Rast is a Persian word (راست) meaning "right" or "direct". Rast is regarded as the basic maqam in Iranian as well as in Arabic music and Turkish makam music, in the same way as the major scale in Western music, though it is rather different from the major scale in detail (the major scale is in fact more like maqam Ajam). Rast features a half-flat third and a half-flat seventh scale degrees.
Middle eastern Sephardic Jews liken the word Rast to head from the Hebrew word "rosh". Therefore they have a tradition of applying Maqam Rast to the prayers whenever they begin a new Torah book in the weekly Torah portions (this occurs approximately five times a year as there are five books in the Torah).
Maqam Rast on Do: Do / Re / Mi (half-Flat) / Fa / Sol / La / Si (H-F) / Do.
Maqam Rast RE: Re / Mi / Fa# (half-Sharp) / Sol / La / Si / Do# (H-S) / Re.
Maqam Rast Mi: Mi / Fa# / Sol# (H-S) / La / Si / Do# / Re# (H-S) / Mi.
Maqam Rast Fa: Fa / Sol / La (H-F) / Si flat / Do / Re / Mi (H-F) / Fa.
Maqam Rast Sol: Sol / La / Si (H-F) / Do / Re / Mi / Fa# (H-S) / Sol.
Maqam Rast La: La / Si / Do# (H-S) / Re / Mi / Fa# / Sol# (H-S) / La.
Maqam Rast Si: si / Do# / Re# (H-S) / Mi / Fa# / Sol# / La# (H-S) / Si.
(H-F) is Half-Flat: keep in mind that flat lowers the note half step down, Half flat means the note is lowered 1/4 step down)
(H-S) is Half-Sharp: Sharp raises the note half step up, half sharp raises it 1/4 step up)
Compositions in Rast (Turkish makam music)
Below is a list of some compositions in Rast makam.
- Rast Pesrev (Benli Hasan Aga)
- Rast Saz Semaisi (Selim III)
- Rast Maye (Hammamizade İsmail Dede Efendi)
- Touma, Habib Hassan. The Music of the Arabs. Portland and Cambridge: Amadeus Press, 1996: 43.