observations and reflections...


Filed under: trip to the middle east
Posted by: @ 5:15 am
Note: I changed servers in 2010 and as a result I took my blog down. On this page I put all my original entries, photos and comments, although you can no longer comment on these entries.

This is the blog of my trip to the middle east. My name is Nick Demopoulos and I am the guitar player with Exegesis. The countries we visited are Bahrain, Yemen, Oman, U.A.E and Kuwait. On this blog are many interesting pictures of our trip. Some of my favorites are of the old citites in Yemen and of the beaches and landscapes in Oman.

feel free to leave comments as well.

02/22/08 last day in bahrain
today is our last day in bahrain. we were treated wonderfully and had an amazing time here. for our last day we mostly did sightseeing and chilled out
we went to the national museum
tomas sometimes thinks he is albert einstein
we went to an old portuguese fort. a remnant from the age of exploration.
at the end of the night we sat in with Northbound, the amazing cover band that has been playing in our hotel. If you are in Manama in the next couple of months make sure you check them out at the Sheraton Hotel. Here is a flick of Exegesis, Northbound and a random bar patron that jumped into the picture.
Next Stop Yemen!
my camera has been acting up, so not as many cool picturers today.
we visited an amazing mosque
our really nice driver mohammed gave us each postcards of paintings he has done.
here is the U.S. Ambassador to Bahrain introducing us at our gig. he is a really nice guy and let us have drinks at his place the night before.
chillin after the concert with some fans.
exegesis and billy banks after the gig. also pictured are britney from U.S. embassy and Mohammed, our driver. Mohammed is so poetic. he said of the whole band: today you played much more beautiful and you looked so gentle from far away.
Today was a really long day. first we went back to the gifted school and did another workshop. we divided the students according to instrument. I tried to teach some guitar players how to improvise over one chord.

then we went to an international school, where the kids spoke great english. they were excited to ask us questions.

then we went to a school for the blind and disabled and played some music and tried to explain a little about what we do.
after we played some local blind piano players played. it was inspiring to hear them play. three of them played, then David Cook played an improvised solo piano piece. it was incredible for me to hear Dave play a solo piano piece inspired by, and incorporating many elements from, the local Bharainian players.
this guy said he loved jerry goldsmith, who happens to be one of my favorite film composers.
then we went to our hotel bar and checked out an amazing cover band from the phillipeans. later on dave, tomas and myself sat in with them, with dave playing some great keyboard bass. the band members felt bad that mike was not with us, as they would have liked to have met him


first day of our program in bahrain
today we did our first workshops in bahrain. first, we did an educational workshop at the Gifted Students Center.

I figure a picture is worth a thousand words, so i might rely heavily on photos for this post. I gave Billy Banks my camera and he took some great pictures. here are some of them. here is Exegesis rocking the house at the Gifted Students Center.

Some of the students at the workshop. They seemed shy at first, but eventually became very talkative and engaging.
a local guitar player with amazing vibrato and phrasing that might be typical of the arabic style.
a band of students about to sit in and impress us with their knowledge of latin jazz.
Exegesis playing at the Bahrain Music Institute, where we gave our second workshop.
We split up and divided the students according to instruments. here is Dave Cook showing some piano players some of his harmonic mastery.
Mike and myself jamming with a young and talented local oud player.

Exegesis posing with the head of the Bahrain Music Institute and a student.

In addition to being a really fun day, I learned much about Arabic musicians, and more about what can make a successful educational experience. hopefully more days will be like this in the near future.
We're Here!

Whats up. Exegesis made it to the middle east intact with all of our gear. We are in Bahrain for the first week. It is really warm and sunny here and I think it is going to be fun teaching and performing for the nice people of this country.

Please click on the link of the country you would like to see the blog of. You are currently at the page for Bahrain Here are all the countries in the order they were visited: