Mental travel to the good old days can help anyone to feel better when the present is becoming uncomfortable. The sentimental longing for the past can strengthen the bond with the present and make one feel more optimistic about the future. But memories are meaningless without emotion, and nothing spurs emotional reactions like music.
Stumbling upon old songs, people often remember a favourite singer and lyrics that speak on a personal level and bring back memories of what life felt like then. The lyrics and music of many old songs can bring back happy memories and nostalgia for the past.
Here are some free-download sites for Arabic songs that may help you to assuage that longing.
Search for Nagamjameel on Facebook or Messenger and go to Aghani al-Zaman al-Jameel (songs of the golden days) to find songs by legends like Umm Kulthoum, Mohamed Abdel-Wahab, Abdel-Halim Hafez, Farid Al-Atrash, Warda, Fayza Ahmed, Fayrouz and others.
Sound Cloud’s free-streaming service offers a free-download collection including old Arabic hits. It’s also available in the Android applications space.
The MP3 music download hunter is an Android application that’s available through Google Play. After locating a collection of free music downloads, the download hunter helps to organise them for storage and offline listening on mobile devices.
www.melody4arab.com is a free online source to download high-quality Arabic music in Mp3 and video formats. Songs, music and lyrics can also be downloaded from https://www.esm3.com, https://mp3songs.alarab.com, https://www.al-fann.net and https://www.arabsounds.net
*A version of this article appears in print in the 20 February, 2020 edition of Al-Ahram Weekly.