Hegedus'repertoire and playing styles reach outward from Greece and
Turkey into the Middle East, India and beyond. Gari began his
musical career with fiddle and mandolin, and had devoted a decade of
his life to the violin before learning of his ancestral Hungarian name,
Hegedus, meaning “violinist.” Gari’s main instruments are the oud,
violin, saz and mandocello, yet his talent is also proficiently
expressed on many other instruments, including the yaylı tanbur, sarod
and Persian setar. Being largely self taught, with an insatiable drive
for the discovery of new depths and intricacies of playing, he asserts
a distinctive talent for capturing the delicate essence of traditional
music, offering a passionate, heartfelt uniqueness and freedom of
expression. As a composer and performer, Gari has developed the art of
taksim (improvisation) to a deeply soulful level for which he has
become highly recognized.
In addition to performing
with Janam, Teslim, The Helladelics, Eliyahu and the Qadim
Ensemble, Hamed Nikpay, and numerous other Bay Area Balkan ensembles,
he is a luthier. Gari spends many hours making and repairing old
sazes and ouds he finds and coaxing out the true voice of these
treasures. Gari has recorded and performed with the world's foremost
Cretan lyra artist, Ross Daly, and studied with Iraqi oud master Naseer Shamma.
He has toured with the Mevlevi Dervish (Sufi) Order of America and
continues to participate in Turkish ceremonial and devotional
gatherings around the country.
With the Oct 7-21 Tangents
Greece Music Tour
two months off (3 spaces left), I asked Gari to form a
trio that would be in the spirit of Greek or Cretan culture. On this
special evening Gari will be joined by his long time musical partner,
Faisal Zedan, and Elana Brutman (Cretan lyra). As I write, Elana is in
Crete studying with Ross Daly at the Labyrinth school.
And Gari emailed me August 15 to tell
me Stellamara's vocalist Sonja Drakulich will join the group to
sing some Greek and Cretan songs!