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Musician Directory


Location: Kelowna/Vancouver BC Canada

Bio: ALTARAB ls a Canadian group playing classic songs of the Middle East. They have played various restaurants and theaters in Western Canada.  They are available for weddings, parties, concerts, club venues and corporate events.  They can perform principle entertainment or shows with Bellydancers. The group includes Elias Matar on oud and vocals, Trevor Salloum on Arabic percussion and friends. Contact: Trevor Salloum (250)763-3951



Carmine is an accomplished instructor, teaching doumbek both nationally and internationally. His students compliment his lively and engaging teaching style and his ability to make complex technique and intricate rhythms easy to learn. Located in New York City, Carmine is a member of several music ensembles including Middle Eastern fusion group “Djinn.” Carmine’s music has been featured on several CDs and DVDs as well as prime time T.V. shows.

Casey with Raquy Drum
Casey Bond

Location: Freeport, NY – United States
Bio: “Bringing the doum to the room!”

Percussionist Casey Bond performs on bass doumbek and doumbek and teaches her signature “no frills percussion” classes and workshops.

Her stage show/ festival credits include BDA produced Cirque Arabesque, Golden Fest, Rakkasah East, Spring Caravan,   Festival of the East ,Maryland Fairy Festival, Beltane in the Park, Night of 1000 Goddesses and the The Cloisters Medieval Fair.

Performs regularly with the best belly dance bands in NYC and Long Island! Her band credits include::

Scott Wilson & Efendi, Baharat and Carmine & Friends (led by Carmine T. Guida), Pangia, Eastwinds Tribal Drumming , Jerry Bezdikian Ensemble and The Scheherezade Project .

Casey’s unique teaching method, “no frills percussion”, is ideal for novice drummers and drum-curious dancers! More info about classes and her student drum group “Raq Steady” at

Contact Casey at or friend her on Facebook!



George Rizk

Location: Boston MA & Providence RI – United States

Bio: George Rizk is a master percussionist from Lebanon. He has performed all over the world, with internationally acclaimed oriental dancers such as Nadia Jamal, Houeida el Hachem, and Samara. He is the featured drummer on Nourhan Sharif’s cd, Lebanese Rhythms Vol. 2. George is a dancers drummer, in very high demand all over New England.


Marty Steel

Location: Lakewood, CA 90713
Bio: Smarty Pans provides the best in steel drums, steel drum pans, hand pans, steel drum mallets, steel drums sheet music, steel drums stands, steel drum cases, steel drums accessories, steel drum tuning, steel pan tuning & more!


Location: Astoria, New York City-United States

Bio: Without sugarcoating or anything I’m simply a natural born Tabla “Doumbek” player and composer. I’ve been playing the Tabla ever since I could move my fingers. I’ve learned playing the Tabla throughout my entire life being exposed to so many professional and the not so professional players, so I sort of seen it all. I have to admit though that being born and raised in the streets of Cairo, Egypt made me who I’m today. Especially in a neighborhood like Embaba which I still take a huge pride in, where everyday there was a different wedding party waiting to happen in the streets and there was me that young kid looking at nothing but the Tabla player and his hands “only his hands by the way”LOL.

Coming to the states at age 14 has also influenced me in so many ways. I was exposed to all other kinds of music than the middle eastern ones which broadened up my perceptive and knowledge of music in general. At this point I discovered the beauty of percussion and beats from all sorts of music and saw the common ground that unite so many people through beats.

I’ve been playing all over Cairo for Egyptian and non Egyptian audience integrating middle eastern beats into Rock and dance rhythms and now New York City my second home. I have been playing and mixing Tabla beats to dance tracks and even with samba dancing which is an amazing experience watching people from the opposite sides of the planet enjoying one beat. However just playing the tabla solo or for a belly dancing performance is just PRICELESS. It’s any tabla player’s fantasy and joy to see people watching him up close clapping and dancing to every Dom and Tek he makes. New York City has no idea what’s going to hit it , because I won’t stop till everyone jumps out of their seats and move.

Marwan “The Teacher”

Through the years I’ve met a lot of people from all over the world who have been fascinated by Tabla. And I can’t blame’s a magical instrument that talks straight to the heart. And that’s always my approach in sharing the experience with others. If you have a percussion sense in you, then you already know how to play Tabla. My philosophy in teaching is way beyond knowing and mastering the basic middle eastern rhythms, But to be able to relate and play along to any and I mean ANY beat you hear. I always say “if you’re not having fun, you ain’t doing it right ” so be ready to play solo anytime ;-)

Facebook: Marwan Tabla Percussionist

Middle-Earth Ensemble

Location: San Diego, CA – United States
Bio: The Middle-Earth Ensemble is a San Diego based group that performs music for belly dance and other festive occasions at many local venues. Their gypsy-infused sound has fueled the hips of many a belly dancer in the Southern California area, and has led to their popularity in San Diego . The musicians derive their influences from many different styles, including Arabic, Persian, Turkish, folk, jazz, classical, rock and improvisational music. The music of Middle-Earth Ensemble represents a unique fusion and blending to create their original sound.

