Yeheskel Kojaman was born in 1920 in Baghdad, Iraq. His family were not particularly religious and in 1940 he became a teacher. He became heavily involved in the Communist Party. After a show trial, Yeheskel and several members of his family were jailed for communist activities on 1945. He was released in 1961 and left Iraq. He joined his wife Habiba, who had been waiting for him in Israel and worked as a translator, writing the first Arabic-Hebrew dictionary. In 1975 Yeheskel and his family moved to London, where he wrote his seminal book on Iraqi music and the maqam; a traditional musical phrase.