Our Mission
  Contact Us
  Become a Member
  Youth Ensemble
  Past Events
  Merchandise Table

Nameless Sound was established in 2001 to present the best of international contemporary music and to support the exploration of new methods in arts education

Nameless Sound presents concerts by premier artists in the world of creative music. In addition, Nameless Sound artists work directly with students from Houston’s public schools, community centers, and homeless shelters. Nameless Sound’s educational work helps to nurture a new generation of artists and inspire tomorrow’s creative thinkers

Subscribe to email list



Myspace Youth Ensemble
Arts Houston

Nameless Sound, Art League Houston and MECA present:
Kahil El'Zabar's
Ethnic Heritage Ensemble
Featuring Hamiet Bluiett

Kahil El'zabar 

Friday, February 21st, 2014



1900 Kane Street

Houston, Texas 77007




Kahil El'Zabar (Chicago) - drums, percussion, kalimba, voice
Hamiet Bluiett (New York City) - baritone saxophone, clarinet

Ernest Khabeer Dawkins (Chicago) - saxophones

A true "Renaissance Man" with a style that flows from ancient Africa to the modern world, internationally renowned percussionist and composer Kahil El'Zabar formed The Ethnic Heritage Ensemble after graduating from the school of the AACM (Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians) in 1976.

El’Zabar grew up in a South Side Chicago neighborhood where he heard music in the streets everyday - doo-wop, r&b, gospel, blues and jazz. In 1973, he attended the University of Ghana and studied African music firsthand. "I grew up in a period when African Americans, as a large body, finally started addressing our roots. With African drums there was such an appeal in the way of playing with the hands and the sense of the entire body being involved in the playing of the instrument." With a mastery of a wide variety of instruments, music holds no boundaries for El'Zabar. He has not only played alongside jazz greats such as Dizzy Gillespie and Cannonball Adderly, but was in the bands of Stevie Wonder, Nina Simone (who he also designed clothes for) and Paul Simon. His talents have extended to the cinematic arena, scoring and appearing in three feature films: "Love Jones", "Mo' Money" and "How U Like Me Now". El'Zabar was chosen to do the arranging for the stage performances of The Lion King, he has published a book of poetry and he tailors clothing both for his band and for others. His efforts as a musician, educator, and community leader led to his being named "Chicagoan of the year" in 2004 by the Chicago

The most prominent baritone saxophonist of his generation, Hamiet Bluiett plays with a technical mastery and a solo voice unlike any other. After attending Southern Illinois University-Carbondale and serving in the Navy, Bluiett moved to St. Louis in the mid-1960s, where played with many of the musicians – Lester Bowie, Charles "Bobo" Shaw, Julius Hemphill, and Oliver Lake – with whom he would co-found the musicians' collective known as the Black Artists Group (BAG). Bluiett moved to New York in 1969 where he would join Sam Rivers' large ensemble and play in one of Charles Mingus' last great bands. In December of 1976, Bluiett played a one-shot concert in New Orleans with Murray, Lake, and Hemphill. That group continued to perform and record as the World Saxophone Quartet, which in different formations continues to the present day. Throughout his performing and recording career, Bluiett has led his own ensembles and recording dates, as well as recorded and concertized with a list of musicians ranging from his fellow BAG alums to artists such as Stevie Wonder and Marvin Gaye.  

Ernest Dawkins is one of Chicago's premier jazz saxophonists whose music reflects his extraordinary talent not just as a musician but a composer as well. He has recorded eleven CD's and is the founder and leader of his own group, New Horizons Ensemble. He holds a Masters in Music Education from Governors State University in University Park, Illinois and has studied music at the Vandercook School of Music as well as the AACM School of Music. Dawkins has worked with a myriad of music greats which include: Ramsey Lewis, Muhal Richard Abrams, Lester Bowie, Edward Wilkerson, Jr., Henry Threadgill, Amina Claudine Myers, Anthony Braxton, Jack McDuff, Don Moye, Jerry Butler, and The Dells. As a world-renowned musician, Dawkins has performed in Maputo Mozambique and appeared on local radio and television programs as well as workshops there. He's performed with Zina Nggawana in Pretoria and at the Hugh Masekela Club J&B in Johnanesburg both in South Africa. He is also working as a consultant to The Jazz Club De Maputo in Mozambique. He has composed music for the documentary film "Malcolm" in 1995 under the direction of Alan Siegal. In 1994 he was commissioned to write a three-piece suite honoring Rahsaan Roland Kirk for the King Arts Complex in Columbus, Ohio. Currently Mr. Dawkins divides himself between three residences, Chicago, Durbin, S. Africa, and Paris, France.  He spends his time teaching and performing in these three world-class cities.

Kahil El'Zabar website: http://www.kahilelzabar.net/
Ernest Dawkins on Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ernest_Dawkins
Hamiet Blueit on Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hamiet_Bluiett