Baladi Raqs


Mostafa Sax is the best in Baladi music.  The music has become more sophisticated, and instruments like the accordion and saxophone began to be used early at the turn of the century.  There are more steps in Baladi than folk.  The elbows are heavy, with arms tending to frame the heart and hips or placed over the head.

The musical traditions of the Middle East have been adapted by Yuma, AZ-formed and Portland, OR-based band, Brothers of the Baladi. Combining traditional instruments with Western instrumentation and singing in seven languages, the group uses Middle Eastern sounds to create a unique, highly rhythmic dance music, Raqs Baladi is a social dance performed for fun and celebration by men and women of all ages.

Baladi music consists of several distinct sections, although not every piece of Baladi music has all the sections. Musicians, as well as dancers, typically improvise within a loose framework, which makes the style truly original, Raqs Baladi refers to a particular style of belly dancing. The term translates to "native dance" or "country dance" in Egyptian Arabic. Raqs Baladi is most known to be an Egyptian folk dance. Baladi is the most ancient form of Egyptian solo dance.


Baladi Costumes:

One of the most traditional Baladi costumes is called "Asuit".  Asuit has pieces of metal in it and is very heavy.  A hip scarf is also worn.  The dress has slits in the sides, under the knee which may be coined.