Oleg Kireyev is an internationally recognized musician, frequently on tour and playing to appreciative audiences in Europe and the U.S. Oleg has participated in many of the most innovative and provocative international jazz projects in a recording/performing career spanning three decades. His creative ideas are vast, from mainstream and ethno to jazz rock and world music. “Incredibly good” “soft & enthusiastic” and “stylish and top notch” — are phrases music critics write about the voice of his saxophone. He has performed at the London Jazz Festival, the New York Jazz Improv Festival and the Montreux Jazz Festival, to name a few.
Keith Javors is a household name in contemporary jazz circles, a world-renowned educator as well as artist and producer. As a pianist, he prides himself on innovation, bringing to the surface many revolutionary ideas. A fully dedicated live performer, Keith has the rare gift of sounding like he is playing for each individual listener alone. His performance credits include the Montreux Jazz Festival, Chicago Jazz Festival, North Sea Jazz Festival, and many more.
In September 2008, after an initial performance at the legendary “Chris Jazz Café” in Philadelphia, Oleg and Keith played many East Coast venues together through Spring 2009, including “Blues Alley” in Washington D.C. and “Iridium” in New York. During rehearsals and stage performances a partnership grew, and they decided to launch an album and project titled “Rhyme & Reason”. They recorded at Bennett Studio in New Jersey, featuring the support of Boris Kozlov from the Charles Mingus Band on bass and E. J. Strickland from the Ravi Coltrane Band on drums.
Get to know Oleg and Keith intimately in the Press Section of the EPK.
Quotes about Oleg Kireyev:
"Oleg's playing is a marvelous combination of styles, incorporating a whole lot of players. I hear echoes of the 1920’s and John Coltrane combined with unstructured jazz" - Bud Shank, musician.
“A Russian sax player with a reputation for hard swing and high excitement” - The Express and Star, UK.
“Kireyev breaks down genre borders...Adventurous and intriguing.” - Paul Freeman, Palo Alto Daily News
Quotes about Keith Javors:
"a great, high-octane session featuring...the incredible Keith Javors on piano." - jazzchicago.net reporting from the '09 Chicago Jazz Festival
“Javors distinguishes himself as a bandleader intent on collective envelope-pushing...It's full steam ahead.” - Bill Milkowski, Jazz Times
“Known for his technical virtuosity, a riveting compositional style, and constant creativity” - All About Jazz
Oleg Kireyev, Keith Javors and the Rhyme & Reason Project are available for Jazz Festivals and club dates throughout 2010.
Oleg Kireyev — saxophone — Russia/USA
Keith Javors — piano — USA
Boris Kozlov — bass — USA
E. J. Strickland — drums — USA
The release of the new album “Rhyme & Reason” on the Inarhyme Records label is scheduled for April 13, 2010 – the musicians are spending considerable time touring Europe and North America to boost sales and connect with their listeners.
Oleg Kireyev's most recent albums are "Mandala" (2008) and "Song for Sonny" (2007).
Keith Javors has recently released "Coming Together" (2009), adding to a list which includes "On The Bright Side" (2009), "The Free Project" (2007) and "Mo' City Jungle" (2004).
Keith Javors Bio and Critical Acclaim
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Biography Born: October 15, 1971 With performances ranging from “melancholy and contemplativ...Biography
Born: October 15, 1971
With performances ranging from “melancholy and contemplative to swinging and bluesy to exuberant and burning” (Jazz Times), Keith Javors is widely-respected as both a courageous and skilled producer and pianist as well as a gifted music educator. A former pianist with alto saxophonist Bunky Green who describes him as a “creative force with an urgent message that cannot be denied”, Keith’s numerous years of professional experience in performing and directing ensembles consistently recognized for their musicality.
