Meet the hardcore punk rocker preserving sacred Syrian chants

Meet Jason Hamacher, the accidental archivist of traditional Christian chants from Aleppo.

How did a hardcore punk rocker end up preserving some of Syria's rarest and most sacred chants?

Jason Hamacher joins Shad to share the story of a misunderstanding, which led to a pre-war visit to Syria, which led to an ambitious preservation project. 

After experiencing the power of traditional Christian and Sufi chants in person, Hamacher was stunned to discover that no one had ever recorded the music. He explains his passion for ancient tradition, the very real danger it faces, and his internal conflict about getting involved. 

WEB EXTRA | Earlier this year, Hamacher released a new album of Syrian recordings called Forty Martyrs: Armenian Chanting from Aleppo. Sample it below. 

Jason Hamacher says the history of Syria was so overwhelming he had to sit down. (Fabiola Carletti/CBC)


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