Nate Middleton

Location: Hollywood, CA – United States

Bio: Nate Middle – Steel Drummer Entertainer for solo, duet or Steel Drum Band performances, providing the best in Steel Drum Live Entertainment in Los Angeles, Orange County and throughout Southern California.



Location: Mt Shasta, CA – United States
Bio: Pangia
Pronunciation: pan-‘jE-&
Usage: geographical name
Hypothetical land area believed to have once connected the landmasses of the southern hemisphere with those of the northern hemisphere. The name expresses our desire to play music from all around the world for everyone!

Pat Olson began studying the ‘oud with John Bilezikjian in 1992 and has been performing World & Middle Eastern music ever since. He has been involved in the World of Belly Dance since 1990 performing at private and public engagements all over Northern California & the West Coast accompanying Denise for her dancing & as the group “PANGIA”. He has performed at all of the RAKASSAH East Festivals & in New York City. For the last 8 years, over the New Years’ holidays, Pangia has performed shows in Mexico City, Mazatlan & Acapulco, Mexico. Pangia has performed on a regular basis at RAKASSAH West Festivals in California and Spring Caravan in Somerset, NJ. “PANGIA” has been the featured band for seven years at the El Morocco Restaurant in Pleasant Hill for the annual “After Party” following the nationally recognized “Belly Dancer of the Year Competition. Pangia has been the featured entertainment at the Mt Shasta Fourth of July Race/Walk for many years; the largest small town foot race in North America.
Pat is an accomplished vocalist , guitarist, sound & lighting tech, having performed in many musicals, vocal jazz groups as well as toured all over the world with a performing group demonstrating his many talents. He collects, builds, repairs and plays many different instruments and has written several pieces of original music for Belly Dancing . In addition to his First CD: released in 2002, his second CD: PANGIA, VOL 2 was released in March 2003,Volume 3 in March 2005 ,DREAMS-VOL 4 released in March 06. WEST of EAST, vol 5 was released March 16, 2007. Edges of Tradition, Vol 6 was released in March, 2008. Pat also arranges, records and mixes music at his studio ’41 degrees North’. Pat also builds homes and currently creates custom stone and granite countertops

Denise, is the Keyboard & Zil player for “PANGIA” and was the co-founder of the original and award winning Troupe Mandala. Currently, the Director of Troupe Mandala, California, she has danced, taught workshops & played keyboards & zils all over the West Coast, as well as the East coast and for the past eight winters, performed in Mexico, along with OUD player Pat Olson.
She has presented quality Shows & Workshops in both Shasta & Siskiyous Counties, sponsored by the Arts Councils & teaches classes locally at College of the Siskiyous. Denise also teaches workshops along with Pat for the Rakkassah Festivals West, East & Spring Caravan.
The co-producer and artistic director of PANGIA’s 6 CDs., in her “spare” time, she is a free lance writer for several Belly Dance Publications, designs & creates costumes,grows prize winning herbs in her organic garden, and likes to cook and SCUBA dive, but not simultaneously!

Carmine is an accomplished instructor, teaching doumbek both nationally and internationally. His students compliment his lively and engaging teaching style and his ability to make complex technique and intricate rhythms easy to learn. In addition to playing on 4 of Pangia’s CDs, Carmine is a member of several music ensembles including Middle Eastern fusion group “Djinn” and traditional music group “The Turkish Band Camp All Stars”. Carmine’s music has been featured on several CDs and DVDs as well as prime time TV. shows. Carmine is ‘dancer friendly’ and we enjoy recording and performing with him


Rami Tabla

Location: New York City-United States

Bio: Rami El-Aasser plays darbukah, riq, and bendir at concert halls, clubs, theatres, studios, and festivals world-wide.  Based in New York, his repertoire include classical and folk traditions from the following regions, Arabic, Greek, Balkan, Turkish, Ladino, East African, and some North African.

Rami is an original member of Raquy & the Cavemen, Alsarah & the Nubatones, and Cafe Antarsia Ensemble, and also performs regularly with Zikrayat, Alhambra, and many New York based traditional, and not so traditional musicians.

He manages the Raquy Drum Store, and teaches regular rhythm and technique classes at BellyDance America