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Tsifteteli (τσιφτετέλι, Tsifte-teli) is a Greek and Arabic traditional dance, which is basically the same as Çiftetelli, a Turkish traditional dance.

The Çiftetelli appears in many variations in the folk music of Western and Central Turkey. The different compositions based on this popular rhythm each have their own name. In Turkey Çiftetelli has been relegated to wedding music, where Gypsies and Greeks have adopted the upbeat folk rythmns into oriental dancing. Actually, "tsifteteli" in Greece is sometimes (inappropriately) used as a synonim of "oriental dance".

The instrument used in this style of music influenced the name: Çifte-telli (meaning "with double strings" in Turkish language) of the baglama instrument. The strings are tuned an octave apart. The rhythm in Greece is considered a 4/4, with a stress on the first and (surprisingly) on the fourth count, however the more common version of stressing the first and third count is also quite familiar to the Greeks. It can be simple or filled in with many variations, syncopations etc...

Drummers tend to have fun filling in the end of the rhythm in various, sometimes unexpected, ways. It is sometimes used to accompany a taaqasiim (melodic improvisation). Egyptians tend to play simpler version of Ciftetelli than you might find in Turkey and call it "waaHida taaqasiim" or maybe "waaHida kabiir".

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