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Qasida Burda

16 Januari 2006 • 21 Komen Cetak Chenta!

I just bought a new collection of Qasida Burda - a masterpiece poem that was written by Egyptian Sufi scholar, Imam Sharifuddin al-Busiri. I am quite happy right now! Can't really wait for the parcel to be delivered at my door.

I had already purchased the commercial version of this Qasida Burda that was published by Guidance Media. You can go here to see that version. This version was sung by Ahbab al-Mustafa, the most recognized nasheed artist in the Hijjaz. However, I can't really wait for the next volume to be released. That volume only has 6 chapters out of 10 chapters in total. So, the remaining 4 chapters will be recorded in volume 2. By the way, Ahbab al-Mustafa sings the Qasida Burda beautifully in an original Yemeni nasheed style.

However, in the version that I bought today, The Burda, it was sung in an Andalusian style by Fez Singers - a Moroccan nasheed artist. This Burda is one of major project of Sheikh Hamza Yusuf. I personally think this version is more soul-lifting and more harmony than the previous one. But, I can't really judge it since I only listened to the samples given. Good point about this version is that, it has a total 10 chapters and its length spreads over 3 CDs. The bad point? Of course, the price is higher than Ahbab al-Mustafa. But, I will never regret for this investment. It worths my money. It got 3 CDs and a book contains the lyric and English translation of original Qasida Burda.

Although Alhambra Productions has discounted the price of The Burda, I did not buy from there since I can't register. I don't know what is their problem. Only people from UK, Australia, US, UAE, Canada and Malaysia can register easily without any need to call them by phone! This annoys me.

So I googled the web to find other online stores that sell The Burda in a very reasonable and affordable price. At last I found this store. The price is undiscounted, but I get a free bonus book and the shipping and handling cost is cheaper than the Alhambra Productions.

You may found this link very helpful if you want to get a basic history of Qasida Burda. I also want you to read this article from BBC. The following is extracted from the last paragraph:

Imam al-Busiri died in Alexandria, Egypt in the year 1295 CE. His grave is well known and is connected to a large mosque. His poem embellishes its walls. The Burda was also engraved on the Prophet's mosque in Madina, upon its inhabitant be the best of prayers and peace. There it adorned its walls and reminded believers for centuries before being erased by people who could not comprehend it. There is still one line left that has not been removed:
He is the beloved whose intercession is hoped for
As arms against a host of relentless calamities.

21 Komen Tambah Komen↴

I love the Burda too. I have a very long version on mp3 (I think I got it from DeenPort) as well as the shorter version (Salawat) by Mesut Kurtis, and another short recitation (more like an introduction really) which was done by Yusuf Islam and a Qari. Really moving.

Tanpa Nama

Oh yeah also have that Hamza Yusuf book. Really really good. I haven't seen it in more than a year though, my friends love it too that it is in constant circulation.

Tanpa Nama

There is an older recording of Burdah available in the british Isle. It was produced by Yusuf Islam's Mountain of Light in 2002, sung by the French-born Algerian, Khaled Belrhouzi. This singer hails from Lyon, France and is known as the Bulbul, 'Nightingale' for his melodious voice. What attracted me to him is the nasyid he sung in French. A delightful surprise.

But our Malayo-Indo Burdah still tops the rest. According to one source, while the Arab and Indo-Pak world have only about 16 melodies between them, the Malayo-Indo alone has created more than 20 rhythms, from the dry to the lemah gemalai to the ecstatic. Ahmad Jais' lagu raya is purpotedly a copy of one of the rhythms!

We have more than what meets our own eyes (or ears)!

Tanpa Nama

Yes that Khalid Berhouzi one is the one I have (or had, again it was borrowed by friends!):)

Do any recordings exist of the Malayo-Indo versions, and where can I get hold of them?

Tanpa Nama


Yes, recordings of our Nusantara burdah do exist, in cassette form at least. But I do not know how to get them from the British Isle (if I guess correctly, kenakelayan currently reside in London) and if there any Cd copies.

I bought a cassette of Burdah, which surprisingly consist of the whole Burdah, at Pondok Jenderam Hilir, Dengkil many years ago. It was sung by santris of Pondok Langitan in Jawa. They sing the couplets with alternating rhythms, so in just one casssette, costing about RM3 (if I am not mistaken), you can sample more than 10 ways of singing it. Marvelous, subhanallah!

I have not been back to Jenderam Hilir since, but I got a small, palm-sized book of the whole lyrics in Arabic and its Malay translation, plus a few pages of its history, there too, at their very well-maintained, well-stocked pondok's co-op shop.

I love the pondok and am always in a proselytizing mood when I talk about it, so apologies dear people for my ramblings.

I think the best person to be swamped with questions on Burdah and other Malay traditional way of singing things is Bahrus Shofa. He is a real, honest and knowledgable scholar from the Cat City. Thanks God he also blog.

To Bahrus Shofa I want to say this: 'The benefit for many outweighs the benefit for one'. When we non-scholar write, we write rubbish so we have to stop writing. But when a scholar write, he writes well and it is accepted as his ajr, so please keep on blogging.

