Album Release Party for Rumelia at Pyramid Café

Rumelia band members from left, Nicolle Jensen, Sitara Schauer and Deborah Ungar. Photo by Jennifer Esperanza

Staff Report

Rumelia will celebrate the release of their debut album 6-8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 23 at the Pyramid Café in Los Aamos. There is a $10 cover. Children are free. 

Rumelia is a band composed of three women who are putting a new spin on music from Eastern Europe, a region generally known as the Balkans.

The music is unique to the western ear in that it uses odd time signatures (think 7/8, 9/8 and 11/8 for starters), as well as eastern scales (maqam) and tonalities. Rumelia’s repertoire is derived from the traditional and popular tunes of Albania, Turkey, Greece, Macedonia and Bulgaria with a little Sephardic and a lot of Roma (Gypsy) music thrown in for good measure.

Band members include Nicolle Jensen (lead vocals, doumbek, bass doumbek, frame drum and riq), Sitara Schauer (violin, backup vocals, guitar and mandolin) and Deborah Ungar (accordion and clarinet.)

Rumalia has been playing at The Pyramid for about one year and has attracted an enthusiastic local following. One of the things that makes the Los Alamos dates especially fun is the participation of local folk dancers. You don’t have to know the steps to enjoy Rumelia’s music however.

This event is a great opportunity to discover Rumelia. The band will be giving away custom Rumelia buttons with each CD purchase as a special gift for the release party.


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