Turkish and Balkan folk music
“The band weave a bristling tapestry that runs the gamut from quiet and moody, to suspenseful and serpentine, to a sort of elegantly feral dancing quality. The material mixes traditional Turkish and Rumeli (Balkan-Turkish) songs as well as originals” – New York Music Daily
Co-sponsored by TAFSUS
Saturday, 25 March, 2017
Concert at 7:30 pm
Calvary Center
801 South 48th Street
(at Baltimore Avenue)
Philadelphia, PA 19143
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With a musical vision that is at once ethereal and grounded, Dolunay flirts with the soundscape of the Ottoman Empire, tracing its migration through Balkan villages, coaxing it across seas and oceans, and grafting it onto a Brooklyn-based backdrop. With an array of original compositions offered alongside renditions of Turkish and Rumeli standards, their music (Turkish for “full moon”) offers listeners an escape from the press of city life. By the light of the moon, bits of the Rumeli soul mingle with the diverse musical and linguistic influences of violinist Eylem Basaldi, oud player Adam Good, and singer/percussionist Jenny Luna to create a sound world that is uniquely New York.

Since 2012, Dolunay has lured audiences with an approach to Turkish and Rumeli musical traditions that pays homage to the diverse musical roots of the Balkan region. Rumeli, a term encompassing the diverse landscapes of Southeastern Europe once under Ottoman influence, evokes a musical mosaic that is enriched by centuries of cultural encounters that traverse the boundary between East and West. Dolunay continues this tradition of musical alchemy as they share their unique interpretations of these works with modern audiences. The music is based in a system of musical modes known as makam, and features songs about people’s homes, their families and lovers, their villages, and overcoming life’s familiar challenges—aspects of everyday life that create a sense of identity against the backdrop of history and the sweep of the mountains.

Jenny Luna’s musical interests have spanned a wide array of genres: she grew up listening to bachata, merengue, and mariachi, and studied classical and jazz voice, but was first exposed to Balkan and Eastern music in college and has evolved into a singer of Turkish, Balkan and Sephardic music. She performs primarily with Dolunay, a trio performing Rumeli urban folk music of the Turkish people across the Balkans. She also sings with Seyyah (Greek & Turkish music) and Alhambra ensemble (Sephardic music). She studied music at Santa Fe University of Art and Design (formerly College of Santa Fe) and currently resides in Brooklyn, NY.

Turkish-born Eylem Basaldi was on the classical track at the New England Conservatory when she rediscovered her passion for Turkish folk music. She is now a member of several ensembles, including Dolunay and Sandaraa, a band that explores a vast repertoire of South & Central Asian material (from Balochistan, Afghanistan and beyond) blended it with the sounds of Eastern Europe, the Balkans, and more. She has performed in venues such as Symphony Hall in Boston, Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center in NY, and has appeared on the Late Night with Jimmy Fallon Show with the Indie Rock band Afghan Whigs. Eylem is also a composer, a violin instructor, and tours widely in the U.S., Europe and the Middle East.

Adam Good has lent his quick ears and musicality to numerous Eastern European and Jazz projects. A graduate of Boston’s Berklee College of Music with a concentration in jazz guitar, he has lived in New York City since 1996. As early as 1994, he developed a parallel interest in Eastern European folk, Greek, and Turkish classical music and is now well-known for his versatility in performing on a variety of stringed instruments including the acoustic bass, tambura, and Turkish ud and Cümbüş. Adam plays in the New York area with groups such as Hazmat, Sukunet, Sideshow (Songs of Charles Ives), and Sheqer and around the United States with Harmonia (Traditional Crossroads CD). He has also toured the country with Macedonian kaval master Angele Dimovski and in 2002 released his Dances of Macedonia and the Balkans (Folksounds Records).

More Information

Band website