It was a special night. Mohsen Namjoo delivered a stunning performance in his first U.S. concert in San Francisco’s Palace of Fine Arts Saturday. And fine indeed it was. It was divinely human. Full of unfamiliar sounds in familiar, heartfelt, real-life settings. It was sound and music and history and religion and politics and love and humanity all rolled into one.
Namjoo gleefully shattered every convention in Iranian music and fearlessly sang words of rage and frustration to describe the collective Iranian condition. In one song, I think it’s called “Dah-e Shast” (the 1980s), Namjoo utteres: “Basee ranj bordeem dar een saal 30, keh ranj bordeh baasheem faghat! Mersi, Mersi, Mersi…” (We suffered in these past 30 years — a reference to Ferdowsi “suffering” 30 years to complete his epic “Shahnameh” — only for the purpose of suffering. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!…” [video]
Namjoo is as unique and extraordinary as they come. Don’t miss a chance to see this musical force live on stage (U.S. tour dates). It’s an unforgettable experience — like nothing you’ve ever heard before. His humility, his audacity, his honesty, his sarcasm, his pain, his sweetness… will take over your heart.