Must-Know Song for Belly Dance: “Taht Il Shibbak”
We are moving on to #10 from the “Must Know Songs for Bellydancers” list with “Taht Il Shibbak” – a real favorite of mine!
Who, What and When?
This song first appeared in the Egyptian movie “Laabet el Sitt” (The Lady’s Puppet) in 1946. The music was composed by Asis Osman and they lyrics were written by Badeh Khairy. Taheya Karioca dances to “Taht Il Shibbak” in the movie, accompanied by an ensemble that includes Osman singing and playing the oud. You can watch this performance in the video at the end of this post.
What is “Taht Il Shibbak” about?
“Taht Il Shibbak” means “Below My Window.” This song is from the point of view of a girl looking out her window, seeing a gorgeous man walking on the street. She is flirting with him – either in her imagination or in reality . Here’s a little taste of the lyrics from a very cheeky translation. You can find more of the lyrics here. Being a folksy song with a long history, different versions have different verses – some may not have even been in the original.
Below my window I caught sight of you, you (stud).
What’s up with you? Talk to me (hot stuff)
Your eyelashes kill me
Protect me from yourself (sweetcheeks)
About dancing to “Taht Il Shibbak”…
This is such a fun song to dance to! Now that you know what it’s about, you can really get your innocently flirty attitude on when you perform to it. An Arab audience would definitely enjoy and appreciate that! “Taht Il Shibbak” is one of Dina’s signature songs. This song is in a beladi style, meaning it has a laid back, casual feel, but is not strictly in the “beladi progression” musically in many recorded versions.
The Original Version
Tahia Carioca in the 1946 movie, “Labaat el Sitt”