Khaliji (music)

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Khaliji (also spelled Khaleeji; Arabic: الموسيقى الخليجية‎ meaning Gulf music) is a type of modern contemporary music characteristic of Central and Eastern Arabia (see Arab states of the Persian Gulf) and popular across the Arab world. It is characterized by heavy use of the oud and other string instruments such as the violin, the occasional use of bagpipes, and the inclusion of percussion instruments such as the mirwas, tabl, and duff drums. Khaliji incorporates elements of African, Indian, and Iranian music overlaying indigenous Arabian genres such as Samri, Liwa, and Sawt.[1] Kuwait pioneered the Khaliji genre into its modern form in the second half of the 20th century and soon became the focal point of the industry in a fashion similar to Cairo and Beirut in the case of Arabic pop music.[2][3][4] Kuwaitis, in addition to Saudis, were also among the first commercial recording artists and composers in the Persian Gulf region and the Khaliji scene continues to be dominated primarily by Saudi, Kuwaiti, and Bahraini artists and composers today.[2][3][4]

Prominent Khaliji singers[edit]

Gulf Countries[edit]



  • Abas Albadri
  • Abdallah Al Rowaished
  • Abdulatif Alkuwaity
  • Abdulkareem Abdulkader
  • Abdulla Alfudhalah
  • Abdulaziz Althuwaihi
  • Abdulmohsen Almuhanna
  • Abdulqader Hadhoud
  • Abdulrahman Alhuraibi
  • Ahmed Alhuraibi
  • Aisha Al-Martta
  • Aliyah Hussain
  • Awaad Salem
  • Awadh Doukhi
  • Basem Alradhan
  • Bashar Alshatti
  • Bashar Sultan
  • Daffy
  • Fatat Sultan
  • Fatooma
  • Fawaz Almarzouq
  • Ghareed Alshati
  • Guitara Band
  • Hamad Almanea
  • Houmod Nasser
  • Hussain Jasem
  • Khaled bin Hussain
  • Layla Abdulaziz
  • Mahmoud Alkuwaity
  • Miami Band
  • Maram
  • Mohammed Albloushi
  • Mohammed Almisbah
  • Moustafa Ahmad
  • Motref Almotref
  • Nabil Shuail
  • Nawal El Kuwaitia
  • Oudah Almuhanna
  • Queen G
  • Rabab
  • Rabiha Marzouq
  • Rahaf Guitara
  • Saleh Alhuraibi
  • Saleh and Dawood Alkuwaity
  • Sana Alkharaz
  • Shadi Alkhaleej
  • Shamayel
  • Shams
  • Sulaiman Algassar
  • Sulaiman Almulla
  • Tareq Alkhurayef
  • Yahya Ahmad
  • Youssef Al Omani
  • Yousef Almotref



Saudi Arabia[edit]

United Arab Emirates[edit]

Other Arab Countries[edit]




  • Adel Al-Mukhtar
  • Hussam Kamel
  • Majid al-Muhandis
  • Osama Al Hamdani
  • Rahma Riad
  • Saif Nabeel
  • Waleed Al Shami








Other Countries[edit]


United Kingdom[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Eyre, Banning. "Feature: Africans in the Arabian (Persian) Gulf (interview with Joseph Braude)". Afropop Worldwide. Retrieved 16 September 2014.[permanent dead link]
  2. ^ a b Mustafa Said. "The History of Recording in the Gulf Area". Archived from the original on 16 April 2016. Retrieved 12 March 2016.
  3. ^ a b Laith Ulaby. "Performing the Past: Sea Music in the Arab Gulf States". p. 99. Archived from the original on 19 February 2016. Retrieved 12 March 2016.
  4. ^ a b Mustafa Said. "The History of Recording in the Gulf Area (2)". Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 12 March 2016.