Formed in 2012 by Nermin Begovic, Michael Lewandowski and Bart Elliott, Natchez Thrace is an instrumental Balkan music trio based in Nashville, TN that predominantly performs traditional folk music of Southeastern Europe, historically known as Thrace, which comprises of Greece, Bulgaria, and Turkey. Natchez Thrace also performs traditional folk music from Armenia, Bosnia, France, Ireland, Israel, Macedonia, Poland, Romania and Russia.

Nermin, Michael and Bart have another folk trio, UBERkrainer, in which they perform a wide assortment of polkas and waltzes from numerous European countries.

Nermin BegovicNermin Begovic was born in the city of Travnik, located in Central Bosnia. At the age of 9, Nermin began learning how to play accordion in the local school of music. After five years he stopped playing accordion and began to focus on rock guitar. After moving to the USA in 2005 as a music therapist, Nermin rediscovered accordion and has been actively playing the instrument ever since. In May 2003, Nermin completed his guitar studies at Austin Peay State University (APSU), located in Clarksville, TN.

A former member of the Irish/American contra dance band, The Nashville Weather, Nermin is actively performing a wide variety of musical styles as a soloist, on both classical guitar and accordion, as well as working with the Latin romantic ensemble, Serenata, the Bulgarian folk group, Tantsova Grupa, and (of course) Natchez Thrace.

Michael LewandowskiMichael Lewandowski has been playing the mandolin since 1988.

He studied mandolin technique, music theory and jazz with world renowned mandolin virtuosos, Radim Zenkl and Mike Marshall. He also studied North Indian Hindustani classical music with Swara Samrat Ali Akbar Khan, North African Andalus classical music with Omar Ait Vimoun Mokhtari, and Turkish / Arabic classical music with Mimi Spencer.

Michael has performed and continues to perform with a wide range of music groups and artists, including the Bulgarian folk group, Tantsova Grupa.

Bart ElliottBart Elliott grew up in the midwest USA and started playing the drums when he was 12-years-old. By the time he was 15, Bart was playing in public with several music groups around his hometown, just outside of St. Louis, Missouri. While in high school, an ethnomusicological drive led Bart to explore and teach himself to play a wide variety of hand percussion instruments, as well as keyboard percussion instruments (eg. xylophone, vibraphone, marimba) incorporating 2-mallet and 4-mallet techniques.

Bart's formal music training includes a Bachelor of Music - Performance degree from West Texas A & M University, post-graduate work at Southwest Texas State Univeristy, private lessons with John Kasica (St. Louis Symphony Orchestra), plus numerous classes and individual sessions with leading drum/percussion experts.

With over 35 years in the music industry, Bart is a highly sought after studio session musician and regularly performs within a wide variety of music styles on both drums and percussion for numerous music groups and artists around the world. He is also an active music producer, ASCAP composer and arranger, musical director, freelance writer, music educator, clinician and private instructor.

In 1996, Bart founded DrummerCafe.com, a leading resource and community for drummers and percussionists. Drummer Cafe is regarded as the oldest, longest standing website of its kind.

For more information, visit Bart's website: www.bartelliott.com.