Mahan Mirarab Trio
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Mahan Mirarab Trio

Vienna, Vienna, Austria | SELF

Vienna, Vienna, Austria | SELF
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"Guitarist Mahan Mirarab inspires awe by incorporating Persian folk and world music with jazz on new CD"

April 1, 2011 (Tehran, Iran) Written by Robert Sutton. Guitarist Mahan Mirarab saves the best for last, or at least at the end of a song on his new album, Persian Side of Jazz. In the explosive climax of "Dar-ol-jonoon," Mirarab's propulsive riffs lock in step with Wolfi Rainer's snapping drums. It's a breathtaking moment, the sound of two musicians lost in a groove, speeding forward with no sign of halting. It is pure bliss.

Persian Side of Jazz is one of the year's most unique and compelling releases mainly because the stylistic blueprint of Mirarab's compositions draw upon stylistic influences, mainly Persian folk and world music, that are exotic to stateside ears.

But Mirarab takes those genres and incorporates them in a jazz framework, creating a balance between comforting familiarity and refreshing newness. On "Haj Ghorban," Mirarab's guitar echoes spellbinding Middle Eastern sounds while its swinging groove is rooted in traditional jazz. In "A Week of Moonlight," Mirarab's playing reaches a higher level of consciousness; it is awe-inspiring in its starry-eyed dreaminess.

Although the music is without words, none are needed to sense how personal this album is from the emotions conveyed in Mirarab's guitar. To Mirarab, he is simply communicating what is inside him. "My first goal is to play the music that flows in my blood," Mirarab explained. "It's the music that I've experienced and listened from my childhood up to now. It's a mixture of the music of Iran, music that has been in my ears since I was a kid, and jazz. I've always tried to blend these two music languages and make a new sound by finding new changes over Persian melodies and also mixing jazz lines with my homeland's music."

Mirarab was born in Tehran, Iran on July 13, 1983. He spent his childhood with the Iran-Iraq War around him. After being introduced to the music of jazz greats like Charlie Parker and Wes Montgomery in his early teens, Mirarab became fascinated with the idea of being a musician but finding an education was not at arm's length. "At the age of 13 I got the chance to take the piano lessons, although it was not easy to find a place where you could get proper music lessons because I used to live in a small city, Babol," Mirarab revealed. "There was no music school or conservatory and even a teacher in Iran at the time so I started to play jazz and transcribing the solos and prepare myself to be a self-thought musician."

Mirarab's unyielding determination is the heart of Persian Side of Jazz. He made the album simply because of his love for music. "I try to make soulful music and enjoy playing it," he said.

More Information: - Jazz Corner


Persian Side of Jazz, 2011
Mahan Mirarab Trio
Mahan Mirarab (g)
Robert Jukic (b)
Wolfi Rainer (d)

Avareh, 2009
Naima Band
Hamzeh Yeganeh (p&k)
Mahan Mirarab (g)
Amin Taheri (d)
Kaveh Sarvarian (ney & tombak)
Habib Meftah Boushehri (per)
Dara Daraei (b)
Peter Akoup (b)

Abrang Quartet, 2008
Mahan Mirarab (g)
Hamzeh Yeganeh (p&k)
Dara Daraei (b)
Amin Taheri (d)

Peter Soleimanipour Ensemble, 2006
Peter Soleimanipour (ts)
Aida Nosrat (v)
Mahan Mirarab (g)
Peter Akoup (b)
Casra Mohtashemi (d)

Persianas, 2007
Bahram Aghakhan

Rumi 1, 2005
Pedram Derakhshani



Mahan Mirarab Trio:

The trio was established in Vienna after Mahan’s settlement in Austria. Their music is a collection of illustrations that were engraved in Mahan’s memory from his childhood and youthful days, embellished by modern elements. Mahan’s inspirations stem from the art of Iranian architecture, such as Bazaars and Mosques. The visuals are translated into a kind of musical language that could be comprehended by everyone from all over the world.
The Trio has played in different cities of Austria and other European countries. Their new album, recorded in Vienna in 2010, is called “Persian Side of Jazz”.

The Band’s Biography:

Mahan Mirarab
Born on 13 July 1983 in Tehran, Mahan entered the world of art with painting. He started playing piano at the age of 12 and switched to classical guitar after a year. He started to teach himself jazz, since there weren’t any teachers and schools of music in Iran. However, after the development of media in Iran in the mid 90`s, Mahan gained the opportunity to listen to jazz musicians and transcribed and analyzed their work. Mahan was also highly influenced by traditional Persian music and started to play the “tar”, one of the main Persian instruments.
He plays guitar and fretless guitar by looping different sounds and blending different styles such as Jazz, World, and traditional Persian music.
He established his first band with Dara Daraeei on bass and Amin Taheri on Drums in 2003.
In 2008, he finished his studies in Architecture in Tehran Art and Architecture
University and decided to move to Vienna. There he organized some concerts and recorded his new Album with Wolfi Rainer (drums) and Robert Jukic (bass). This album is a combination of Persian folk and traditional music with jazz.
Mahan also plays with different ensembles all around Europe as a guitar player and composer. He plays guitar and fretless guitar in Payam Trio in the Netherlands alongside Babak Maddah and Michael Strazt.
Mahan is currently completing his Masters of Conceptual Arts in Academy of Fine Arts Vienna.

Robert Jukic (Bass)

Slovenian bassist/composer Robert Jukic has been performing and recording music since the age of 15. The self taught electric bass player decided after high school to devote his life to music and started playing the double bass at the age of 19.
He received his Masters of Art at the University for Music and Performing Arts
Graz. He has performed internationally, alongside releasing 4 albums and composing for his band as well as for other projects. He was also awarded 2nd place jury award and audience award at the Jazzon 2008 Composition Competition. Robert keeps an open mind in life and music, that is why he performs with his groups and freelances with other projects, groups and artists, unburdened by stylistic or genre frames.

Wolfi Rainer (Drums)

Rainer was born in 1977 in Innsbruck, Austria. After taking his first musical steps on the piano, he started to play the drums at the age of 13. He studied at the local music school and the Conservatory of Innsbruck. Besides his activities in classical orchestras and marching bands, he also played in a rock band. He applied to the University for Music and Performing Arts (KUG). In 2004 he was sent to the IASJ Meeting in Freiburg to represent the KUG. In 2005 he finished his studies summa cum laude and thus received the principal’s appreciation award which enabled him to continue his studies in the USA. In 2006/07 he lived, studied and worked in New York City for six months. Besides his work as a sideman, Wolfi Rainer appears as the leader of his electronically orientated band Cosmonique and the Wolfi Rainer Band and has performed internationally. At the moment he lives as a freelance musician in Vienna.