Wednesday, March 26, 2008


Sudanese Treasures Next Door

There are four beautiful women from Sudan who live next door and I started spending lots of time at their house.

It all started when one of them knocked on my door at 2am to apologize for missing one of my shows and she saw that I was in the middle of giving myself a henna design. The next day I went over to their place and got the full henna treatment, Sudanese style!

First we drank tea in the salon and chatted. When I finished my tea they took me into one of the back bedrooms and smeared henna all over the bottoms of my feet! It felt so good! They also gave me a clump to just grab with my hand!

It takes a few hours to dry and during that time I get the royal treatment, propped up with pillows on the bed. These ladies love smoking shisha, and so while they are keeping me company, there is a constant shisha going. They also burn amazing incense, and keep bringing in coffee and tea and treats. And we have girl talk! You know, girls are really all the same, no matter where, so the conversations always end up on that universal subject – BOYS! They have some amazing henna over there – extremely dark! Oh, and they also keep bringing me presents! I’ve already gotten a bag of Sudanese henna to take home, some Sudanese perfume and a scarf from Ethiopia! By now I’m getting used the Sudanese Arabic which is a bit different from Egyptian, and I’’m having fantasies about going over there next year!

My Three Concerts

Ewart Hall – Cairo

Ewart Hall is a thousand seat concert hall in downtown Cairo, and, el humdelila, my show was packed!

It was one of the best shows I ever had. The band was so tight! And the audience was incredible - I kept on hearing stuff like “Raquy, we love you” and “Raquy Forever” coming from different parts of the audience. I had a wonderful Canun player, ustaz walel mahalawi as a special guest for my samai! He played it so beautifully! I also did something with the bones and something with spinning glow poi in the show!

We got a standing ovation at the end and then my neighbor, eight year old Mustafa came up and gave me flowers!

My friend and collegue Dr. Dave made a fine recording of the show, and I’m planning on releasing it to the public as either a cd or a dvd!

Alex Bibliotheque

The best thing about the Alex show was getting to spend the weekend in Alex! Alex is so nice! We got a hotel right on the corniche and spent hours walking around exploring the markets and ally ways!

The carrot juice in Alex is so sweet I could have sworn that they put sugar inside, but they didn’t! I also broke my veganism for a day and tried some fish – sooooooo delicious! My body was very happy!

We had a group of our friends follow us from Cairo and we all had a blast.

The show at the bibliotheque was nice but not as special as the other shows – it’s hard when your’e playing in a 1700 seat concert hall – even if a couple hundred people show up it sees sad!

Sawy on the Nile

Last night was our show at Sawy and nice outdoor stage on the Nile. My students played as the opening act. They were so cute and excited. For many of them this is the first and last time they will ever perform music on a stage, so it was a special night for everyone. They also brought all their friends and family so once again the show was packed.

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