Sing Me a Song of Songmy

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Sing Me a Song of Songmy
Sing Me a Song of Songmy.jpg
Studio album by
RecordedJuly 20 and August 10, 1970
StudioRegent Sound Studios, New York City
GenreFree jazz, 20th century classical music, tape music, experimental, avant garde, musique concrète, spoken word
SD 1576
Producerİlhan Mimaroğlu
İLhan Mimaroğlu and Freddie Hubbard chronology
Red Clay
Sing Me a Song of Songmy
Straight Life
Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic2/5 stars[1]
Discogs4.6/5 stars[2]

Sing Me a Song of Songmy (subtitled "A Fantasy For Electromagnetic Tape") is an album-length composition by avant-garde Turkish composer İlhan Mimaroğlu, released in 1971. Principal performers include jazz trumpeter Freddie Hubbard and Mimaroğlu himself.

The piece includes a chorus, strings, recitations of poems by Fazil Husnu Daglarca and other texts, organists and tape-based musique concrète, as well as Hubbard's jazz quintet: (tenor saxophonist Junior Cook, pianist Kenny Barron, bassist Art Booth and drummer Louis Hayes). It was Hubbard's third album released on the Atlantic label, and is one of his most experimental albums.

Concept and execution[edit]

“Songmy” in the title is a reference to “Son My”, a village in South Vietnam, the location of the mass murder, rape and mutilation of some 400 unarmed civilians by the US Army its Vietnam campaign in 1968.[3] The material on the album is heavily socio-political in tone, drawing on high-profile contemporary events like the Kent State shootings; the Tate–LaBianca murders; the Vietnam war; and the then escalating American protests against the war.

Mimaroğlu used his influence as an executive producer for Atlantic Records to produce an unusually high-budget album of avant-garde music. The music is a fusion of post-bop jazz with musique concrete, salted with poetry and text fragments, and united by a generally anti-war message. The format is that of a montage, in which there are not always obvious breaks between one section, or one subsection and the next. In the original Atlantic release the double-album jacket included a collage of material drawn from various books and newspapers, which paralleled the tone of the music.[4] On the whole, the album was not a commercial success, but it has been re-released on CD, and continues to garner positive reviews as an important work of 20th century avant-garde/jazz fusion music.[5]

Track listing[edit]

All compositions by Ilhan Mimaroglu


  1. "Threnody for Sharon Tate" - 2:04
  2. "This Is Combat I Know" - 8:56
  3. "The Crowd" - 7:03
  4. "What a Good Time for Kent State" - 1:28


  1. "Monodrama" - 2:54
  2. "Black Soldier" - 2:19
  3. "Interlude I" - 5:48
  4. "Interlude II" - 4:30
  5. "And Yet There Could Be Love" - 4:28
  6. "Postlude" - 1:05



  1. ^ Sing Me a Song of Songmy at AllMusic
  2. ^ Discogs
  3. ^ What is known as the My Lai Massacre in America is called the Son My Massacre in Vietnam.
  4. ^ Unfortunately, this supporting cover art has not been reproduced on subsequent CD releases. This seems ironic, considering that the CD cover is otherwise an exact reproduction of the original outer album jacket, even listing compositions as being on "Side 1" and "Side 2", and the disk label is an exact reproduction of the center label from the original vinyl disk release.
  5. ^ Ilhan Mimaroglu & Freddie Hubbard’s “Sing Me a Song of Songmy”