are a Melbourne based ensemble performing
earthy, vibrant, innovative, eastern tinged compositions, with ancient rhythms and cinematic beauty.
Melbourne based Samassin play cinematic original music in a world fusion vein. Samassin released album two; Sin Samas in 2018; six evocative long form works all paying homage to our star the Sun "Samas" (Akkadian language), and our roving lunar companion; "Sin"
Their debut album “Golden Muse”, was released in 2016
Samassin's music is rich with exotic melodies and grooves, each piece a vivid and emotional journey. The sound is richly textured and the members play with passion and energy. Written by composer Kirsty Pittman and beautifully interpreted by the band, these enigmatic highly detailed compositions draw on the influences of jazz, contemporary art music and traditional rhythmic and melodic ideas from the Middle-East and India. The band are also skilled improvisors and each composition also has an improvisatory element.
The music contains overlapping cycles, architecture with moving parts and a sense of temporal transformation.
Formed in 2014, Samassin began playing the intimate venues of the inner north. These venues are still home to us as well as small theatres, house concerts and festivals. They spent June and July 2015 on a Europe tour performing in venues in Istanbul and Berlin
and regional parts of Turkey and Germany.
Kirsty Pittman (Guitar/Vocals) Kirsty is a prolific composer, guitarist and educator, who studied composition at Melbourne Conservatorium of Music with Professor Stuart Greenbaum. Also at MCM she explored modern classical guitar and tango guitar with teachers Ken Murray and Doug De Vries.
Previously she had majored in guitar (BMus) at Melbourne Polytechnic, and cites guitarist Tom Fryer and multi-instrumentalist Adrian Sherriff as encouraging her fascination with Turkish and Arabic drum rhythms and additive cycles in her original compositions, During and after her
studies, she studied Konnokol with Adrian Sherriff and Carnatic Vocals with Shobhar Sekhur,
She has composed and been commissioned to write music for symphony orchestra, big bands, electronics, guitar ensemble, extended chamber works as well as solos and duets. She has composed two studio albums of music for her chamber jazz quintet Samassin
She is also guitarist, co- manager, co- arranger/composer for Melbourne based tango sextet La Busca. This project enables her to deeply study the intricacies of tango guitar. She is also a member of the Melbourne Tango Orchestra with many acclaimed Melbourne tango artists. Members have received regular training from Maestro’s from Buenos Aires. Performance credits include Port Fairy Folk Festival, National Folk Festival, Cygnet Folk Festival, Brunswick Festival, MoNA in Hobart, The Famous Spiegeltent, and the iconic Boite World Music and Paris Cat in Melbourne.
Belinda Woods (Flute/Alto Flute) Belinda is an improvising musician/composer living in Melbourne, Australia. Predominantly a flautist, Belinda performs as a soloist and appears in many ensembles including her own groups Lo-Res (six piece chamber jazz)
A PhD graduate of the VCA, Belinda was the recipient of a 2015 Creative Victoria Scholarship for excellence and a 2009-2012 APRA recipient as well as being selected as a finalist in the 2011 APRA Professional Development Awards. She has been invited to perform in Festivals across Australia, Japan and Europe as well as independently curated events in Melbourne.
Daniel Hoban (Darbuka/Frame drums/Guitar) A founding member of Samassin, Daniel has being performing and music making on guitars, bass and percussion since childhood. A renowned guitar maker and restorer in Melbourne he is an instrumentalist from conception, execution through to stage performance.
Justin Lim (Bass Clarinet/Clarinet) A founding member of Samassin, Justin is a fan of playing in community ensembles including Sinestra (A left handed wind quartet), the Heidelberg Wind Ensemble and Orkestra Glasso Bashalde He is drawn to music that covers the less traversed palettes, and Samassin is a perfect band in which to explore unique ideas.
Gustavo Moreno (Percussion) Gustavo is a musician and drummer originally from Columbia, who is currently working on a variety of musical projects, from live performances, studio recordings, to educational activities and the promotion and organisation of events. He is a teacher of drum kit and percussion, with students across Melbourne.
Previous collaborators include: Claire Johnstone (Violin), Patrick Lyons (double bass),
Volkan Susuzer Flutes/Qanun, Shanti Pradhan (Electric Bass) and Aurora Darby (Vocals)
"Samassin is a Melbourne-based band that takes its inspiration from Balkan, Arabic and jazz traditions. Guitarist and vocalist Kirsty Pittman composes the original tunes while the quartet also features players Justin Lim (clarinet and bass clarinet); Claire Johnstone (violin) and Daniel Hoban (guitar, mandolin and percussion). The sound is rich and textured and the quartet's members play with passion and energy, with each musician equally comfortable soloing or playing as part of the ensemble. Hoban is particularly riveting to watch on the darbuka and frame drum while Pittman's sophisticated melodies paint pictures and stories. The connection between the players is also worth-noting: it's clear that these four know they are creating a special sound. " Cath Ferla
" This will be very special! All their performances here have been magical and we are certain that this one will be no less amazing...don't miss it! "
Dusan, Farouk's Olive (owner) Opa Bato band master