Sunday, March 06, 2005


Cairo, March 3

Dear Blog Readers,

I’m sorry I haven’t written in a while. Let me give you an example of what’s been going on here in Egypt.

They want me back on that television show with the girls but we can’t make it, because another televisions channel Orbit TV is coming to Saiid’s studio to interview us and film the rehearsal. Today I’m going to play with the rababa orchestra and then race over to Saiid’s to meet the television crew. The girls are all here. I have so much music to work on for the upcoming concert I don’t know where to begin!

Me and my favorite vegetable

Yesterday was the first rehearsal with Saiid’s troupe. I must say I’m a little intimidated. I arrived at the rehearsal with Saiid and ten drummers were seated around the room holding there instruments ready to play in different sections. There’s basically the dohol section which is a big bass dumbek and the dof section which is an amazing sounding frame drum Everyone was very serious and at attention.

When Saiiid is rehearsing he is a different person – very serious and intimidating. Until this rehearsal it wasn’t clear exactly what we would play and what my role would be, but yesterday I realized that I’m playing the solo part together with Saiiid! (like what I do with Osama) Yikes! We play the intro together and then at some point I play a solo. I can’t describe in words the amazing sound of that big group playing together. They are so tight! Saiid’s arrangements are simple but amazing! Playing that piece was one of the most thrilling things I’ve ever done.

By the way, Saiid has been feeding all of the girls and treating us like princesses. The girls are also having a ball playing with Saiiid’s nephews and adorable five year old son who are all really good dumbek players!

Dumbek Girls Have Arrived!

Playing with Niggum, a GREAT dumbek player

I got to play with an Arabic Big Band the other day

Girls Playing Rali Abui while Saiiid Coaches

My sweet babies,
you are so serious!
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