Behnam Valikhani Samani was born 1967 in Chahar Mahai, Bakhtiari in Iran. He started studying tonbak at the age of 13 with D. Mohebi who lived in Iran's central city of Isfahan. He has been performing around Europe and Americas since 1987 in prestigious concert halls such as Haus der Kulturen der Welt in Berlin, Gastgeig in Munich and Rasa in Utrecht. He currently resides in Cologne, Germany. Samani was among the founders of the Zarbang Ensemble in Germany and continues to perform with this group.