Soundboard of Kourosh Yaghmaei

Weronika Stencel

Soundboard of Kourosh Yaghmaei is a radio show about “the father of Iranian psychedelic rock”. The neologism included in the title of the following radio play is crucial. I intended to guide listeners through an imaginary space of thought and sound, at the same time presenting a musician whose songs were groundbreaking for Iranian music of the 70s.

Why is the soundboard becoming so important? As an alternative sonic reality in which every listener can find himself, it is a hiding place where the deepest emotions can be found. I am convinced that Kouruosh Yaghmaei created his own soundboard, in which he accumulated many touching images. I noticed that his music, which is not fully subordinated to traditional Persian popular music, strikes listeners with sincerity and contains the author’s involvement.

The soundboard here is both a street and a room, it can be the sky, but also a puddle. Its form depends on the individual sensitivity of the listener. All you need is a little mindfulness, openness to the images flowing through your head while listening and closed eyes. Due to the fact that not everyone understands the Iranian language, I recommend listening to the foreign sounds of words. The lack of understanding can be an advantage here, as we are given the opportunity to listen to pure sounds and, consequently, focus solely on our feelings.

I am convinced that the soundboard helped save Kourosh Yaghmaei, who struggled with misunderstanding on the part of the government and suffered great consequences. I believe music can always protect a person.

The radio play features songs by Kourosh Yaghmaei from the album Back From the Brink: Pre Revolution Psychedelic Rock From Iran: 1973-1979 released by the California label Again Records in 2011.