Now it’s been a while since I last wrote a ‘With Earphones In’ post that wasn’t one of our monthly playlists so there may be some amongst you wondering just what it is.

The basics are this:

– Choose an artist or band from a country other than our home country
– Collect informative material about the artist to share
– Make a playlist for a particular album
– Share, and hope that everyone learns about a new style of music from another culture

Not much to ask, right?

The original hope was that I’d be sharing a band from each country we travelled through, hoping that we would see live bands through each of those countries, but unfortunately, it didn’t quite work out that way. So, this month, I’m doing away with the formula and introducing you to a band from Nazareth (Yes, THAT Nazareth).

Introducing … Le Trio Joubran

Le Trio Joubran are a family trio of brothers who were born and raised in Nazareth, Palestine by their music-loving parents and from a young age have all learned to play the instrument that their father is recognised across the world as being one of it’s finest craftsmen of – the Oud.

The three brothers didn’t always play together though, in fact, it wasn’t until the oldest brother Samir returned from extensive touring for his own solo music project that the idea of playing with his other exceedingly talented brothers came in to shape.

Originally it was only the two older brothers Samir and Wissam who toured across Europe, largely in France that the idea took root that perhaps the youngest brother could also accompany them not only on the journey, but also in playing of the music, adding into the dexterity of the music and the possibility of a touring Oud ensemble; something you don’t see every day.

Many years and a handful of studio albums later, the trio find themselves residents of France where they have made probably their largest breakthrough and signed to the French world music distribution label, Harmonia Mundi, it comes as little surprise that they now call the country home.

The Album I’ve Chosen

Of the many studio albums and film soundtracks they’ve recorded, I’ve chosen one album in particular that I have a Couchsurfing host in Switzerland to thank for.

During one of many fantastic evenings spent with our host in Geneva, we were sitting down to eat a fantastic spread of freshly prepared Middle Eastern food that had us drooling into our laps, and playing over the top of all the preparation and the discussion was the most magnificent music.

The album playing is titled ‘Majâz’ and was released in 2009. Unfortunately, I was unable to find out the meaning of the title, though much like the sound of the songs themselves, the mystery of not knowing actually is part of the pleasure, and, as a guitar player it comes as no surprise to me that the intricate sound of Oud is so pleasing given that many regard the instrument as the grandfather of the modern day acoustic guitar.


I’ve managed to find all of the songs from the album on the popular music website, Soundcloud and hope thought the quality isn’t incredible, I hope the sound that you hear is enough to encourage the album itself.

Should you like the album and wish to download a copy, you can do so with the following Amazon Affiliate link which (if used) will earn us a few pennies towards the running of the blog. Not pounds, just pennies 🙂

Buy the album on Amazon

What do you think of the album?