Tanpa Nama

As Salaamu 'alaikum Sidi,

Apa khabar?

Thank you for mentioning Alhambra Productions in your blog. We really appreciate it. We would like to apologize for not providing a complete service to you. Are you located in Indonesia?

We have some good news for you for future orders:

1. If you need to order any items from us, you may contact us at and provide us with your address and item list. We will be glad to process your order and have our warehouse ship out your order.

2. If shipping is too expensive, you may contact Wardah Books in Singapore. They carry most of our popular items.

3. We are re-vamping our website so that all international customers may place an order on our site, insha'Allah.

4. We are working hard to place our material in mainstream outlets and bookstores.

We hope this will assist you in the future.

Terima Kasih and BarakAllahfeek.

Mikael Pittam
Operations Manager
Alhambra Productions

P.S. Sidi Haroon Sellars is a good friend of ours. We love Haroon!

Tanpa Nama

JazakAllah khair Anak Alam for the pointers on Jenderam Hilir and Sidi Bahrus Shofa. Will pursue that avenue up when I can insyaAllah. The version you bought from the pondok sounds marvellous.

Tanpa Nama

Thank you Anak Alam and Kenakelayan for posting the info here.

To Mikael Pittam, I don't expect somebody from Alhambra Productions would make a comment here. Thank you =)


Adinda TAwelll....

Bila dah sampai CD Burdah Alhambra tu, aku nak pinjam boleh tak?Boleh laa...boleh laa....Nak burn boleh?tarak duit nak beli maa....
In return, aku kasi ko pinjam Burdah Khalid Berlrhouzi yg anak alam sebut2 tu.Burdah dia pun sgt best.Aku beli 2 tahun lepas, tp tak penah bgtau ko.
By the way, balik summer ni, jom lah kita ke jenderam hilir atau mana2 pondok utk menggali 'harta karun' yg tak nampak oleh kita di bumi sendiri...

Adindaku Shafiq,

Benda baru, jangan haraplah adindaku Tawel tu nak kasi pinjam.

However, hope is not all lost. Kalau nak dengar full version volume 1 Qasidah Burdah Ahbab al-Mustafa ni, pergi ke Seeker's dan carik under category 'Islamic Songs' dia, blog entry 20th October 2005.

Teeheehee, Tawel, jangan marah-marah. Nanti kita nyanyi Burdah sama-sama rentak Asia, ok?

Anak Alam
-tak best betul pakai blogger ni-

Tanpa Nama

masya Allah.. best laa.. kan malaysia x pernah tahu pun... ada ke bookstore yg jual semua CD tue kat malaysia? saba islamic media ada jual tak?... pondok kat jenderam hilir, dengkil... kalo pegi sana, nak jumpa siapa? maaf laa sbb still komen kat haloscan.. eheh..

Tanpa Nama

I do not know whether Msian bookstores ada jual semua Cd2 itu. Bookstore terdekat adalah di Singapura.

Bagaimanapun, akhie, jangan susah hati kalau tidak dapat membeli Cd2 ini. Kata orang, not all that glitters is gold. Orang2 di Barat ini tiada banyak alternatif kecuali membeli CD2 drpd Alhambra dsbnya. Kita di Nusantara ada banyak alternatif lain selain drpd produk2 yang dikeluarkan di Barat.

Kalau ke pondok Dengkil atau ke Pondok Derang di Pokok Sena, akhie tentu bukan sahaja dapat membeli produk2 kita sendiri, yang dilagukan oleh anak bangsa kita sendiri dengan nuansa dan lagu rentak kita sendiri, bahkan dapat mendengar secara live dan dapat mengikuti dan join sekaki menyanyi bersama2.

Kalau ke Pondok Dengkil, tuan mudirnya Ustaz Hafiz Selamat. Kalau nak tahu tentang pondok2 lain di Malaysia, hubungilah Bahrus Shofa. Blognya ada di linkkan di sisip tepi ini.

Orang2 di Barat ini teringin benar hendak ke negeri kita, tersangat kagum mereka dengan budaya dan irama kita. Walhal, kita dan anak bangsa kita yang merantau ke negeri orang, jarang sekali mengambil iktibar bahawa 'harta karun yang kita cari itu sekian lamanya telahpun berada di bawah tempat tidur kita sendiri'.

Tanpa Nama

ohh.. alhamdulillah... dengkil dekat aje kat sini.. mekasih for the info... rasa-rasanya kene cari geng to join the treasure hunt.. eheh :D

hmm.. mungkin insan2 seperti Anak Alam & Tawel or sesiapa yang telah dianugerahkan Allah dgn pengalaman dan idea hebat akan mengkormesialkan rentak ini di bumi malaysia? :D

Moga Malaysia dapat menjadi platform utk industry ini.. insya Allah

"membina ekonomi bersama ummah"

Tanpa Nama

Banyak betul la pulak komen kat sini..sampai tak tahu nak komen yang mana. Tapi aku nak komen Shafiq punya komen =).

