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Information: A country. Bosnia-Herzegovina

Roman, then contended for by Hungary and Byzantium.

Center of mediaeval Bogomil heresy.

Fell to Ottomans in 15th century.

Austrian protectorate in 1878, annexation in 1908, Given to Yugoslavia in 1918.

Rural vs. urban (rather than the less substantial Muslim v. Slav division: Muslim Bosnians are Slavs, and Catholics, Orthodox, and Muslims all live in both urban and rural settings. Rural Muslims have their own music (though they appreciate urban sevdalinke.)

Rural singing: "Mountain Weird Stuff" that Minja teaches, with non-tempered intervals. Actually, na bas style (cadence on a major fifth instead of major second) is increasingly tempered. Accompanied by a violin and a saz / sharkija / sargia in a narrow range, singing in parallel fourths or fifths, with a similar double-stopped playing on the fiddle. Sometimes two violins, sometimes two woman singers and a man sargija player. Said to be a Bosanska Posavina (Sava River valley in northern Bosnia) tradition that spread into the mountains and is practiced by the three major Bosnian ethnic groups: Muslim, Serbian, and Croatian<, with regional rather than ethnic styles.

Urban singing: sevdalinke (songs of sevdah, unrequited love) and similar styles (poravne pjesme – classic broad songs in a ponderously slow 3/4), sung by Muslims, Serbians, Croatians, and Sephardic Jews, founded on Turkish singing with Austrian, Serbian, Croatian and other overlays. Only the saz (with roughly diatonic to roughly chromatic fretting) survived into the 20th cty, accompanied now by violin and accordion-led ensembles, occasionally using tamburitza instruments. Doesn't have the parallel fourths or fifths. Sevdalinke singers: Nada Mamula/Mamoula (husband was Yugoslav Navy ranking officer), Safet Isović, Himzo Polovina (died of cancer), Zaim Imamović, Rade Mladenović, Zehra Deović, Beba Selimović, and Hamid Ragipović-Besko. Older sevdalinke singers (accompanied by saz) are Emina Ahmedhodzić-Zecaj and Avdo Vrabac. After WWII, RTB (Beograd) narodni orchestra director Carevac promoted Bosnian urban music and singers throughout Serbia. Jugoton (Zagreb) recorded the principle Bosnian singers and distributed across Yugoslavi. Many Bosnians worked in Croatia for the standard of living and employment, Bosnian music appeared in Croatian public places.

National Dance: Glamoć

Other name: Bosnia-Hercegovina

Location: Balkans

Regions: Bosnia, originally included the land between the Sava, Drina, and Una rivers.

Language: Bosnian

Religions: Predominantly Muslim


Few Bosnian teachers and lack of any charismatic Bosnian teacher, although Minja has popularized Bosnian singing, and Ankica Petrović and Mansur Hatić tour.

Unusual music.

Serb and Croat Bosnians comprise the majority of the few Bosnian immigrants to North America, and they prefer the Serb music of RTB and the tamburitza music of the North American Yugoslav immigrant community, a community which fed Vyts Beliajus, Michael Herman, Dick Crum, and John Filcich.

Lack of state-sponsored Bosnian ensembles in the former Yugoslavia.

Establishment of Glamoć as THE Bosnian dance precluded other dances in other state-sponsored ensembles.

Note: "KUD" means Kulturno-umetnička društva (Cultural-Artistic Society), a state-sponsored folk group founded for the preservation of national folk music and dance, as opposed to being for entertainment purposes.



Zemljo tisucljetna
Na vjernost ti se kunem
Od mora do Save
Od Drine do Une.

Jedna si jedina
Moja domovina
Jedna si jedina
Bosna i Hercegovina

Bog nek' te sacuva
Za pokoljenja nova
Zemljo mojih snova
Mojih pradjedova.

Jedna si jedina
Moja domovina
Jedna si jedina
Bosna i Hercegovina.


I pledge my loyalty to you
My thousand-year old land
From the Sava to the sea
From the Drina to the Una.

You are the one and only
The only homeland I have
You are the one and only
Bosnia and Herzegovina.

May God save you
For the generations to come
You are the land of my dreams
The land of my forefathers.

You are the one and only
The only homeland I have
You are the one and only
Bosnia and Herzegovina.


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