Bio

Oliver Rajamani

Rajamani’s natural talent for music was passed on from his family. Rajamani grew up singing and playing instruments at his family daily prayers and was encouraged early on by his family to continue developing his musical talents.

Rajamani studied tabla at an early age. His most recent tabla guru is tabla Pandit “Aloke Dutta”. While going through Friends World College in New York, Rajamani took western classical voice lessons and performed in many choirs and orchestras (notably The New Found Sound – directed by Shirley Gutmann). He also sang Broadway show tunes for weddings in his treasured tuxedo suit. He trained under Snighdha Mishra for Hindustani and Bamathi Sudharshan for Karnatic classical vocal music of India.

Rajamani worked in the United Nations Romani Congress under Hungarian Roma “Shandor Balogh” in guidance of Romani Scholar and Romani UN Ambassador Dr. Ian Hancock. Rajamani lived in Greece and Israel working on Romani and Dom community situations while taking time to learn Middle Eastern music with the nomadic Bedouins in the Negev desert.

Rajamani’s experience in flamenco comes from years of performing and spending time around Flamencos (notably Arturo Martinez).

Rajamani was very fortunate to receive a scholarship to attend the well known “Kodaikanal International School” in South India as well as “Friends World College” an international Quaker education program operating out of New York.

Kodai school changed Rajamani’s whole life and set him on a path different from the average Indian. Kodai school’s international staff and student body widened Rajamani’s musical and worldly mind. Here he studied Western classical music, performed in many jazz ensembles, rock bands, and choir -under the guidance of Keith Dejong, Alfred and Bonnibell Pickard, Peggy Jenks. He also toured in southern India as a teenage rock drummer playing with Canadian travellers John and Sandra Holmes in their group “Giant John and The Texas Bull Frogs. Friends World College allowed Rajamani to travel around the Globe and study as an apprentice under professional musicians, human rights activists, environmentalist, sociologists, and spiritualists. The “Kodai” and “Friends” education prepared Rajamani for his journey as a pioneer of cultural music guiding him musically, culturally, linguistically, and spiritually to connect with audiences globally.