World music DJ Cheb i Sabbah, known for his multicultural, multispiritual trance-dance blends and belly dancer-accompanied shows, is in need of help. Sabbah was recently diagnosed with Stage 4 stomach cancer and, like too many American musicians, he does not have health insurance.
But the music and dance scene has rolled out to support Sabbah. Tonight (July 1) and next Friday (July 8), musicians, DJs, and dancers are paying tribute to Sabbah in two separate benefits. The lineup of artists performing at the two events is not only impressively long, but also incredibly international, a testament to Sabbah's multicultural music and background.
But the party just gets bigger. Next week's 6-hour long benefit at 1015 Folsom includes singer Riffat Sultana, who brings together her Indian and Pakistani roots in her Punjabi folk and devotional Sufi songs; and Karim Nagi, Egyptian drummer and folk dancer. DJ Sep from Dub Mission, Janaka Selekta from Gods Robots, and Jimmy Love from Non Stop Bhangra will also be performing that night.
But it's not a party without dancers, and this benefit promises not to disappoint. Fat Chance Belly Dance will spice up the floor with their unique flavor of American tribal-style belly dance, along with the gorgeous tattooed Jill Parker and Kami Liddle. Israeli dancer Miriam Peretz, assistant artistic director of Ballet Afsaneh, will also be performing. The benefit includes a raffle, where you can win a private belly dance lesson.
It's heartwarming to know that in this difficult time, Sabbah's community and friends are rallying hard for him, and these two benefits promise to turn the unfortunate circumstances into fantastic celebrations of Sabbah's life and music.
Tonight (1 July): 111 Minna, 8pm-12am, $15
Next Friday (8 July): 1015 Fulsom, 9pm-3am, $15+