Macedonian and Balkan Folk Music

Michael Lawson


Photo ©2013 by Tom Marks

Michael Lawson began playing accordion for his college folk dance club in 1973 and since then has played for parties, festivals and weddings in the International Folk Dance Scene on the West Coast as the band leader of Nišava, Balkan Cabaret and Kafana Republik. Michael has been on staff for the East European Folklife Center Mendocino Balkan Music Camp, Stockton Folk Dance Camp, Mendocino Folklore Camp, Oregon's balkanalia! camp and Port Townsends' Voice Works workshop. In 1995, Michael traveled to Bulgaria to study accordion, and in 2013 he appeared in the movie Taži Baba/This Grandmother, accompanying the singer Penka Enčeva.

Michael is currently the director of the Bulgarian Voices of Seattle, a choir of Bulgarian women who perform the songs of their home country. He is also the “Osem” of the Balkan duo Osem i Devet (with David “Devet” Bilides)