Wahid – “Alexander’s Regrets”
Wahid is the collaborative project of two master musicians based in the Los Angeles area. Dimitris Mahlis (oud) and Chris Wabich (frame drums, percussion) are known for their versatility, working in a number of projects with artists representing nearly every genre of music. The two have crossed paths many times over the span of their musical careers. After working on a large-scale, jazz fusion project, Mahlis and Wabich struck up a friendship and developed their rehearsals into a serious project where they could explore the full extent of their instruments. By forming a duo, they’ve carved out a terrific understanding with one another which is easy to hear on their new live album, Road Poem.
“There’s something so liberating about a dialogue between two people. The more you play music, the more you realize that there’s an inherent dynamic in ensembles of different sizes. A duo is liberating. You can turn on a dime.” – Dimitris Mahlis
Mahlis is a student of Turkish oud (Middle Eastern lute) master Ustad Necati Celik and writes singing melodies which are rhythmically matched by Wabich’s finely-tuned frame drums. The two cover a lot of ground on Road Poem and draw inspiration from Byzantine modes and the Turkish maqam (scale and melody) system. The tunes develop naturally and build with intensity as they progress. Wahid’s improvisations are impressive and keep the listener engaged as the duo lock into a groove.
“The liberating part of Wahid is also very difficult, and we’re always asking how we can find perfection in this music. Sometimes things start flying around, we get off the ground, and audience members get to an intense spiritual place when we play. And so do we.” – Chris Wabich
Wahid are currently performing on the West Coast, including the Bay Area and Napa, CA. Check out the tour dates and don’t miss the chance to see this fine duo in person.