Ali finds his tune again after life changing move

ALI Eibo needs an interpreter to tell his story of how he ended up in Coffs Harbour after he managed to escape the deadly Syrian civil war.

But listening to him play his bouzouki live, and in front of his family, you can hear and see how elated he is to be in Australia.

He has now been living in Coffs Harbour for three months and is doing intensive English classes at TAFE.

TUNING IN: Ali Eibo, better known as Shkaki on stage, is a Syrian refugee settling into Coffs Harbour with his wife and two sons.
TUNING IN: Ali Eibo, better known as Shkaki on stage, is a Syrian refugee settling into Coffs Harbour with his wife and two sons. Keagan Elder

Better known as Shkaki on stage, Ali was a well renowned performer in the district of Afrin on the outskirts of the city Aleppo.

The 40-year-old started performing as a teenager and taught himself how to play the bouzouki, a traditional string instrument which provides the backing music to many classic Kurdish and Arabic tracks.

Telling his story through the help of interpreter Yarob Haddad, Ali described the instrument as being "half of his body".

Ali lives and breathes music. He writes music to back poems about love, landscape and respect for his country of Syria.

But Ali was forcibly separated from his passion when he fled the Syrian civil war in 2014 for Iraq.

He left a little before his wife, Khaton, and two sons Roudi, 13, and Nishan, 6. At the same time, Ali also left his small collection of instruments with his family.

In Iraq, where Ali lived for three years, he said he lost his desire to perform even when his family arrived with his instruments.

Now in Coffs he has once again found his tune and hopes to mix with western music.

Ali will be performing the Freedom Feat multicultural banquet on Friday, June 30, an extension of Refugee Week which starts this Sunday.

To RSVP, visit

Topics:  coffs coast culture multicultural refugee week syrian refugees

Great things happen to good people

HAPPINESS: Advocate reader strikes a chord telling us to focus on the positives of life on the Coffs Coast. We agree.

What's got the Coffs Coast talking?

A Super Tonic to start the day

The Brett Bellamy trained Super Tonic races away to win the opening race of the day at Coffs Harbour after jockey Raymond Spokes found a great lane using the inside cutaway.

Coffs trainer rates today's first start winner Super Tonic highly.

Meat tray thief gets a grilling in court after pursuit

COURT GRILLING: David Noel Moore, 28, pleaded guilty to five charges in Coffs Harbour Local Court on Monday.

Man who stole nine meat trays given a hefty jail sentence

Local Partners

'BIG MISTAKE': Caravan owners forced to leave

RADIO personality Neil Marks said he believes the NSW Crown Holiday Park Trust have made a mistake when it comes to the eviction of caravan park tenants.

Challenge for cyclists of all levels and ages

This year's C.ex McDonald's Cycle Challenge is being held on Sunday, August 6. You can ride in the the 10km family ride, 20km, 40km, 60km, or the 100km challenge.

This year's cycle challenge is being held on Sunday, August 6.

New developments announced for Curryfest

TASTE TREATS: New developments for Curryfest 2017.

Fresh ideas and developments show no sign of slowing down.

Bundy mum blogging to get families offline

FAMILY FUN: Deonie Crowther is holding family craft sessions at the Windmill Cafe in Bargara.

Crafty projects a hit with parents and children

MasterChef: Fish fry feast too much for Ipswich cook

NICOLE Stevenson narrowly misses out on MasterChef's Top 10 but local dad Ben Ungermann makes the cut.

Thor on holiday: Chris Hemsworth is here!

If you didn't know who he was - you'd think he was a local

Nintendo set to release the Super NES Classic Edition

Nintendo is releasing a miniature version of their Super NES console

Brad and Sienna spotted ‘holding hands’

Brad Pitt has been spotted at Glastonbury.

ACTORS were seen together at the Glastonbury festival.

Big Brother winner Reggie Bird could end up homeless

BACK in 2003 she won the third season of Big Brother Australia, pocketing $250,000 for her win — but Reggie Bird’s life has been far from easy since then.

The reality star makes a heartbreaking confession

On your toes . . .

Beauty of ballet comes to town

Sunday sesh with McKenzie boys

Check out these guys playing the Hoey Moey on Sunday, July 2.

Island caretaker has weeks to live, abandons paradise

St Bees managing director Phil Webb, has been struck with illness and it has prompted the sale of the island.

His health has deteriorated in the past couple of months

Prime CBD site sold as laneway culture progresses

The Longs building Ruthven Street has been purchased by a group of investors to be renovated into a series of shops/eateries.  June 2017

How investors and council plan to transform the Toowoomba CBD

House build hits the spot

Owner Libby Parish from Thora commissioned licensed builder Cormac McMullan, of Cormac & Co to build her a two bedroom, one bathroom house with a skillion roof.

Is this the answer to affordable housing on the Coffs Coast?

Major German supermarket set to open in southeast Queensland

German supermarket giant Kaufland is understood to have approached southeast Queensland councils about a possible distribution centre, which would kickstart the establishment of new supermarkets.

Supermarket giant Kaufland has its eyes firmly on Queensland.

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!