Sevdalinka, also known as Sevdah music is a traditional Bosniak folk music integral to the unique Bosniak Islamic culture. In a musical sense it is characterised by a slow and moderate tempo and intense emotional, often melancholic melodies.
Most of the comosers of the Sevdah songs are unknown, because they have been written many centuries ago and were passed knee to knee, from generation to generation since then.

It is a unique combination of European, Oriental and Sephardic elements and as such standa out as a unique type of folk music in the Balkans.
Sephardic element was incorporated into it after the expulsion and settlement of the Iberian Jews in the Ottoman Empire.

Traditionally, Sevdalinka-s are women’s songs, most addressing the issue of love and longing, unfulfilled and unfortunate love, some touch on a woman’s physical desire for her loved one, and some have various comic elements. Apart from love they often speak about war and ancient heroes and their heroic deeds and tragic destinies as well.

Sevdah music originated probably sometimes in the early days of the Ottoman Bosnia in the 15th century.
The first historically mentioned Sevdalinka is considered to be “Bolest Muje Carevića” (The Illness of Mujo Carević), which is believed to have been written around the year 1475.

Today, Sevdalinka is still one of the most popular genres of Music in Bosnia but in the region as well.
And it is strongly associated with Bosniak Islamic culture.

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