Ishtar - The Musician's Musicians and the Belly Dancer's Muse


If you're a musician, if you're a dancer, if you're a lover of  music, magic and inspiration then take note: ISHTAR IS COMING!  Mark it - July 16th at The Rohs Street Cafe with Keshvar Project in Cincinnati.  Heading west from their hometown of Pittsburgh. They hail themselves as "vintage bellydance musicians"  with a sound that ranges far and wide: Dick Dale (yeah!) , il Troubadore, Keshvar Project (they said it not me) KAGERO, Animus.....I've seen 'em and I've heard 'em in their hometown of Pittsburgh.  They are an engaging band...., yes engaging is what I would say, along with masters of their musical passions playing with intricacy, depth, fluidity, power......and so in tune with dancers that it's a tight, cool partnership.  If you're a belly dancer, of any style, you've got to come for this unique experience to rise in the moment and let their music tickle your shimmy gear. undiscovered jewel of beauty, diversity and coolness I have to say, let's make them welcome in the Queen City of the West. 

And speaking of Pittsburgh....

We know of Ishtar for many reasons, not the least being that they hosted us on part one of the Keshvar Project's 2012 springtime Cherry-Pitt Tour.  The memories are clear, moving and wonderful.  We hadn't been out on the big road for a while......we'll, maybe it hasn't been that long ago but this tour had us stretching our legs with new members, new babies and new Keshvar Projectness - what an adventure!.  From in-the-house newbie Katheryn to Ashley on a stick (see Cherry-Pitt Tour pictures for a visual explanation of that....) it was all great and fantastic.


istanbul-KP-venue-march 2012

Part one of the tour started in Pittsburgh performing with Ishtar at the Istanbul Grille. The room was a perfect combination of performance space, lounging room and restaurant.  The storm blew us in and we caught them, it seemed, unaware - with our big skirts and choreographed ensemble pieces we brought a colorful, big show to Pittsburgh.  The audience stood by us as Lily roared, fans were thrown and the sweat left us gasping.  We packed in a lot that night. Ishtar followed playing for solo dancer after solo dancer, playing like they were enchanting the cobras - they get right in there.  Fascinating!  We all jumped in by the end, both band and dancers, for a groovy finale - which, of course, lasted until the wee hours and traveled to many locales that night.  Dan's drumming was complimented by the Turkish guys, Michael performed hat tricks, the wiccans had green tea and we found the home of amazing oatmeal (yep, amazing oatmeal).   

Washington DC bound, we zeroed in on the small enclave of Greenbelt and the beautiful, beautiful, beautiful people.  This crazy/delightful/friendly/A-rated community was and remains a cooperative community, created and planned during the New Deal Era.  Hence, and therefore, we were booked at the New Deal Cafe.  It was such tiny. itty-bitty space, we did not see how we could do it. We anticipated the worse - skirt blown tabletops, shorten set list, stumbles and bobbles. Stressed and cranky the show started - and we were immediately proven wrong, wrong, wrong!


The Cafe overcame all with the biggest spirits and most passionate audience we may have ever encountered!  The music was right on, the band getting right into the people. And the dancers felt it - tiny as the space was, the crowds we caught the crowds enthusiasm and turned the night into a, into a.....into a Great Time! Really, we were all moved with the participation, laughter, appreciation.........that place, those people rejuvenated us all!  And it was said: "That's what it's all about, man!" What a big, dynamic, fun night!  And the after party just continued the revelations - wine, music and memories.  And relationships that will last forever.  Thanks Greenbelt


So that was it.  We toured DC (an amazing place), we hit the road back (long and hard) and we filed our memories (which keep sneaking out - Michael playing Shady Grove, twinkling lights in the garden, for cynthia, spontaneous flowers, the dancing man with the bottle, Heidi's pushing a new button, sweat drenched dancers wtih smiles that went on for miles.....Thanks Pittsburgh, Thanks Greenbelt.


And one more thing, thanks to our roadies - Lisa, Mike, Henry, Ruby, Courteney, Heather, Richard and Lily - you made it fun and possible.

by Teri Hhhhhhhhhhhhhh


Tribal Yarns

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