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HAMASYAN'S FABLE : ARMENIAN-BORN MUSICIAN GOES SOLO ON NEW RELEASE


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#1 Yervant1

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 11:44 AM

HAMASYAN'S FABLE : ARMENIAN-BORN MUSICIAN GOES SOLO ON NEW RELEASE
By STEPHEN COOKE

The Chronicle Herald
http://thechronicleh...amasyan-s-fable
Feb 9 2012
Halifax, Canada

BY A WEIRD coincidence, this week began with a show by Deep Purple and
it wraps up with an artist who lists the British heavy rock legends as
a prime influence, yet their music couldn't be more sharply contrasted.

Even so, Tigran Hamasyan can generate as much drama from a lone grand
piano as his early idols can with 10,000 watts of sound, which he'll
demonstrate on Saturday at 8 p.m. at the Peggy Corkum Music Room,
formerly known as simply the Music Room, on Lady Hammond Road.

"Yeah, all these bands, Deep Purple, Nazareth, Black Sabbath and
Led Zeppelin, those guys were my heroes when I was a kid," says the
Armenian-born musician over the phone from Los Angeles, sounding a
bit disappointed to learn that original Purple keyboardist Jon Lord
has been sidelined by injury and illness for the past few years.

There is no trace of rock and roll overkill on Hamasyan's Verve
Records debut A Fable, just imaginative dexterity and a feel for
atmosphere and visual suggestion that can launch a flood of visual
images on What the Waves Brought and The Legend of the Moon.

At times, it feels like a soundtrack in search of a silent movie
with settings like a village carnival or the deepest, darkest woods
imaginable. It seems virtually impossible for two people to hear A
Fable in the exact same way, and it's surprising to learn that this is
Hamasyan's first solo recording, after a handful of combo recordings.

"You grow up playing alone; even with a band, most of your time is
spent at home by yourself practising or creating music," he explains.

"Playing solo is one of the most natural things for any musician,
and I've been meaning to record solo because I've been playing solo
concerts for a while, and it seemed like the right time.

"It's a challenge, you know? Because it takes time until you feel that
you can say something playing by yourself. There are so many solo piano
records out there, for over a century there's been all this amazing
piano music, so it's a big challenge to come up with something new."

Don't be surprised to hear echoes of solo piano work ranging from
Erik Satie to Keith Jarrett in Hamasyan's performance, but he also
has a realm of influence that's just as important in the folk tales,
songs and medieval hymns from his native Armenia.

"For example, I was inspired by the work of these fabulists that lived
in the 13th century, and they wrote an extensive number of fables,
and they were also political figures.

"It was amazing when I rediscovered them, and I realized that the
fables they were writing related to their everyday lives, and I related
to them as well. They're about the exact same values, and you can
see how people in the world haven't changed. It's pretty remarkable."

The concept of fables spans the Bible - What the Waves Brought
reminds me that the Ararat mountain range, the final resting place
of Noah's ark, is in Armenia - to Walt Disney. Snow White's Someday
My Prince Will Come takes on a tone that's more dark than wistful:
"Be careful what you wish for," it seems to say.

The album's closer, Mother, Where Are You?, is a medieval Armenian
hymn that brings everything back to Earth, and sums up centuries of
the nation's hardships and persecution in a few succinct lines.

"I've always been meaning to arrange that song, because I thought it
had one of the most amazing melodies I've ever heard," says Hamasyan,
who feels the meaning comes across even if the listener doesn't know
the background.

"It's challenging to express myself in a way that people can understand
it, but I keep getting great feedback. I think all types of folk
music and religious music are part of something that's universal and
it doesn't matter what nationality you are.

"Whatever kind of folk music it is, you can understand it."

Tickets for Hamasyan areavailable at jazzeast.com/tigran-hamasyan or
by calling 492-2225.

#2 ED

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 12:25 PM

Thanks Yervant jan, a great story, I can relaite to Tigran, in my youth we always jamed tunes from Deep Purple.
those were good old days, now days is lawers and voulchers......what the fook this or Armenia come to:(

by the way, whats that phone #?

#3 Yervant1

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 01:04 PM

Thanks Yervant jan, a great story, I can relaite to Tigran, in my youth we always jamed tunes from Deep Purple.
those were good old days, now days is lawers and voulchers......what the fook this or Armenia come to:(

by the way, whats that phone #?

JazzEast’s 2012 winter season starts Feb. 11, 8 p.m., at the Music Room, Lady Hammond Road, Halifax, with Armenian-born solo pianist Tigran Hamasyan. The New York-based artist, whose latest album is A Fable, is known for virtuosity, compositional voice and energetic experiments with rhythmic and harmony.

The number is for ordering tickets, the area code for Halifax is (902) 492-2225. :)




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