Back to All Events

SOUL CONNECTIONS Launch Party: ARKAWA’s 6th Album Release

Featuring ARKAWA’s Ethnic Instruments of The World, Columbian Charango Master Jorge Gustavo Rodriguez, Adam Maalouf (percussion) and AJ Block (didgeridoo and guitar)


Join us in celebration of ARKAWA’s sixth production: “Soul Connections.” This album release event will feature two special performances by ARKAWA: a presentation of Ethnic Instruments of The World and a full ensemble playing music from Soul Connections featuring Jorge Gustavo Rodriguez (Columbia), Adam Maalouf and AJ Block.

ARKAWA (JUAN CARLOS AREVALO) is an indigenous multi-instrumentalist, producer, composer and arranger from the town of Pastos, Columbia. More than 25 years of exploration of ethnic music of the world serve as the foundation for Arkawa’s music. Mr. Arevalo has represented his country in international music competitions and at the World Championship of the Arts in Los Angeles, CA won Silver Medal for Best Original Work

Ethnic Instruments of The World is a multicultural presentation of more than 50 native instruments from different traditions of the world. This auditory journey through the cultures of Asia, Europe, the Middle-East and Latin America explores the origin and historical context of these incredible musical instruments.

JORGE GUSTAVO RODRIGUEZ studied at the Conservatory of Music at the University of Cauca-Colombia, where his classical training on guitar soon led him to what would become his main instrument, the charango, in 1989. In the year 2013 he created the project “Gustavo y Su Charango,” accompanied by Harold Giovanni Rodríguez and Iván España, with whom he represented Columbia as the Concert Performer in the 10th International Charangos of The World Festival in Loja, Ecuador in October of 2014. Gustavo is a prolific recording artist and he currently directs the performance group, “Sentimiento and Pueblo.” In April 2015 he represented Columbia in the 11th International Charangos of The World Festival in Rosario-Argentina and in August 2015 he participated as the concert performer in the Second International Gathering of Charango in Cusco, Peru.

ADAM MAALOUF’s musical journey began at the age of 3, and after experiencing a wide range of musical training that included a classical education on the piano and cello, his eyes were opened to the infinite world of percussion. After graduating from Eastman School of Music in 2013, where he was exposed to classical, jazz, contemporary, and a variety world music, Adam based his operations in one of the great musical hubs, NYC, to continue new projects and education. Adam has studied with some of the world's greatest percussionists including Glen Velez, Yogesh Samsi, Rohan Krishnamurthy, Michael Burritt and River Guerguerian just to name a few. Visit Adam at

AJ BLOCK is the director of Didge Project and is active as a didgeridoo teacher and performer. In addition to didgeridoo, AJ has spent years studying music traditions from all over the world with an early focus on jazz trombone. AJ is a founding member of Sacred Arts Research Foundation, an active member of the Golden Drum Community and a student of spiritual teacher Maestro Manuel Rufino. For more on AJ and his work visit