Sufi Music as a path to Unity – Nusrat Ali Fatah Khan, Omar Faruk Tekbilek and Sukhawat Ali Khan

2 12 2009

Nusrat Ali Fatah Khan (may peace be upon his soul) was sited on a carpet, center stage of Symphony Hall in Boston. His Qawwali singing just brought the audience into ecstasy. Audience members jumped on stage and danced in trance as the Boston police got increasingly nervous. The police ended up shutting down the concert…..The great Nusrat was so large that he needed 3 people to help him stand up and walk off stage.

I will never forget this exciting night in Boston in the early 1990’s, seeing the “Voice from Heaven” singing mind-blowing spiritual “jazz  scat” from the Hindu-Pakistani Sufi tradition. Since that day I have been researching and seeking out the Sufi musical traditions, its philosophy, psychology and mystical teaching. I was very fortunate to meet the great Sufi master musician Omar Faruk Tekbilek in 1996 and to work with him on 2 albums “ONE” and “One Truth” and on two film soundtrack which I composed (“Love of the First Degree” and “Inshallah”). Faruk introduced me to the Turkish Sufi tradition, the poetry of Yunus, and the wisdom of the Mevlavi teaching about the Breath of Life, being an instrument and being empty. Since then I have explored the connection between mystical Jewish teaching ( Kabbalah) and music and the Sufi traditions. These journeys influenced and informed my music with the Yuval Ron Ensemble and with all that I do.  To me, The Sufi path and music have  been one of the major gifts that I got in this life!

In recent years I was fortunate to cross paths with the Qawwali master vocalist Sukhawat ali Khan ( the son of the great Ustad Salamat Ali Khan – may peace be upon his soul). Sukhawat’s voice is featured on my latest release “Seeker of Truth” Cd and on the new DVD “Seeker of Truth” (a concert film plus a behind the scene documentary) – You can hear and see it at the CD’s and DVD’s page at

On Tuesday, December 15, 2009, at 7:30 pm I will be giving a lecture demonstration on Sacred Ecstasy in Hassidic Prayer and Sufi Ritual. It will be a musical presentation on the inner workings of the ecstatic Hassidic music & dance, and the Sufi practice of moving prayer-meditation (Whirling). How one may transcend the limits of reality and reach Unity and why certain music and certain movements are used in the mystical practice, both in the Hasidic-Jewish tradition and in the Islamic-Sufi path. The location is: Valley Beth Shalom: 15739 Ventura Blvd. Encino, CA 91436-2951. Admission is Free. For more information: call 818-788-6000

I hope to see you there!

For more events on Sufi music and poetry see the Calendar Page at

Peace be on you,




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