Balkan things – I’m just a participant, not an authority.

Orphans of Orpheus - Eureka, CA


Admittedly very amateur, but maybe by now I sound o.k… for an American. I like working with a soloist or small ensemble. In the type of playing I do, drummers more or less follow the tune, rather than furnish a metronomic beat drawn from the repertoire of basic folk rhythms.

The Band Idea

It hardly went anywhere, but the concept is still a pipe dream… “Orphans of Orpheus” folk amateur band – Eureka, CA. Randy Carrico, Larry Levine, and friends. Clarinet, kaval, saxophone, oud, bass, etc… & tupan. Folk dancing and street music. We busked once at the monthly art stroll near the waterfront. After a waltz-like tune, a young woman emerged from the crowd and asked “Was that from Turkey?” Ah, someone noticed.   


I like hanging out with people who try honor the feeling & style, above all else. Sure, legs and agility matter, but ears and heart, and identity and cultural understanding count for a lot. And especially if it’s not your born heritage.

Where’s the Kef?

Blogged for a while on this deep-but-elusive subject. Always happy to encounter the Kef, wherever.

Online services

Previously was the website monkey for Voice of Roma – see Web Work page.

photos of Antika Bulgaria Folk Ensemble & Cultural Club, Bay Area, CA


My various friends and I enjoy playing and practicing, even if only for ourselves. Singled out from a huge repertoire of tunes and styles, attached below are two Bulgarian pravos that pre-pandemic were popular among people I know. If you also learn them, perhaps we can play them together.  Perhaps I'll add a few more.  And yes, we also like to try our hand at Greek, Turkish, and Armenian tunes - because they also move us.