From the moment I heard the first track on the CD, I was hooked! I don’t know a word of Armenian, but that didn’t affect my enjoyment of this “collection of traditional Armenian children’s songs, rhymes, and poetry” one bit. The beautiful book and accompanying CD were produced by Houry Yapoujian Schmeizl in an effort to preserve her rich Armenian heritage and pass it along to her daughter and future generations. The project was a family affair, with Houry’s mom performing the arduous task of writing and translating the text, her sister contributing the lovely vocal parts and flute track, her brother-in-law recording and editing the CD, and her husband providing a guitar track.
The book contains an Armenian alphabet and pronunciation key, a guide for parents, twenty-five folk songs and poems, and a collection of children’s artwork adding color and personality to each page. The lyrics and text for each song and poem are written in Armenian, along with a transliteration and translation in English – very helpful! The printed music includes a melody line, lyrics, and chord symbols so that you can play and sing along. The layout of the book is clean and inviting, and the CD recording is very professional.
Whether you’re interested in exploring the music of another culture or just want to enjoy some beautiful music, you will thoroughly enjoy this collection. Visit Houry’s website for more information, to listen to sample recordings, and to order a copy for yourself.