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  • Friday, April 29, 2022
    Tigran Hamasyan’s First Album of American Standards, 'StandArt,' Out Now on Nonesuch Records

    Pianist and composer Tigran Hamasyan’s StandArt—his first album of American standards—is out now on Nonesuch Records. StandArt includes songs from the 1920s through the 1950s, by Richard Rodgers, Charlie Parker, Jerome Kern, David Raksin, and others; it also includes a piece Hamasyan improvised with his bandmates—bassist Matt Brewer and drummer Justin Brown—and trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire, who is featured on two of the album’s tracks. Other special guests include saxophonist and label-mate Joshua Redman on Charlie Parker’s “Big Foot,” as well as saxophonist Mark Turner on Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein’s “All the Things You Are.”

    "This is jazz for people who like to sit at the edge of their seats," says PopMatters. "StandArt is a dissection and reformulation of the Great American Songbook that holds on to the essence of the numbers it pays homage to while lending them a modern, high-fidelity sheen and Hamasyan’s mastermind perception."

    “Hamasyan is one of today’s most revered and distinctive voices in jazz and creative music,” says Jazziz. “StandArt finds him applying different techniques and ideas that he has developed over the years to a revered repertoire, breathing new life into well-worn songs and lesser-known gems.”

    Produced by Hamasyan and recorded last spring in Los Angeles, StandArt is Hamasyan’s first release of American music, having previously only released original compositions and traditional Armenian music. “With this record, I really wanted to apply different techniques and ideas I’ve developed over the years to a repertoire that I finally had an opportunity to re-visit, and to send a message that I really appreciate this music and am thankful for it,” he says. “I love these compositions and melodies so much that, to me, it’s like Armenian folk music. As an immigrant—an Armenian-American—I relate to these composers and musicians from various backgrounds who have that kind of history, a dark history, but managed to succeed in an embodiment of freedom. In that way, I feel like I want to be part of this, to find something in the tradition of where I came from.”

    Hamasyan embarks on a US tour in June, with dates in Boulder, Chicago, Washington, DC, New York City, and a concluding performance at the Ford Amphitheater in Los Angeles on June 16. He also has upcoming dates in France, Germany, Belgium, Austria, Spain, Italy, Hungary, the Netherlands, and the UK. The US shows feature music from Hamasyan’s 2020 album, The Call Within, the initial tour for which was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic. See below for all of the currently announced shows; for all the latest, visit nonesuch.com/on-tour.

    StandArt follows The Call Within, which took inspiration from his interest in maps from different eras, along with poetry, Christian and pre-Christian Armenian folk stories and legends, astrology, geometry, ancient Armenian design, rock carvings, and cinematography—blurring lines between historic reality and the imaginary world. It was included on Album of the Year lists by BBC Music Magazine and Jazzwise, which called it “an exceptional recording for exceptional times” and Hamasyan’s “strongest artistic statement yet.”

    Hamasyan began playing piano at the age of three and started performing in festivals and competitions when he was eleven, winning the Montreux Jazz Festival’s piano competition in 2003. He released his debut album, World Passion, in 2005 at the age of seventeen. The following year, he won the prestigious Thelonious Monk International Jazz Piano Competition. Additional albums include New Era; Red Hail; A Fable, for which he was awarded a Victoires de la Musique (the equivalent of a Grammy Award in France); Shadow Theater; and Luys i Luso. His Nonesuch debut, Mockroot (2015), won the Echo Jazz Award for International Piano Instrumentalist of the Year; subsequent records for the label include An Ancient Observer (2017) and the companion EP, For Gymuri (2018). Last year, he was awarded for the Deutscher Jazzpreis international category in Piano/Keyboards. In addition to awards and critical praise, Hamasyan has built a dedicated international following, as well as praise from Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock, and Brad Mehldau.

    TIGRAN HAMASYAN ON TOUR

    May 9 Post Tower Bonn, GERMANY
    May 10 Théâtre M. Novarina Thonon, FRANCE
    May 13 Théâtre de la Maison du Peuple Millau, FRANCE
    May 15 Place Xavier Neujean Liège, BELGIUM
    May 16 Wiener Konzerthaus Vienna, AUSTRIA
    May 18 L'Auditori Barcelona, SPAIN
    May 19 Teatro Olimpico Vicenza, ITALY
    May 20 Béla Bartók National Concert Hall Budapest, HUNGARY
    May 24 Les Gémeaux Sceaux, FRANCE
         
    Jun 8 Boulder Theater Boulder, CO
    Jun 9 Lincoln Hall Chicago, IL
    Jun 11 Howard Theatre Washington, DC
    Jun 12 Gramercy Theatre New York, NY
    Jun 16 Ford Amphitheater Los Angeles, CA
         
    Jul 5 L'Olympia Paris, FRANCE
    Jul 10 North Sea Jazz Festival Rotterdam, NETHERLANDS
    Jul 14 Barbican Hall London, UK
    Jul 18 Pinède Gould Juan-les-Pins, FRANCE
         
    Journal Articles:Album ReleaseArtist News

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Tigran Hamasyan’s First Album of American Standards, 'StandArt,' Out Now on Nonesuch Records

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on April 29, 2022 - 9:00am
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Friday, April 29, 2022 - 09:00
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Pianist and composer Tigran Hamasyan’s StandArt—his first album of American standards—is out now. StandArt includes songs from the 1920s through the 1950s, by Richard Rodgers, Charlie Parker, Jerome Kern, David Raksin, and others; it also includes a piece Hamasyan improvised with his bandmates—bassist Matt Brewer and drummer Justin Brown—and trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire. Other special guests include saxophonists Joshua Redman and Mark Turner. Hamasyan tours Europe in May and the US in June.

