Athens, Pennsylvania, USA

Hejira is one of Seattle’s most creative, unique
and appealing World Music ensembles.

Hejira blends Middle-Eastern and
Western music to bring audiences a
unique and appealing sound.

Hejira music not only entertains, but also educates
audiences about the diversity of music, dance & culture.

...Petra Martin. South Whidbey Commons


H e j i r a - O r i g i n a l W o r l d M u s i c :

Global jazz w/ethnic threads & open chords !

Don Baragiano composes and performs a very unique brand of world music. This music is in Arab minor scale (Hijaz). He’s usually accompanied by a Middle Eastern percussionist on dumbek, a belly dancer & sometimes a vocalist.

Hejira has performed at many world music and international culture festivals throughout the Pacific Northwest, as well as in New York City, Sedona, Phoenix, Colorado City, Cincinnati, Bloomington, and more.

Mr. Baragiano is the Founder/Composer/Leader for the group. He studied music theory at Aiken High School in Cincinnati, Ohio, and attended the University of Cincinnati's College Conservatory of Music.

For three years Don lived in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia immersed in their culture where he was an audio engineer with the ministry of finance. Don's long-time love of world music was solidified when he was invited to a private audience/master class with HRM King Faud's master musician, Hamzah Mohammed Al-Bashir.

When Don returned to the States, he joined the New Europa Troubadours and toured with them for 5 years. In 2001 he moved to Seattle and formed Hejira. He’s recently moved to the Ithaca, NY area.


The prestigious Aaron Copland Foundation has accepted Don Baragiano for his original music compositions. Mr Baragiano is an American composer who has lived abroad and now brings his cross-cultural experiences back for Americans to experience.

As part of the selection process for this grant, he had to provide the committee with recommendations from people who had seen/heard his performance. Here are some:

Narayan & Janet Baltzo
Rockin', soulful, jazzy songs filled with positive vibes! Vocals, keyboards, trumpet and Hammond B-3
Greater Seattle Area
"Don is a world class composer. He also teaches as he performs.
The joy in his music bubbles out and directly effects the audience."

Dennis Zyvoloski
Music Coordinator at Salmon Bay Eagles
Greater Seattle Area
"I hired Don to deliver World Music for the enjoyment of my club and the music was unique and powerful. All who attended were greatly impressed. I would hire him again, but he moved to the other coast! Best wishes to him and his future endeavors."
Service Category: music director
Year first hired: 2012 (hired more than once)
Top Qualities: Expert, Good Value, Creative

John Gorski
Greater Seattle Area
"Don is a brilliant guitarist and composer. I wrote a lyric for one of his original pieces of music - "Towers Are Burning" in 2008 from a concept he provided then. I enthusiastically endorse him as a composer, musician and guitar teacher who is always prepared and shows up on time."

Jon Scherrer 1st
Founder/Director, Seattle Teen Music
Seattle Teen Music is dedicated to supporting youth and young adult music. We believe that music and the arts are vital to growing a creative community and that starts first with our youth.
Greater Seattle Area
"Don is an old soul on a young man's journey to educate and bring the joy of music and culture to all. I had the fortunate opportunity to work with him on a few gigs and a longtime (32 year old) Seattle music festival and enjoyed every minute of it. Don is a great artist in that he incorporates his love and passion of music along with opportunities to teach. He is comfortable fitting the level of teaching to the audience. In some cases he would dive a bit deeper into some of the middle-eastern constructs of what he was playing to help our teen musicians understand the roots of what they were hearing, and in other cases he delivered an awesome concert where the focus was on the performance.

Don also is an open thinker and collaborator when it comes to problem solving and building ideas and programs that focus on making a difference. We collaborated on several projects that had a meaningful impact on Seattle's youth and music scene. He is an awesome addition to any program, project or festival and really wish he was still in Seattle -- our loss."

Chandra Naraine
Founder at FingerArts/FingerWorks, Inc
Greater Seattle Area
"Don is a talented and creative composer, arranger and musician with whom I enjoyed an enjoyable and rewarding tenure. Don's experience also as an Manager/Promoter was always professional, friendly and courteous, qualities which assured good relationship in all his endeavours."

Mark Vossler
Medical Director at Eastside Cardiology Associates
& Blues Guitarist
Greater Seattle Area
"Don is not only a top notch composer and performer but a great teacher as well. I took guitar lessons from him and learned a great deal. He has excellent knowledge of technique and theory and a very flexible manner."
Service Category: teacher
Year first hired: 2011
Top Qualities: Great Results, Personable, Expert

Danny Raynes
Composer, arranger, performer at Raynee Productions
Greater Seattle Area
"Don does odd meter brilliantly, which is really cool, and very rare. Also does amazingly creative scales. I hear microtonal in standard modes. I admire his work."

Su Nelson
Reemployment Specialist
& Belly Dance Instructor/Troupe Leader
Everett, Washington
"Don is that rare musical artist who is not only innovative and talented, but a delight to work with in every phase - from scheduling to negotiating to performing. He has performed for our non-profit organization at the biennial Arab Festival and it was my pleasure to hire him more than once."
Service Category: Music
Year first hired: 2007 (hired more than once)
Top Qualities: Good Value, High Integrity, Creative

A Gordon
Photoshop instructor at continuing education
Greater Seattle Area
"He is also personable, knowledgeable and on time with a stellar precision. If you are looking for original creative world music, well composed and energetically delivered, this is your man. I would recommend Don for a magical wonderful experience of 'take me away music' Into the flow of ear candy."
Service Category: Entertainment
Year first hired: 2010 (hired more than once)
Top Qualities: Great Results, High Integrity, Creative

Cliff Bickford
Senior Recruiter at Self Employed
& Master Blues Slide P

Set List

Hejira Set List –  2015

1. Hejira
2. Love is a Miracle
3. 9/8 Karshlama
4. Night in Budapest
5. Miserlou (traditional, our arrangement)
6. Brazilian Breeze
7. Under a Crescent Moon

8. Flight of Mohammad

9. Andalusian
10. Garoon (traditional, our arrangement)
11. Persian 6/8
12. Major Distraction
13. Zaar (spiritual cleansing)
14. Keep Walking (Reggae - w/Rumi Lyrics)
15. 7/4 Eastern European tune
16. Al-Hambra
17. Moroccan Roll

18. Trance-Fusion

19. Collision Theory
20. Raq of Gibraltar
21. New York to Seattle
22. 911
23. Let Yourself (w/Rumi Lyrics)

Hejira means; 

1 - starting off on a new path or direction,
2 - a flight or journey to a more pleasant or desirable place.
Inspired by the 2 years Don lived in Riyadh Saudi Arabia. 

He'd hear the minarets blasting out 'prayer call' 5x/day.