Mugham Souls is an exceptional encounter between two voices from different cultures watered from the same spring. It presents a unique mix of Jazz and Mugham that has been travelling around the world and is now coming to the UAE.
When French jazzman Pierre de Trégomain discovered Gochag Askarov’s album Mugham: Traditional Music of Azerbaidjan (Felmay Records), he decided to go to Baku in February 2016 to learn Mugham from him. The musical encounter was so impactful and creative that both singers decided to start a trans-cultural collaboration: they gathered together the most talented musicians of their generation and created an unprecedented repertoire of traditional Mugham, original compositions and improvisations. They recorded their collection in November 2016 at the prestigious Mugham Centre in Baku, under the cameras of the national television body, ATV. Their live album was released through Italian Label Felmay Records in November 2017. For their first appearance in the region, they will perform at the Umsiyat Festival and contribute to its spirit of mixing musical traditions and genres and finding new and innovative musical languages.
Composed by percussionist Kamran Kerimov it evokes the theme of “heartbeat” - the origin of Mugham Soul music.
Let me be the voice
A fusion between the Bayat Kurd traditional Mugham and the composition of Pierre de Trégomain. Let me be the voice is an enchanting two-voice prayer, a call to fervor.
A traditional Mugham song that is part of Azerbaijan classical repertoire. The melody is known beyond its borders, as interpreted by Maestro Goshag Askarov.
The encounter between the traditional Mugham, Bayati-Shiraz and a composition by Pierre de Trégomain. Shelter is an opportunity for two singers to blend their voices in a heavenly rendition.
A composition where French poetry and traditional harmonies are drawn from the heart of the traditional Mugham. Composed by Pierre de Trégomain.
A composition by the master of the kamancheh, Elnur Mikayilov. A journey between Mugham and jazz alternating climactic rhythms with an aspiration to achieve a sense of serenity.
Pierre de Trégomain
Pierre de Trégomain was born in 1974. After having been awarded the first prize in the Crest Jazz Vocal Competition of 2008, he was described by Jazz Magazine as “one of the most significant singers” of European jazz with his albums My Cold Song and Shelter. Pierre performed in important jazz clubs and festivals with his quartet, showing his “multifaceted voice”, as pointed out in the German Newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung. His passion for improvisation and his search for a transcendent voice lead him to explore new musical horizons, from Baroque to Central Asian music, the latest being Mugham Soul, his rich and performance with Gochag Askarov and their talented traditional ensemble.
Gochag Askarov is one of the major new generation artists performing Mugham, the enchanting music of Azerbaijan, a traditional art that the world discovered in the voice of Maestro Alim Qasimov. Born in 1978, he has been singing from a very young age. He started his international career in 2007 after having studied at the National Conservatory of Baku. In 2009 he won at the prestigious Traditional Music Festival competition in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, and since then, Gochag Askarov has been performing in the biggest traditional music festivals in Europe, Asia, Australia and America. He has released five albums that have captivated the public at large. The mastery of his interpretation is outstanding, particularly in the art of Zengüle Makami which is capable of generating a unique and powerful set of emotions.
Elnur Mikayilovis one of the most acclaimed young kamancheh (Azeri fiddle) players. He was born in the ancient city of Shamakhi, Azerbaijan. A graduate of the Baku National Conservatory, Mikayilov started his musical career at the age of 19. He has been touring extensively, nationally and internationally, for the past twelve years. Elnur's specialisation is in the music of classical Mugham and folklore but he has extensive experience in working with a variety of musical styles such as classical music and jazz.
Kamran Karimov was born 1976 in a family of well-known percussionists. He studied at Asef Zeynalli College and at Baku Music Academy where he specialized in percussion. He is considered to be one of the most talented Nagara percussionists (the Nagara is a specific drum for the traditional music of Azerbaijan). He has been playing in major international music festivals in Asia, Europe and America.
Vasif Huseynzade was born in Baku in 1985 where he also studied music - he graduated from Azerbaijan State Pedagogical University in 2007. He developed a rare talent in performing as a pianist as well as a composer, which resulted in his being granted several awards. He has participated in festivals in Azerbaijan and abroad and is highly respected for his ability to blend jazz with traditional music such as Mugham.
Ibrahim Babayev was not even 10 years old when he started to study music. He was born in 1997 and chose the Tar as an instrument - which he studied intensively at the National Conservatory. Among the prizes he won was first prize at the American Protégé International Competition in New York in 2015 and he was also awarded first prize at the International Contest of Tashkent / Uzbekistan in 2016.