Released to critical and artistic acclaim, Keith’s 2007 group/solo release, “The Free Project” (ArtistShare 0011), features the American Music Project (Detroit’s A.M.P.), one of several forward-looking groups he produces. Unique in its combination of acoustic jazz sources with spoken word and R & B., the record presents Keith’s original compositions within a new urban framework. JazzReview says. “It takes a musician’s true artistic love and commitment to the art to really peer through his or her music to find this type of end…A brilliant album.”
In 2004, Keith released a very contrasting straight ahead “Mo’ City Jungle” (Zoho 200403) to National radio charting. AllAboutJazz.com: “Not since Kenny Garrett’s Standard of Language and Terence Blanchard’s Bounce has there been a post bop album this exciting. Mo’ City Jungle is not for the faint-at-heart; this is vital, energized music that is captivating from start to finish.”
Keith is a distinguished graduate of the University of North Texas (B.M., M.M. Jazz Studies), where he was a member of the One O’Clock Lab Band and named Outstanding Graduate Student of the Year, and the first graduate of the University of Illinois Jazz Pedagogy program (Ed.D. Music Education). Having been cited in DownBeat as “one of the best teachers in the country”,
Dr. Javors is highly sought after as an educator and consultant, giving clinics and masterclasses at schools and colleges around the world. Keith has held successful prior positions at the University of North Texas, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Eastern Illinois University, and the University of Northern Florida. He was named to the highest percentile of instructors already included on the “Incomplete List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent by Their Students” five times in a row. His dissertation, “An Appraisal of Collegiate Jazz Studies Programs in the Teaching of Jazz Music” is a pervasive examination of the field. Student bands that Keith has directed have won numerous and multi-consecutive national DownBeat Student Music and Blue Chip CD awards, including the sole winner of Best College Big Band. Jazz Times says, “The degree of hard work, patience, study, blood, sweat and tears necessary to produce a band of this quality is phenomenal.”
Keith’s performance credits include concerts at many of the major festivals, performance halls, and clubs around the world, including Rockefeller Center, Great Plains Jazz Festival, North Sea Jazz Festival, Montreux Jazz Festival, Wichita Jazz Festival, Vienne Jazz Festival, several International Association for Jazz Education Conferences, the Savannah Jazz Festival, the Midwest Clinic, the Wichita Jazz Festival, Notre Dame Jazz Festival, clubs such as the The Jazz Showcase, Blues Alley, Smoke, the Caravan of Dreams, Churchhill Grounds, Chris’ Jazz Café’ and several more. He has recorded or performed with a veritable who’s who of jazz, including George Coleman, Bunky Green, Eddie Henderson, Conrad Herwig, Gerry Mulligan, Chris Potter, Terell Stafford, Brad Turner, and Bill Watrous and produced concert collaborations with Béla Fleck and the Flecktones, Terence Blanchard, Dave Brubeck, Kenny Garrett, Slide Hampton, the Heath Brothers, Dave Holland, Pat Martino, Eddie Palmieri, Sam Rivers, Maria Schneider, and Clark Terry.
Keith was born in Carbondale, Illinois on October 15, 1971 and developed an affinity for music. In what he describes as a “childhood need”, he began picking out television theme songs by ear on his family’s defunct player piano at three and started taking lessons at eight. Keith’s interest in jazz was peaked in junior high school after hearing John Coltrane’s “My Favorite Things” and Dave Brubeck’s “Plays Cole Porter”. A standout high school student, at 17 he received a scholarship to attend the prestigious University of North Texas Jazz Studies Program. Keith quickly started first call commercial work, freelancing in the Dallas/Ft. Worth Metroplex and began playing many venues functions, even managing pilot programs for Walt Disney World and Norwegian Cruise Lines while only a student. His early interest in the credence of “real world” performance settings when navigating formal educational paths is a theme that has consistently underpinned his successes and the inspiration he is able to bring to his teaching.
With new several projects due out in 2009, Keith continues to push the artistic envelope with surprising and refreshing results. NYC Jazz Journalist Russ Musto: “Keith is one who certainly can and does, traveling a high road that steers clear of the Ivory Towers and chooses instead more interesting places.” Keith continues to maintain a busy performing and teaching schedule.
