Beledi – Brahmah – Jamal Mohammed

An exciting new group combining the best elements of Balinese, South Indian, Middle Eastern, Greek, Egyptian and Jazz music.


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Beledi - Brahmah - Jamal Mohammed

The award-winning Beledi Ensemble plays world music combining Greek, Egyptian, and Baltic music. Poovalur Sriji, Jamal Mohamed, Ed Smith and Fred Hamilton comprise the cross-cultural ensemble Brahma. The group was conceived in 1999, by Jamal Mohamed as a project coalescing Jazz with music from the Mid East, India and Bali. Original compositions and unique arrangements of traditional themes are performed on a variety of percussion and string instruments, the core being dumbek, mridangam, vibraphone and guitar. The group has performed in such venues as Southern Methodist University, the University of North Texas, the University of Oklahoma and the Dallas Museum of Art.

Brahma is an exciting new group combining the best elements of Balinese, South Indian, Middle Eastern and Jazz music, featuring four of the most renowned musicians in their respective fields:

Poovalur Srinivasan — South Indian percussion (Mridangum and Kanjira)
Jamal Mohamed — Middle Eastern percussion and flutes
Ed Smith — Vibes and Balinese percussion
Fred Hamilton — Electric guitar, banjo and Hindustani slide guitar

Jamal Mohamed has been a featured artist in many international music events, including festivals in China, Indonesia, Europe, Egypt, Korea, Puerto Rico, Canada and Mexico. Jamal was born in Lebanon and grew up in the Chicago area, where he was exposed to rich blues and jazz traditions as well as the Middle Eastern music he heard at home. Known for his virtuosity on the doumbek, Jamal has incorporated many innovative Jazz and Latin styles with this ancient instrument. He designs and builds many of the instruments he plays and has worked extensively in dance, theater, film, and music therapy.

Sting, Simon Shaheen, Mark O’Connor and Giovanni Hidalgo are among the many artists Jamal has performed with and his music has been featured on recordings for the television documentaries “Ramses the Great”, National Geographic’s “Lions of Darkness”, and the film biography of Robert Johnson, “Can’t You Hear the Wind”, starring Danny Glover and Keb’ Mo’. He has presented percussion clinics at Berklee College of Music in Boston, the University of Hong Kong, the American University in Cairo, Egypt, and the National Institute of Fine Arts in Mexico City. Jamal is currently a percussion instructor and dance musician at Southern Methodist University, Meadows School of the Arts, and performs with the World Music group “Brahma”, the Middle Eastern Jazz ensemble “Beledi”, and the percussion group “D-Drum”.