Bila dah sampai CD tu, aku inform kau. Aku ingat pun masa mula-mula nak beli Khalid Berlrhouzi punya versi..tapi entah lah..tak tergerak pulak hati. Rupa-rupanya kau ada..patut la..hehe..

To Anak Alam,
Rasanya sebab mengapa kita tak tahu pasal 'harta karun' kita ni adalah kerana kurang promosi. Aku sendiri pun tak tahu kewujudan Qasidah Burdah ni..sampai la aku pergi rumah Sidi Abdul Aziz kat Glasgow hari itu. Banyak jugak kawan-kawan aku yang tak tahu - aku maksudkan di sini ialah dari kalangan kawan-kawan aku yang suka ambil tahu pasal ilmu-ilmu Islam.

We lack of promotions. Something here and there must be corrected. Otherwise, our 'harta karun' remains buried.

P.S. Nak tak nak kena guna Blogger jugak untuk komen okay!! Hehe..

Oops terlupa plak nak komen sket lagi..
Shafiq, summer ni aku okay je kalau kau nak ajar pergi jenderam hilir n dengkil tu. Aku pun nak tau jugak tempat tu camne..hehe

Akhie and other readers,

As much as I am anti-globalisation, I am also not quite comfortable with commercialisation. The qasidah and other Islamic songs, for a true seeker and the most serious of murid, are essentially dhikr and du'a, tools to invigorate the body and soul's desire to worship. Religious songs and hadrah perform for money and worldly aims are naught for nothing.

Having said that, we do welcome those with greater himmah than us to popularise these jewels, these acme of our culture, through public means. They should, unlike current nasyeed groups, acknowledge and inform their listeners the origin and history behind each traditional Islamic song that they sing. In this way, our community will be educated enough to know their roots, and God willing, be not like the Wahabbis who blame everything on the past generations and wants to chuck out everything that has evolved in our culture between the third Islamic century and our current time.

I was greatly offended, when I first started qasidah singing among a certain Msian student group in our traditional Nusantara tune handed down by one teacher, one student quipped, 'Salah tune nih. Raihan tak nyanyi macam ini pun.'

The Malaysian laymen, compared to other Muslim racial group, have already know a lot of the traditional songs through these new nasyid groups, but it is definitely the commercial musicians' fault in failing to educate their audiences and in betraying the very tradition that has enables them to live well-off.

As such, we could only perpetuate the ignorance of our people by not referring people, who ask us, back to the pondok and the tuan gurus who still keep and who still contribute further to enrich this musical tradition of ours. Truly only under the guidance and the ever-watchful eyes of the guardians of the Prophet's treasures we will learn the meaning of the hadith 'Taste death before you die.'

Let's get back to our tuan gurus, pondok and learning knowledge with unbroken isnad! Leave all Syeikh Google, Maulana Yahoo and Sidi MSN behind! Ask the syeikh, not Mr. Jeeves!

Anak Alam

Tanpa Nama

BBC's article: "His grave is well known and is connected to a large mosque.."

Actually his grave, rahimahullah wanafa'ana bihi fiddarain, is not connected to a large mosque. His grave is resided in a small mosque. There is in fact a large mosque beside his mosque which is Imam Al-Qutub Abul Abbas Al-Mursi's rahimahullah wanafa'na bih fiddarain...

Nad'u lakum biziaratihim huna fi Misra bimahabbatikum bihim wa bi mahabbatihim wa iyyakum bi Rasullilah..

Tanpa Nama

Thank you AlJoofree for this supplement. I wish I can visit Imam Busiri's grave one day..insyaAllah =)

Btw Anak Alam, we can't deny the important roles of advertisement. Especially in this more globalized globe. Or you'll see our heritage to be forgotten and abandoned by our next young generations.

This is a matter of survival. Whether it is for money or not, we are not in a position to question. It depends on our intention after all.

Dear Tawel,
That was exactly the point.

If commercialisation is needed for their revival, then be it, but it should be done the way they are doing it here, in the West.

There is a booklet to accompany the Burdah right? And perhaps, since I have not got a copy of Alhambra's Burdah, some notes as well on the cover?

This is the way forward. At least those who do not seek spiritual endeavour (zawq), will still benefit from the material(s) intellectually.

What is a happening in our homeland is pure commercialisation, plain business, (short-term profit perhaps?). People listen to select passages from Sharaf al-Anam, ad-Diba'i, Burdah, etc without having the slightest idea where they originally from. Tuan guru punya qasidah, kumpulan nasyid yang dapat nama, isk isk.

Qasidah, hadrah, mawlid etc are not spectator sport.

Tanpa Nama

please visit if you want to see how Pondok Jenderam / Dengkil is doing now

Tanpa Nama

salam...kalu tak silap saya kt ade juga pgrogram yg menghidupkan qasidah burdah

Ada komen atau soalan?

Setiap komen insya-Allah dibaca kesemuanya. Dibalas jika perlu. Dibuang jika tak berkaitan. Sekian adanya.