For more information on Dr. Keith Javors, visit www.keithjavorsmusic.com
Home: Philadelphia, PA
”Not since Kenny Garrett's Standard of Language and Terence Blanchard's Bounce has there been a post bop album this exciting. Mo' City Jungle is not for the faint-at-heart; this is vital, energized music that is captivating from start to finish.” -- AllAboutJazz.com
“Javors distinguishes himself as a bandleader intent on collective envelope-pushing...It's full steam ahead for this potent sextet.” -- Jazz Times (Bill Milkowski)
“There's a freshness here like Spring after an extremely severe winter. Keith Javors is a singular individual who has made the entire world his resource area and now speaks with his own individual voice…a creative force with an urgent message that cannot be denied.” -- Bunky Green
“The degree of hard work, patience, study, blood, sweat and tears necessary to produce a band of this quality is phenomenal.” -- Jazz Now
“Javors' compositional imagination goes beyond the hard bop references of that first track. Among his other strengths, perhaps Javors' concern for the people he meets and his well-wishing for the world community at large characterizes his work. His music has much to say, and the time spent in enjoying it is well worth the investment.” -- JazzReview.com
“Another guiding light is conductor Dr. Keith Javors. “Through his ears” comes the discipline, tightness of section work and, above all, the dynamic shadings heard on both these CDs.” -- Jazz Education Guide, presented by Jazz Times
“It is a wonderful song so I can see why the musicians are drawn to it and play such wonderful solos on it. That's the truest test of a good jazz tune.” -- Dave Brubeck
“Javors deserves a big pay raise for guiding and inspiring this 19-piece band to excellence. This band is simply a knockout.” -- Jazz Times
“Javors gives the lie to the trite statement that those who can't, teach. The young professor leads a piping hot quintet from his piano chair. Like a latter-day Blakey outfit, the listener is witness to searing solo cascading over searing solo as if emerging molten from the depths of an active volcano.” -- Ejazznews.com
“Well worth checking into, his tunes cover a canvas of varied territories and energies interpreted by a tight unity in timefeel and mutual alertness in improvisation. Javors satisfies an appetite for the musically punctuated with surprising twists and turns.” -- Jazz Education Journal (IAJE)
“A charismatic and deeply talented man.” -- Florida Times Union
“An elegant, charming album that shines both in its carefully crafted compositions as well as top-notch performance…An atmospheric spirit that can compete with the most rare of imported, red wines. A must-have for followers of Kenny Garrett and Mulgrew Miller.” -- CDBaby.com
“Javors displays his considerable talents as a potent pianist, a creative composer, and an inspired improviser, in addition to the leadership ability he clearly displays as the person in charge of this fiery, hard hitting ensemble.” -- Russ Musto (Village Voice)
“The performances range from melancholy and contemplative to swinging and bluesy to exuberant and burning.” -- Jazz Times
“Keith Javors played tastefully all night.” -- The Dallas Morning News (1995 show w/ Gerry Mulligan)
“The quartet doesn't stray far from ghosts of the Motor City sound. Javors knows what it takes to craft a listenable album…doesn't override with aimless strokes.” -- Bloomington Independent
“The ensemble never misses a cue or misreads a note, enabling Keith Javors to score a bulls-eye on his second album as director. When all is said and written, university-level ensembles simply don't get much better than this, and I have no Second Thoughts about recommending the album to anyone who appreciates a well-endowed contemporary big band.” -- AllAboutJazz.com
“One of the best teachers in the country…the guy to take it to the next level.” -- Bunky Green
Keith Javors - 'Mo' City Jungle' Review
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by John Kelman With a style that is reverential yet modern, Keith Javors’ Mo’ City Jungle pays t...by John Kelman
With a style that is reverential yet modern, Keith Javors’ Mo’ City Jungle pays tribute to the Detroit jazz scene with a programme of nine originals that bristle with energy, group interplay and soloing of the highest order.