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Pianist and composer Tigran Hamasyan’s StandArt—his first album of American standards—is out now on Nonesuch Records. StandArt includes songs from the 1920s through the 1950s, by Richard Rodgers, Charlie Parker, Jerome Kern, David Raksin, and others; it also includes a piece Hamasyan improvised with his bandmates—bassist Matt Brewer and drummer Justin Brown—and trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire, who is featured on two of the album’s tracks. Other special guests include saxophonist and label-mate Joshua Redman on Charlie Parker’s “Big Foot,” as well as saxophonist Mark Turner on Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein’s “All the Things You Are.”

"This is jazz for people who like to sit at the edge of their seats," says PopMatters. "StandArt is a dissection and reformulation of the Great American Songbook that holds on to the essence of the numbers it pays homage to while lending them a modern, high-fidelity sheen and Hamasyan’s mastermind perception."

“Hamasyan is one of today’s most revered and distinctive voices in jazz and creative music,” says Jazziz. “StandArt finds him applying different techniques and ideas that he has developed over the years to a revered repertoire, breathing new life into well-worn songs and lesser-known gems.”

Produced by Hamasyan and recorded last spring in Los Angeles, StandArt is Hamasyan’s first release of American music, having previously only released original compositions and traditional Armenian music. “With this record, I really wanted to apply different techniques and ideas I’ve developed over the years to a repertoire that I finally had an opportunity to re-visit, and to send a message that I really appreciate this music and am thankful for it,” he says. “I love these compositions and melodies so much that, to me, it’s like Armenian folk music. As an immigrant—an Armenian-American—I relate to these composers and musicians from various backgrounds who have that kind of history, a dark history, but managed to succeed in an embodiment of freedom. In that way, I feel like I want to be part of this, to find something in the tradition of where I came from.”

Hamasyan embarks on a US tour in June, with dates in Boulder, Chicago, Washington, DC, New York City, and a concluding performance at the Ford Amphitheater in Los Angeles on June 16. He also has upcoming dates in France, Germany, Belgium, Austria, Spain, Italy, Hungary, the Netherlands, and the UK. The US shows feature music from Hamasyan’s 2020 album, The Call Within, the initial tour for which was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic. See below for all of the currently announced shows; for all the latest, visit nonesuch.com/on-tour.

StandArt follows The Call Within, which took inspiration from his interest in maps from different eras, along with poetry, Christian and pre-Christian Armenian folk stories and legends, astrology, geometry, ancient Armenian design, rock carvings, and cinematography—blurring lines between historic reality and the imaginary world. It was included on Album of the Year lists by BBC Music Magazine and Jazzwise, which called it “an exceptional recording for exceptional times” and Hamasyan’s “strongest artistic statement yet.”

Hamasyan began playing piano at the age of three and started performing in festivals and competitions when he was eleven, winning the Montreux Jazz Festival’s piano competition in 2003. He released his debut album, World Passion, in 2005 at the age of seventeen. The following year, he won the prestigious Thelonious Monk International Jazz Piano Competition. Additional albums include New Era; Red Hail; A Fable, for which he was awarded a Victoires de la Musique (the equivalent of a Grammy Award in France); Shadow Theater; and Luys i Luso. His Nonesuch debut, Mockroot (2015), won the Echo Jazz Award for International Piano Instrumentalist of the Year; subsequent records for the label include An Ancient Observer (2017) and the companion EP, For Gymuri (2018). Last year, he was awarded for the Deutscher Jazzpreis international category in Piano/Keyboards. In addition to awards and critical praise, Hamasyan has built a dedicated international following, as well as praise from Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock, and Brad Mehldau.

TIGRAN HAMASYAN ON TOUR

May 9 Post Tower Bonn, GERMANY
May 10 Théâtre M. Novarina Thonon, FRANCE
May 13 Théâtre de la Maison du Peuple Millau, FRANCE
May 15 Place Xavier Neujean Liège, BELGIUM
May 16 Wiener Konzerthaus Vienna, AUSTRIA
May 18 L'Auditori Barcelona, SPAIN
May 19 Teatro Olimpico Vicenza, ITALY
May 20 Béla Bartók National Concert Hall Budapest, HUNGARY
May 24 Les Gémeaux Sceaux, FRANCE
     
Jun 8 Boulder Theater Boulder, CO
Jun 9 Lincoln Hall Chicago, IL
Jun 11 Howard Theatre Washington, DC
Jun 12 Gramercy Theatre New York, NY
Jun 16 Ford Amphitheater Los Angeles, CA
     
Jul 5 L'Olympia Paris, FRANCE
Jul 10 North Sea Jazz Festival Rotterdam, NETHERLANDS
Jul 14 Barbican Hall London, UK
Jul 18 Pinède Gould Juan-les-Pins, FRANCE
     
featuredimage: 
Tigran Hamasyan: 'StandArt' [cover]

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