID. Tickets sales will begin at 6:15 p.m. for the general public and are $10, cash only, at the door. Seats are limited.

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