Javors is a thirty-something pianist who was also an educator at the University of North Florida; but refuting the adage that “those who can’t do, teach,” Javors’ writing and playing could only come from someone who has done plenty. With a style that favours the modal approach of artists including McCoy Tyner and Mulgrew Miller, Javors writes charts that blend the rhythmic energy of Art Blakey with a more modern harmonic approach. The title track is a minor blues that features the front line of alto player Dane Bays, tenor man Juan Carlos Rollan and trumpeter Ray Callender navigating a theme that winds in and out of dissonance. That these players, and the rhythm section for that matter, are complete unknowns is a disservice that demands rectification.
It is not often that a straightahead post bop album from a group of unknowns comes along that makes one stand up and take notice. Comparable in energy and invention to Kenny Garrett’s 2003 career highpoint, Standard of Language , this may be Javors’ third album as a leader, but is the first to be released on an independent label of significance which is putting some promotional effort behind it.
Even more relaxed tunes like “Sierra Nicole’s Bossa” have vibrancy, a sense of excitement and discovery, which sets them apart. Rollan states the theme with confidence, offering nuances that pay homage to Michael Brecker without being imitative. “Ian Keith,” a jazz waltz, demonstrates an admirable group dynamic; Javors’ accompaniment demands attention without dominating and his solo swings fiercely. Drummer John Davis is clearly in synch with Javors and Ravelo as he pushes and pulls the rhythm, creating credible moments of tension throughout.
“Conclusion of the Matter” is an uptempo romp that, again, features a front line theme that uses close harmonies to create a sense of tension and release. “In Essence” is a medium tempo walker, again demonstrating Javors’ ability to deliver a memorable chart that provides a solid foundation over which the soloists can extemporize. Callender’s trumpet solo is especially impressive; a thematic solo that is the definition of spontaneous composition.
Chris Potter is quoted on the cover, describing the recording as “extremely high calibre¦a collective spirit of ‘going for it’ that brings the music joyously to life.” Not since Garrett’s Standard of Language and Terence Blanchard’s Bounce has there been a post bop album this exciting. Mo’ City Jungle is not for the faint-at-heart; this is vital, energized music that is captivating from start to finish. Keith Javors and the entire group deserve to reach a larger audience; hopefully this recording will help make that a reality.
Oleg Kireyev Interview and Profile
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By Jamie Cosnowsky The Western press has referred to saxophonist Oleg Kireyev as the “Revolution...By Jamie Cosnowsky
The Western press has referred to saxophonist
Oleg Kireyev as the “Revolutionary Reedman from
the Urals.” His musical career started in the town of
Ufa where he studied the piano and first fell in love
with jazz. Although the jazz scene was happening
a half a world away, young Oleg was influenced by
Chick Corea and John Coltrane. He spent time mastering
In 1985, he founded the band Orlan and quickly
became a phenomenon on the Russian jazz scene.
Kireyev was fascinated by Bashkir folklore, and was
the first to take an ethno-approach to jazz. His music
includes folk instruments such as the “kurai” which
is a Bashkir wind instrument and the “kubyz” (Jew’s
harp), along with his guttural singing technique
that is always an audience favorite. He combined
jazz standards with exotic folklore (ethno-jazz) and
Orlan’s popularity grew quickly as the global music
scene was exploding.
