Founded and led by the first female 'oud player to graduate Berklee College of Music, Aliya Cycon Project blends her jazzy and soulful compositions with characteristics of traditional Arabic music to create an unforgettable east-meets-west experience, and seeks to uplift and inspire listeners.
Aliya has just finished a month-long tour starting in Amman, Jordan and ending in Tunisia, funded by the United States Embassies in each country. During her tour, she gave numerous workshops to youth about blending musical traditions, and she gave 4 concerts in beautiful venues.
After a long summer of composing, arranging, rehearsing, and multiple 14-hour recording sessions, Aliya Cycon Project's newest album PRAYER (2017) has come to life. PRAYER explores the power of large orchestration and draws inspiration from the world-famous Yanni and the arrangements of Henry Mancini.
Along with leading the band on her acoustic 'oud, her Godin Guitars electric 'multioud' and her voice, Cycon composes and arranges all the band's repertoire--having picked up a passion for orchestration while completing her Contemporary Writing & Production major at Berklee. The band members represent a vast array of countries including Iran, Dominican Republic and Palestine. As a result, the group's sound has taken on aspects of many cultures.
The music of the group crosses genres of pop, latin, world music and Middle-eastern fusion. No two pieces are the same, and ACP prides itself in its musical diversity. Some pieces are up-tempo as they dance through intriguing rhythmic patterns, while others are deep and introspective and seduce listeners through repetitive melodic motives. Her Godin electric oud enables Cycon to further fuse traditional and contemporary.
The band has opened for major world music artists including Amir el-Saffar and Vieux Farka Toure. This summer, ACP shared the same stage as Pedrito Martinez Group and Tank & the Bangas at the Green River Festival in Greenfield, MA. Downbeat Magazine described their first album as "an alluring, shimmering dance between world pop and traditional Arabic music." (Frank John Hadley, March 2016).
ACP brings to life Cycon’s long-held goal of making accessible the lilting charm of Arabic music to a broader audience of both Easterners and Westerners, musicians and non. Fusing her love of cultures, travel, spirituality and originality, Aliya Cycon Project creates a world of its own.
ACP live at Musikfest in Bethlehem, PA
ACP live at Green River Festival in
Greenfield, MA (click to watch)