Next, we give a description of music and its classification and have a look at traditional Iranian music by Ahmad Feily:

For more than 2,000 years, the West and the East have recognized the power of music to evoke emotion where those concerned about government security considered music as a threat. But it is very difficult to explain how music has such an effect on us. It is not difficult to understand the reason for this. The oldest and most common Western theories of art consider art to be an imitation of nature. But music is not entirely consistent with this definition. Music is not able to represent shapes and colors or describe the world in words, and its ability to imitate sounds that exist in the natural world is insignificant. But this incomprehensible and non-imitative art form, which is a collection of systematic sounds, provides a certain number of aesthetic experiences that are valuable in different aspects.

From feeling pleasure to the aesthetic experiences that lead to impact our personality deeply and take us to unparalleled levels. What kind of art is this?

The aesthetic theories of music that answer this question fall into two general groups; theories that support the Dependency of music and explain the aesthetic value of music in terms of its relationship to something other than music, and this is usually a feeling.

Theories about independence which do not consider the aesthetic value of music to be dependent on something outside of music, but on the inherent characteristics of music

Music classification

Music is categorized by different concepts.

According to the era of art genesis:

Medieval music

Renaissance music

Baroque music

classic music

Romantic music

Modern music

Contemporary music

According to the phonological structure:

Quanta tonic (music with separate notes with musical gaps)

Stream Tonic (music without intervals – music with continuous notes)

According to the scale structures:

Chromatic scale

Diatonic scale

According to the number of notes per scale:

Pentatonic or five-tones (like Japanese music)

Monotonic or single-tone (such as some single-note instruments played in some military trumpets or whistles)


According to the rhythm:

Percussion-free music – is that it does not have an obvious meter, as exemplified by some songs of Iranian music.

Rhythmic music is music that is metered, such as songs made for dance, march, etc.

Largo (very slow)

Adagio (slow)

Swallow (very quick)

Allegro (quick)

Andante (Normal)


According to the region of the art genesis:

Folk music

Regional music

Oriental music

Western music

Iranian Music

Arabic music

Flamenco music

Country music

(And many other areas)

According to the semantic-verbal origin and social place:

Religious music

Ritual music (for example, mystical music or Sufi music, wedding music or mourning music)

Blues music

Pop music

rock music

Metal music

Kid music



According to the priority of the vocalization or instrumental music:

Verbal music

instrumental music

According to the practical aspect:

Music therapy such as music in the south of Iran or music for relaxation and meditation

Dance music

film music

Military Music (March)

In terms of composition (orchestration) and phonetics:

Solo Music

Symphonic music

Opera music





Percussion music

Archery music (such as string quartet, blowing instruments)

Vocal music (vocals) – such as the works of the Tehran Vocal Orchestra or the Church Choir

According to music form:







Leitmotiv (leitmotiv meaning leader or indicator song)

According to Dastgah or Maqam:

For Iranian traditional music, seven Dastgahs are listed along with 5 notes, such as Mahour, Shoor, Bayat Turk Dastgah. Each Dastgah can have a number of “corners”. There are also 12 Maqams in Iranian music

Old Iranian music

From the fourth to the ninth century AH, Iranian music was in a good place. Most scientists and philosophers in their books and treatises have devoted a topic to music. Among them are Abu Nasr al-Farabi, Bu Ali Sina, Safi al-Din Ermavi, QutbuddinShirazi, and Abdul QadirMaraghi. In the old books of Iranian music up to the ninth century AH, the words “maqam”, “pardeh” and “shadd” have been used. In ancient Iranian music, the letters of the alphabet were used to name the Pardeh or notes, and there were also twelve main Maqams, which are:

1- Oshaq 2- Nova 3- Boslik 4- Raast 5- Hosseini 6- Hejaz 7- Rahvi 8- Zangoleh 9-Iraq 10-Isfahan 11-Zirafkand 12-Bozorg

These twelve Maqams were performed from seventeen degrees or themes or tonalities. In addition to the above-mentioned Maqams, there were 24 branches or corners, which are:

1- Dugah 2- Sehgah 3-Chahargah 4-Panjgah 5-Ashira 6- Nowruz Arab 7- Mahour 8- Nowruz Khara 9-Bayati 10-Hesar 11-Nahoft 12-Uzal 13-Ouj 14-Nirz (Neyriz) 15-Mubarqa 16-Rakab 17-Saba 18-Homayoun 19-Zavol (Zabol) 20-Isfahanak 21-Bastenegar 22-Khozi 23-Nahavand 24-Mohayar

Iranian music in the pre-Islamic period during the Sassanid period included songs attributed to “Barbad” including “Haft Khosravani”, “Thirty Tones” and “Three Hundred and Sixty Hands”, which are consistent with seven days a week, thirty days a month, and three hundred and sixty days a year. In the court of KhosrowParviz, in every music program, there was a special order for performing songs. Hakim NezamiGanjavi has prosed the thirty tones of Barbad in the poem “Khosrow and Shirin”.

At The post-Islamic period, there was also a music program called “Nobat”, which included “Qol”, “Ghazal”, “Taraneh” and “Froudasht”. In the time of Abdul QaderMaraghi, the word “Qete” was used, which is synonymous with the word “song”.