With the success of Orlan and performances in
Russia and abroad, Kireyev traveled to Poland. He
spent three years there, in the early 1990’s, playing
in the country’s best jazz clubs—and playing with
Poland’s most popular jazz artists. In 1994, Kireyev
won a scholarship to study with jazz legend, Bud
Shank, and traveled to the United States. Kireyev
was invited to perform at the Montreux Jazz Festival
in Switzerland where he was awarded a diploma
for outstanding performance. He has also performed
at the Birmingham Jazz Festival and the Ealing Jazz
Festival in England, where he continues to tour. His
2000 recording, Love Letters, had strong sales in the
Incorporating traditional swing, Moldavian
tunes, African rhythms and jazz into a distinctive
art form, Kireyev recorded his latest CD, Mandala,
in 2004 with percussionist Njaga Sambe (Senegal);
guitarist Valery Panfilov (Moldova); bassist Victor
Matiukhin (Ukraine); drummer Ildar Nafigov (Tatarstan);
keyboardist Valery Belikov (Ukraine) and
Kireyev on saxophones (Bashkiria). The result is
a mix of ancient tunes of Asia with a striking contemporary
sound, very high energy and exceptional
musicianship. The CD will be released in the United
States in April, 2008 on the Jazzheads label.
Jazz Improv met Oleg back in October when he
was in town for Jazz Improv LIVE! Convention and
Festival 2007. We caught up with him again to find
out more about the man behind the music.
JI: Can you talk about your upcoming concert at
Symphony Space with your band, Feng Shui Jazz
Theatre. How often are you able to perform in the
OK: This is the first show for The Feng Shui Theater in
New York. Our previous show was in Texas during the
SXSW festival in March, 2007 and we used a slightly
different format—different version. As for myself, the
last time I was in New York in October of 2007. I had
several gigs in New York clubs, and was part of the
showcase during the Jazz Improv LIVE! Convention,
along with other American musicians. We performed
my original compositions written in a straight-ahead
style. I love the States—the birthplace of Jazz. New
York is a Mecca for me, as it is for any jazzmen. I have
not traveled much in the United States. I would love
to be able to perform with The Feng Shui Theater,
and we are working now on presenting the show in as
many cities in the U.S. as possible.
JI: Talk about your early years growing up in Russia
and how you first became interested in music. What
was the spark that made you become interested
OK: As a child I was very drawn to musical instruments,
and had different musical compositions in my
head. Music mesmerized me; creating images in my
imagination. Sometimes images themselves created
musical resonance. My uncle, my mother’s brother,
was the first one to recognize this interest in music
and the instruments. He took me to the music shop
to buy a violin. My parents had no money for the piano.
Seeing my hesitation in front of the violin, they
went for it and together with my uncle bought the
Soviet piano on credit, which was unheard of at that
time. I am still thankful for this choice. My violin experience
might have wound up being so negative that
it would have prevented me from pursuing music at
all. I also don’t think the neighbors would have enjoyed
my violin exercises. I entered the music school
in Ufa (in the Urals) and spent seven years studying
piano. At that time, there was no way to study jazz
in Russia. My school curriculum was based on classical
music. Sometimes, to avoid tedious repetitiveness
of the school homework, I would start improvising
or just play melodies that I heard in my head. Once
I heard “The Shadow Of Your Smile,” it became the
beginning of the path of my creative development. I
was told that it is called jazz.
JI: How has Russia embraced jazz as an artform?
OK: The Russian public is very musically advanced,
and educated in many different forms of jazz music,
from mainstream to very sophisticated avant-garde.
In the past several years, themajority of interest is focused
on so-called “world music.” I know that this is
true for Europe as well. In the recent years, jazz education
in Russia has reached very high levels. Young
musicians are able to travel internationally, which
encourages their integration into the international
jazz community. At the same time, I have to point
out the differences. In Russia, as well as in other
Eastern European countries, there is a prevalence of
melody, compared to Afro-American culture where
rhythm rules. Because of that, Russian and European
jazzmen sometimes lack in “groove,” — something that is an essential part of life for American musicians.
It is easy to explain. The roots of jazz are in
Africa, while European and Eastern European culture
is known for classical music forms: Tchaikovsky,
Beethoven, Bach and other European geniuses.
JI: Talk about your creation of Ethno-jazz and the
influences that you draw from.
OK: I consider myself a mix of two races— being
born in the Urals, the place of residence of several different
nations like Bashkirs, Tatars and others. It was
a natural progression for me to be involved and interested
in different cultures. Bashkiria borders Asia
and Europe — so Asian culture was always part of my
life, and influenced my creative development. Asian
rhythms and melodies are different from American
or European ones, and at the same time, are similar.
