Paul Pena

Paul Pena and Kongar-ol Ondar

born January 26, 1950 in Hyannis, Massachusetts

oldest child of Jack and Virginia Pena

all four grandparents came from the Cape Verde Islands off the west coast of Africa

born with congenital glaucoma

graduated Perkins School for the Blind, Watertown, 1967

attended Clark University

wife Babe died of kidney failure 1991

taught himself the vocal techniques known as 'Khoomei, Sygyt, and Kargyraa'

met Kongar-ol Ondar 1993

Kongar-ol Ondar invited Paul to sing at the second international Khoomei Symposium and contest, held in Tuva's capital city, Kyzyl, 1995

took first place in the Kargyraa division of the contest and became known as 'Earthquake' for his amazingly deep voice, and also won the 'audience favorite' award

Paul and Kongar-ol Ondar have also recorded a compact disc called Genghis Blues, which combines American blues singing, Cape Verdian 'morna,' and Tuvan Khoomei

film Genghis Blues 1999

named 'San Francisco's Tuvan Blues Ambassador' and July 11, 1999 was declared 'Paul Pena Day' by the mayor

Paul Pena

Genghis Blues

Six Degrees Records

Hybrid Records

Friends of Tuva

Tuva Trader

Tom Bolling's home page