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Take Five with Trio Lisipi

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About Trio Lisipi

Sometimes jazz happens to you as something least expected. Exactly as it happened to Liliya Akhmetzyanova, the pianist from the jazz trio Lisipi. She started playing piano at age of six and, as many decent Russian pianists, graduated from a conservatory 20 years later. Then years of happy sight reading and playing classics by memory got suddenly interrupted by Silvio Canargiu—a guitarist, bassist, singer, composer, producer and such a handsome man. Yes, love happened, they got married and delivered their first baby—an album of original compositions Lisipi. Surprisingly, some of the tracks in that album are quite jazz. For example, you can hear themes and following improvisation. There you even can hear some "jazz" harmonies and rhythms, imagine that!!! Ah, by the way, a famous Sardinian drummer, writer and composer Pierpaolo Frailis was helping a lot in producing the album. Since then, the trio of all mentioned above musicians is called Lisipi. Li—Liliya, Si—Silvio, Pi—Pierpaolo. They love playing concert programs consisting of their original music.

Instrument(s):

Piano, bass, drums.

Teachers and/or influences?

All the music culture from early music to contemporary achievements has influenced us. And we may even haven't realized how deeply.

I knew I wanted to be a musician when...

Liliya was a primadonna at the kindergarten, which she was attending till the age of six. With age, her voice deteriorated, but love for music remained.

Silvio, on the contrary, developed his vocals through the years. He started learning how to play guitar at age of nine, very much infatuated with hard and metal rock.

Pierpaolo is a phenomenal musician. He knew how to play drums before he, actually, held the drumsticks in his hands for the first time. Exactly like Mozart, who played violin straight away without preparation (as legend echoes).

Your sound and approach to music.

We can't take away from our production Liliya's classical technic and manner of intonation on piano. As well as gravitating to melodic and developed phrasing. Silvio gives the improvisational spark to the trio. With him no take repeats another, which always challenges two other members. Pierpaolo is an infinitely flexible and constantly reliable member of the trio.

Your teaching approach

We are still trying to avoid such a responsibility as teaching. But if it's going to happen one day, we will focus on reinforcing belief in oneself and lighting the fire of passion and appetite for music (any kind of it, be it opera, baroque or rock).

Your dream band

Lisipi is a dream band. It is when all the members are put together by destiny.

And we would love to participate in one of the Pat Metheny's projects. For example, The Orchestrion Project.

Road story: Your best or worst experience

In the program of one of our recent concerts was included a piece written by Pierpaolo Frailis. It was the only piece we had to read. On the way to the venue we found out that the score wasn't in our luggage. So we had to skip the piece that day. Later we found the score in the box of paper prepared for burning in fireplace. And a quote by Mikhail Bulgakov came to mind: "Manuscripts don't burn."

Favorite venue

We love each and every venue we play at. As long as there's at least one spectator present.

Your favorite recording in your discography and why?

So far we have produced two albums. One is about soundtrack music and the other is Lisipi. In Lisipi there is more interplay between us.

What do you think is the most important thing you are contributing musically?

As we claim in the introduction to our album on CD Baby page, "We bring melodies back to the world."

Did you know...

...that we are very optimistic about our future?

The first jazz album I bought was:

The Best of Ella Fitzgerald

Music you are listening to now:

Just listened on YouTube to Yuja Wang playing Brahms' "Piano Concerto No.2" with Munich Philarmonic conducted by Valery Gergiev. Brahms is our favorite composer and we are usually quite jealous listening to others' interpretation of his music. However, Yuja deserves our admiration and praise.

Desert Island picks:

Deep Purple, Machine Head (Warner Bros)
Keith Jarrett, The Koln Concert (ECM Records)

How would you describe the state of jazz today?

If we say that jazz is swing and swing no longer exists, we would sound like purists.

When we say that Lisipi is a jazz trio we may sound to some like parvenu.

When we see that jazz festival scene is packed nowadays with pop stars and rappers we feel very liberal and open-minded.

And in general, we are happy that jazz always inspired and it always will with new generations of musicians and listeners.

What are some of the essential requirements to keep jazz alive and growing?

Just play it.

What is in the near future?

We are in the process of getting ready for our European Tour.

What is your greatest fear when you perform?

To miscount drum solo. :-)

What song would you like played at your funeral?

As we care very much about promotion of Lisipi, we wouldn't waste a chance to make it heard by people even at our funeral...

What is your favorite song to whistle or sing in the shower?

"Liberty City" by Jaco Pastorius.

By Day:

It is usually preparation of repertoire for gigs we take sometimes on cruise ships or hotels worldwide.

If I weren't a jazz musician, I would be a:

Pierpaolo would be a writer, Silvio a lumberjack and Liliya would be an influencer.

If I could have dinner with anyone from history, who would it be and why?

Recently we read Reminiscence of Scriabin by Sabaneev. Try to find it. To us, it is one of the best books ever written about a musician. We would love to have dinner with Scriabin!

What would be your contribution to the world where everybody does what he/she loves and gets money for living out of that?

We would be living examples of that.
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