An exotic tapestry of sounds and forms can be created
using the musical fantasy of a jazz musician and
different moods. It becomes possible because of the
knowledge of different ethnic cultures and music
folkloric traditions. Combining African rhythms
and Moldavian melody, you achieve something that is
impossible to imagine in pure jazz or ethnic interpretations.
You can argue whether these creations have
a right to exist. But the reaction of the public is the
only true proof. The emotions these melodies inspire
in the listening public are real. I play “mainstream”
jazz with great pleasure and feel very close to the “old
school” of Dexter Gordon, Coleman Hawkins, as
well as the contemporary styles of Michael Brecker
and Joshua Redman. My original compositions are
written in both traditional jazz formats as well as in
the contemporary straight ahead jazz. In the 1980’s,
I recorded a disc called Bashkiria Legends. It featured
all original compositions using ethnic instruments
and electronics. My band was called Orlan and was
one of the first international bands in Russia that was
capable of this kind of experiment with fusion, ethnic
music and electric jazz instruments. This record is
now a collectable. In the 21st Century, ethno jazz and
mainstream are equal parts of my music. Since 2001,
the ethno jazz project, Feng Shui Theater, combines
not only Bashkir-Tatar influence, but absorbs and
combines influences of other world music cultures.
Our inspiration can come from different sources
both in ethnic and stylistic forms. The interpretation
of the melody can be brought by a French sonnet or
an opera star. We share the stage. The results are a fusion
of the most heady jazz and Italian opera. At this
point in time, I have more then ten recordings done
in different genres and styles.
JI: Who are some of the influential artists with
whom you have performed? And how have they created
different demands on, and challenges to your
musical perspectives, life understandings, and otherwise
helped you grow?
OK: In 1989, Miles Davis’ rhythm section musicians
were in Warsaw, Poland. Meeting musicians of that
level left the most massive emotional impression on
me. At later times there were more creative meetings
with outstanding musicians and great personalities
like Bud Shank, Hal Galper, Steve Ellington, Ray
Alexander and Adam Nussbaum. I later toured with
Nussbaum, as part of a European-American band. It
was a seven city tour of Russia. In 1994, I took part
in Bud Shank’s Summer School, and that was a great
experience. He was an amazing person and a musician
to know. I have met Herb Alpert there and other great musicians. These meetings only reinforced my opinion of the nature of jazz:
“Massive swing, total attention to each other, awareness of the listeners and sense
of humor.” — the combination of the parts make for a great show.
JI: Could you discuss the relevance for you as an artist, to approach this music as a
road to be traveled, with the opportunity for a lifetime of growth and learning, as
opposed to a destination to be reached.
OK: Jazz can become a personal religion and meaning of life for a musician. Partially,
it is true in my case, since the music was present in my life from my childhood.
At the same time, I never forget that jazz is only one road towards creative
and emotional development. You can get lost following the road and become just a
technician who is going through the motions, rather than being an artist.
JI: What are some of the challenges you face and expect to face as an independent
artist, and how do you make them work for you?
OK: The major challenges involve the recording of jazz. It has always been a problem
in Russia, because of the lack of recording studios, and professional, talented
sound engineers, that are capable of creative collaboration with the musicians.
Also, it is hard to organize quality music tours in Russia — since most of venue
managers still have an old Soviet time mentality. There are very few professional
music/artist managers to work with, or concert impresarios. It is slowly changing
and in the recent years we are seeing more and more quality performing venues
being open that are appropriate for international stars. Personally, my major challenges
are Moscow traffic jams.
JI: Could you talk about the kinds of positive thinking in which you immerse
yourself to maintain and drive your enthusiasm and creativity every day?
