A Romani Musician Calls Austin Home

Oliver Rajamani was drawn to Austin by the World Romani Center and its extensive archives.

By Joy DiazApril 26, 2018 11:47 am,

As a musician, Oliver Rajamani showcases not only the music of his culture, but the culture as a whole.

“We’re talking about the Romani culture and Romani is what the gypsies call themselves,” Rajami says.

Romani gypsies were brought to the America on Spanish ships as workers. European countries wanted to get rid of the Romani people, since they were “an unwanted population.”

“The Romani people were the first Indian diaspora to have left India,” Rajamani says.

Rajamani came to Texas because of the World Romani Center in Austin. The center has the world’s largest Romani archives. He visits India every year, but he always returns to Austin.

“As far as my creativity, my expression, and dreams, and all that, is more found here,” Rajamani says.

Written by Angela Bonilla.