Being half Palestinian and half Bulgarian (full bio), I grew up hearing a whole mixture of music styles, in a whole range of languages. I listened to Pink Floyd and played along on my guitar, I listened to Lebanese singer Marcel Khalife and his Oud, I listened to traditional Bulgarian music and tried to understand the harmonies and count the odd beats, I listened to Israeli pop on the radio, to Spanish Julio Iglesias whom my mom adored, French chansons, Russian revolutionary music and more...
I guess all these influences shaped my musical taste and poured into my repertoire in one way or another, although I did not always allow this to happen.
When I was a teenager, I turned my back on Arabic and Bulgarian traditional music, because I wanted to be hip and what I believed “up to date”, I wanted to be rocker! So I had a rock band, and I even held an electric guitar in the concerts, and shaved my head. When I started going to Rimon school, which is a school for Jazz and modern music, I remember my teachers were really excited about the prospect of me bringing the traditional touch into the jazz, and I kept failing them. I wanted to be like everyone else, to blend in, not to get caught in what I perceived as the “margins”.
How stupid and immature I was !
It took some time, but with the years, and with the calming down of my rebellious soul, the different influences started coming back into my music, and today I consider them my blessing. Today, I enjoy the different layers and the variety of sounds and languages. I am no longer looking to belong to some mainstream, and am fascinated with the World Music niche, which is far from being marginal, and actually enriches my life on a daily basis.
In the video, a mix of a Palestinian Mawal (vocal acapela) and a Bulgarian traditional song.
Sorry for the quality, but I hope you enjoy!
Come to my show this Friday for more fusion music. Go to fb EVENT. Or check out my CALENDAR.