OK: In my personal life, I try to surround myself with good music. My tastes range
from classical music, any kind of jazz to pop and rock. I live outside of Moscow, in a
very peaceful home, surrounded by woods, very close to the museum that belonged
to Lenin. I ride my bicycle in the park surrounding the museum—probably following
the same paths as the Proletariat leader himself. It was my personal choice
to leave the hustle and bustle of Moscow. I spend summer evenings on my roof,
counting the planes and thinking of people flying in them, and contemplating the
“beginnings” of music. Where does it come from? I have not found the answer to
that question yet. In my opinion, a composer is the conductor of world energy,
harmony and beauty—what he/she can hear.
JI: In addition to your involvement in music, what other activities help provide
balance in your life?
OK: Reading Eastern philosophies, traveling as part of my music tours, and my
family and friends are what make my life complete.
JI: Is there anything that I have not asked you about that you would like to talk
OK: In the past couple of years I was lucky enough to meet a number of the outstanding
jazz performers of our times: Joshua Redman, Antonio Sanchez, Al Foster, Scott
Hamilton and many others. All of them are not just excellent musicians, but very
open and friendly people. We have a Club, in Moscow, located 300 meters away from
the Red Square. It is called “Union of Composers,” where we play jazz music for the
Muscovites as well as for guests of our city. We are proud to support the music and
make it a part of people’s lives. You can visit the website at http://eng.ucclub.ru.
Oleg Kireyev - 'Mandala' Review
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By Gray Hunter I try a lot of new music out at work. Sometimes it’s distracting, sometimes it’s ...By Gray Hunter
I try a lot of new music out at work. Sometimes it’s distracting, sometimes it’s boring and then there’s stuff like Oleg Kireyev's Mandala. It makes you wish you were sitting at home with a wall full of speakers and a growler of craft beer and nothing else to do. It’s a canorous album that grooves the day along.
Jazz fans may very well be quite aware of Kireyev's contribution to the world of jazz. For others, here’s a little bit of info on him. He was born in Bashkiria, a republic of Russia in the southern Urals. He began playing at a very young age. He earned a scholarship and studied in the US with Bud Shanks, himself a lauded saxophonist. Kireyev was leader of the Russian jazz fusion group Orlan and he likes to infuse Asian melodies and African rhythms into his swinging sound. He's released at least ten other CDs.
His opinion of the nature of jazz is stated on his official website. For Kireyev, jazz is “massive swing, total attention to each other, awareness of the listeners and a sense of humor.” These elements are on display on this five-track jazz experience.
It opens with the title track “Mandala,” an energetic, bustling song full of the “massive swing” that Kireyev appreciates. It starts with a fabulous drum/guitar combo that is worthy of intellectual rock, ala Rush, but the sax is center stage here and it shines brightly. The CD is all about balance, it seems, and so it ends with “East” which contains the same sax progressions and swing as “Mandala.” The last track has a harder guitar sound and is without the gutturals in the first track. It’s a little more guitar heavy. It also contains elements of all the other tracks. It’s a perfect summary and conclusion to the whole record.
The second track, “Ai ya Haiya” (or “Intro,” as the name is given on the website), brings the tempo down. It’s a beautiful track, slow and tender, ripe with feeling. Interestingly, it seems that some of the same notes from “Mandala” are included here, only much more subdued. “Zhok” most clearly shows the Oriental influence. It’s mystical and undulating and eminently romantic.
The band, the music, simply gels – that “total attention to each other” shines through. They each understand where the other is going and the direction of the song as well. The sense of humor that Kireyev spoke of manifests itself in the light-hearted feel of each track. Mandala is a masterfully balanced recording - clean, bright, and ingenuous. It leaves you feeling triumphant.
And if you listen to it at work, you can imagine yourself on some kind of magical Oriental adventure instead of sitting at a desk. Plus, you'll love the odd looks you receive from co-workers as they hear the saxophone wafting from your speakers.
45 minute sets in cluding original compositions and jazz standards. Typical feature performance is 1-2 hours, club dates longer. This formula can be modified as needs require.
There are no upcoming dates at this time.