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Amir ElSaffar

Amir ElSaffar, trumpeter, composer, singer, and santoor player, is garnering an international reputation for his work, both in the traditional Iraqi Maqam and in jazz music. Described as "one of the important carriers of the Iraqi Maqam tradition" by Maqam master, Hamid al-Saadi, Amir currently leads the only ensemble in the US performing Iraqi Maqam, Safaafir. Amir sings and plays santoor, and is accompanied by traditional instruments, such as the joze (spike fiddle) and tabla. This ensemble has researched ancient practices that have been lost in recent generations, and is now reviving these sounds, continuing the legacy of the great masters of this tradition


Quality of Joy

Label: Outhere Music Group
Released: 2023
Track listing: Quality of Joy; Deep Spirit in Time; You Know That Nobody Knows; Longevity; Borrowed Times; Where Are the Angels; Doors of Kingdom.


Article: Radio & Podcasts

Yuhan Su + Sounds of the Middle East

Read "Yuhan Su + Sounds of the Middle East" reviewed by David Brown

This week we will feature a selection of music that congers of the sounds of the Middle-East though the lens of jazz. Our featured new release will be Liberated Gesture by Taiwanese vibraphonist and composer Yuhan Su. Old, new, in, out... wherever the music takes us. Each week, we will explore the elements of jazz from ...


Article: Interview

Carlton-Macpherson-Pass-Valenti Quartet Interview Series: Kate Pass

Read "Carlton-Macpherson-Pass-Valenti Quartet Interview Series: Kate Pass" reviewed by Jane Kozhevnikova

This is the second article in the series of interviews (read the Alana Macpherson) featuring four Australian jazz musicians: Jessica Carlton (trumpet), Alana Macpherson (saxophone), Kate Pass (double bass) and Talya Valenti (drums). They formed a quartet in 2021 and released the album Undeniable (Self Produced, 2022). All About Jazz had the honor of meeting the ...

Article: Album Review

Amir ElSaffar River of Sound Orchestra: The Other Shore

Read "The Other Shore" reviewed by Neri Pollastri

Secondo disco per la Rivers of Sound Orchestra, ensemble creato nel 2015 da Amir ElSaffar con il preciso intento di esplorare in modo originale le culture musicali delle sue origini. ElSaffar è infatti nato negli Stati Uniti da madre statunitense e padre di origini irachene; avvicinatosi precocemente alla musica, ha coltivato quella jazzistica dalla discoteca paterna ...


Article: Radio & Podcasts

Anat Cohen, Weather Report, Craig Taborn and Much More

Read "Anat Cohen, Weather Report, Craig Taborn and Much More" reviewed by Jerome Wilson

This show includes a wide array of jazz musicians from the present and recent past including Anat Cohen, Donny McCaslin, Weather Report, Henry Threadgill and Roy Haynes. Playlist Henry Threadgill Sextett “I Can't Wait Till I Get Home" from The Complete Novus & Columbia Recordings of Henry Threadgill & Air (Mosaic) 00:00 Sextet of ...


Article: Radio & Podcasts

Amir ElSaffar: In search of ecstasy

Read "Amir ElSaffar: In search of ecstasy" reviewed by Leo Sidran

Amir ElSaffar has spent much of his life in search of the ecstatic moments that help connect to something bigger. In his case, he does this through his relationship with music and culture. Trying to define or even explain what he does is not so simple, even for him. He leads five ensembles and ...


The Other Shore

Label: OutNote Records
Released: 2021


Article: Radio & Podcasts

Esinam, Maurice Louca, Amir ElSaffar, Keshav Batish & More New Releases

Read "Esinam, Maurice Louca, Amir ElSaffar, Keshav Batish & More New Releases" reviewed by Ludovico Granvassu

Around the jazz world in 70 minutes, as we criss-cross from North America to the Caribbean, from West-Africa to Europe, from North-Africa to India and back.Happy listening and enjoy your jazz air-miles!Playlist Ben Allison “Mondo Jazz Theme (feat. Ted Nash & Pyeng Threadgill)" 0:00 Dave Holland “The Village" Another land (Edition) 0:16 ...


Article: Album Review

Hafez Modirzadeh with Kris Davis, Tyshawn Sorey and Craig Taborn: Facets

Read "Facets" reviewed by Troy Dostert

A rigorous, sometimes imposingly cerebral innovator, tenor saxophonist Hafez Modirzadeh has dedicated himself since the 1980s to ever more ambitious ways of opening up the Western musical tradition to scrutiny. A particular obsession is the restrictive quality of conventional instrumental tunings, which, as Modirzadeh perceives them, can limit the possibilities available to improvisers and composers alike, ...


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