Gypsy Surf with Lamajamal in Chicago this Summer

Lamajamal combines of a wide variety of musical styles, instruments, rhythms and songs into one universal expression that displays musically how specific traditions from around the world can harmonize with each other. Their current sound is influenced by music from the Balkans, Turkey, North-Africa, and the Middle-east, as well as Afro-Cuban and Afro-Peruvian music and a touch of the 1960’s "Surf Sound." During a live set, Lamajamal takes the listener on a musical journey with the following destinations: Bulgarian folk dances, Turkish/Anatolian melodies, Moroccan music, Classical Arabic/Egyptian music, Balkan Gypsy marching band songs, Greek dulcimer melodies, and an Afro-Peruvian percussion/vocal classic.

Recent recordings reflect a style that the group is calling "Gypsy Surf." This sound emerged when the group started using more electric guitar and drumset in their recordings. With the modern ‘Fender reverb’ guitar sound adding support to the clarinet, sax, and dulcimer, the snaking gypsy melodies took on the sound of 60’s surf music. (similar to how the Greek melody, ‘Miserlou’ was interpreted by Lebanese descended Dick Dale, and other ‘surf’ bands in the 60s). … ‘Gypsy Surf’ is how Lamajamal will take the listener on a journey, "surfing" through a variety of gypsy melodies from all over the globe!

This band has had two incarnations: The first was a 3 piece band consisting of Ronnie Malley, George Lawler, and Joey Spilberg. This group made a recording of classical Arabic, Morrocan, Afro-peruvian and original music, and promptly went on an improvised European tour using CD sales as their ‘tour support.’ Realizing that the European market was much more supportive of ‘world’ music than the USA, they took the opportunity to further their connections in Europe by sending Ronnie back to Paris. In the meantime……back in Chicago Lamajamal grew to include two more musicians and long time friends; Eve Monzingo, a clarinetist, flautist, and sax and dulcimer player who is well versed in Greek, Balkan, Arabic, Klezmer music as well as ‘Gypsy’ music in general; and guitarist/chordophone specialist and percussionist, Gary Kalar, a ‘world musician’ specializing in Turkish, Arabic and Andalusian muisic. The four songs on this site were recorded by George, Eve, Gary and Joey on a 2 input soundcard while Ronnie was in Paris.

Finally in June 2006, the group will be united and will start a new recording project. With all members together, and an expanding studio, the group is anxious to see what new sounds will develop. Armed with new recordings, European connections, as well as management/inspiration provided by Nicole Sieczka, Lamajamal plans on establishing themselves as an internationally renown name in the world music market.

June 17th Chicago
Members of Lamajamal will be performing during Taste of Randolph for the Summer Solstice at the West Loop Art Market (Landmark Gallery) 841 W. Randolph. Chicago, IL, 5pm

June 17th St Maur des Fosses, France
Festival en plein air-Courts dans l’Herbe
Annual film festival just outside Paris where you can enjoy a day of film, art, and great music from around the world.
Members of Lamajamal will begin at 4:30pm

June 28th Chicago
Lamajamal is excited to play with the
Goran Ivanovic Group and Tom Wright
at Martyr’s 3855 N. Lincoln Ave., 8pm
Ticket Price:$7, 21 & Over Only
General Admission

For more info on Lamajamal or booking please visit

Lamajamal on

Author: xaaaji