Fall 2014
From the Editor

Expanding Our Range

By Julie Lancaster

Now that Kef Times is planned for publication three times per year (May, September and December), we’re delighted to be able to expand the range of subjects addressed and authors featured from our community. Continue Reading

New and Notable

New and Notable

By Kef Times Staff, Fall 2014

New recordings and books by folks in the EEFC community. Names in bold type indicate EEFC Workshop campers, staff, teachers, and other EEFC supporters.

Balkan Letters

By Peter Lyster, Fall 2014

KT-2014_fall_n&n_balkanLettersTraditional Balkan songs and dances sung by Peter Lyster, Tatiana Sarbinska, and Orfeia Vocal Ensemble with fresh, modern arrangements from the creative mind of Koliu Kolev.

This 18-track recording includes performances of Devojko Mari Hubava; Bjah Pil Vino; Aksano, Mlada Nevesto; Jove Malaj Mome; Pitat Me, Mamo, V Selo Momite, and many others.

To order the CD and individual tracks, go to CDBaby.

KT-2014_fall_n&n_dunavaDunava is a Seattle-based Balkan women's vocal ensemble, founded in 2005. This CD features (obviously) a variety of Bulgarian songs—arranged and traditional, instrumental and a cappella. Bulgarian folk songs are at once beautiful, haunting and captivating. They speak of hardships in life and love, but can also be flirty and lighthearted.

This compilation has it all—complex rhythms, close harmonies and that unique Bulgarian vocal sound. Several of these songs were learned at the EEFC Balkan Music & Dance Workshops in Mendocino.

The CD is for sale directly through the CDs page on the Dunava website. Preview and online download are available at CD Baby.

Tazi Baba / This Baba

By Mary Sherhart, Fall 2014

KT-2014_fall_n&n_thisBabaDVDTazi Baba / This Baba is a 30-minute documentary film by Bogdan Darev. It is the story of one grandmother, Penka Encheva, who was an extraordinary traditional singer in her native Bulgaria. She had dreams of becoming a professional singer, but her path led her to become a teacher instead. In 2010, at age 67, she came to America to live with her daughter’s family and help care for her two young grandsons. Penka’s is a universal story of grandmothers from every country across the globe who are divided between here and there, isolated by a lack of English, stuck in suburbs, missing their friends and loved ones back home. However, Penka found a new life with a choir, Bulgarian Voices of Seattle, and is now making her dreams come true. Contact for order information.

This DVD is part of the Songs of Our Families Bulgarian Heritage Project sponsored by the Bulgarian Cultural and Heritage Center of Seattle and produced by Mary Sherhart. Click on the link for more information.

KT-2014_fall_n&n_musaicMusaic (“Music from the Balkans to Tierra Caliente”) is a local band in Humboldt County, Calif. Some of the members have been playing Balkan music together for over 20 years. Musaic has been performing for folk dancing and belly dancers, in coffee shops, and for parties and weddings in this configuration for seven years. Check out the band’s website for samples of music and information about band members.

Songs and dances on the CD include: Gjushevska Rachenitsa, Erev Shel Shoshanim (Yosef Hadar and Moshe Dor), Mazltov, Svadbarski Čoček, Gorani, Imate Li Vino, and many more.

To order, contact Dan Chandler, 436 Old Wagon Rd., Trinidad, CA 95570. Phone: 707/601-6127 or 707/677-3359. E-mail:

Penka Encheva and Friends

By Mary Sherhart, Fall 2014

KT-2014_fall_n&n_penkaEnchevaPenka Encheva and Friends is a 17-track CD recorded at Jack Straw Cultural Center in Seattle. It features Penka singing songs from her native Bulgaria, many from the region of Dobrudzha in northeast Bulgaria.

Guest artists include: Bulgarian Voices of Seattle Women’s Choir, whose 30 members were all born in Bulgaria; David Bilides, kaval and tambura; Aleksandr Eppler, kaval; Michael Lawson, accordion; Hristo Mollov, clarinet; Vladimir Mollov, accordion; Jody Rush, vocals. Order at

This CD is part of the Songs of Our Families Bulgarian Heritage Project, sponsored by the Bulgarian Cultural and Heritage Center of Seattle and produced by Mary Sherhart.


A Tribute to Šaban Bajramović

By Eva Salina, Fall 2014

KT-2014_fall_n&n_sabanTributeNow available for preorder: Eva Salina's first large ensemble recording, a tribute to Šaban Bajramović, the legendary Romani singer and composer from Southern Serbia.

With Šaban’s songs, transformed by an imaginative and capable international collection of musicians, Eva casts off gender and genre, welcoming input from diverse forms of dance music while paying respect to one of Romani music’s all-time greatest voices.

Visit for more information and to preorder.

Bulgarika: Horoto E Vechno

By Kef Times Staff, Fall 2014

Bulgarika_coverLongtime Balkan camp teachers Donka Koleva, Nikolay Kolev and Vassil Bebelekov team up with multi-instrumentalist Varna native Dragni Dragnev on a collection of 12 Bulgarian dance tunes that will get your toes a-tapping. Bulgarika is touring the U.S. this fall, so be sure to catch one of their shows if you can. If you aren't lucky enough to see them live, Donka will gladly hook you up with a CD when the band returns from tour. Email her or call 646/296-4045 to place an order. Listen to track samples here.

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