Eastern Voices


Alim & Fargana Qasimov, Yulduz Turdieva
Ibrahim Keivo, Ayshemgul Memet, Salar Aghili

catalog number 21069

"A listening experience unlike any you have had before." (Fanfare magazine, US)

In 2010 Dreyer.Gaido Musikproduktionen started the new series EASTERN VOICES. The series is featuring outstanding musicians from the Middle East and Central Asia. Recordings with Alim Qasimov, Yulduz Turdieva and Ibrahim Keivo received an outstanding echo between the US and Australia. The compilation "Eastern Voices" presents highlights of the first productions. A vocal culture that is "spellbinding" (FRoots), also for lovers of classical music.


Ayshemgul Memet
The female voice of Uyghur muqam and folk songs

Catalog number 21067

Being one of the oldest cultures of Central Asia, Uyghur music has its special place among the Turkic nations of the mysterious Silk Road. Muqams, folksongs, religious songs are transmitted orally from generation to generation and have influenced (as well having been influenced by) different cultures around the area.
The Uyghurs are a Turkic ethnic group who live in North-Western China, in the region of Xinjiang which means New Territory in Chinese. The Uyghurs are Muslims (Sunnites) but Shamanism, Buddhism and Manichaeism has had a marked influence on their culture. Belonging to Central Asia (although always forgotten to be mentioned as a part of Central Asia), Uyghurs share similar linguistic and cultural heritages with other Turkic nations such as Uzbeks, Kazakh and Kyrgyz.
Xinjiang is a mountainous and barren area with oases full of life. The old Silk Road attracted thousands of adventurers and tradesmen. Many traditional songs have swayed along the endless sandy tracks on journeys.
Music is an important part of Uyghur culture and Uyghur identity. From very early times Uyghur music has been mentioned in Chinese historical sources as a highly developed art. Uyghur music from the far west was considered by Chinese royal ensembles to be the most inspiring. Some musical instruments even traveled to the Tang dynasty and have been adopted in Chinese music. After its islamization, Uyghur music adopted the great tradition of Muqam (Maqâm, Mugham) and created a powerful musical heritage.

I was 13 years old when I heard a Muqam for the first time. It was a short fragment from muqam Panjigah. The beauty of this music magnetized me. I knew that muqam was my destiny.” Ayshemgul Memet

Ayshemgul Memet, vocals
Shohrat Tursun, tambur
Ilyar Ayup, percussion


Salman Gambaraov & Bakustic Jazz
Live at Morgenland Festival Osnabrück

Catalog number 21063

Salman Gambarov, piano

Emil Hasanov, bass

Vagif Aliyev, drums

Mirjavad Jafarov, oud & tar

Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan, is a fascinating musical metropolis: traditional mugham, symphonic music (the first conservatory in the Soviet Republic was built here) and a lively jazz scene have made the city a musical epicentre in the Caucasus. One of the most important exponents on the jazz scene is the pianist Salman Gambarow. Together with the ensemble Bakustic Jazz, which he founded in 1996, he gave a highly acclaimed concert in 2009 at the Morgenland Festival Osnabrück which is now available on this fantastic CD.
“… Gambarow, Hasanov and Aliyev celebrate the high art of trio playing with the aesthetics of a Keith Jarrett. However, the third piece makes it clear that these musicians are not from the USA, but from Baku: a fourth person joins them on stage, Mirjavad Jafarov, who adds the oriental colours of the string instruments Tar and Oud to the jazz idiom. What is sometimes tried out as a spontaneous ‘musical happening’ is something which is here part and parcel of the band’s structure and is therefore taken totally for granted. And so something really special happens: two completely different musical worlds merge. … high-energy jazz at its best.”
Martina Binnig in Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung


Yulduz Turdieva
The rising star of the East

Catalog number 21061

This CD presents several distinct facets of the professional music of Inner Asia: the Uzbek tradition (in its two aspects, classical and popular) and the learned Persian and Azerbaijan tradition. However, far from being merely a patchwork of brilliant performances, this program is providing a unity by an outstanding singer, a unique case in modern times of an artist who, despite her young age, masters several musical idioms and classical styles, which are commonly considered so difficult that it would take half a lifetime to master them.
Although there are many brilliant singers in Uzbekistan, Yulduz stands out because of her exceptional musical qualities and her adaptability to diverse classical genres. Her communicative passion, her natural joy of singing have enabled her to free herself of the academic structures within which other Uzbek stars - who have also gained fame on the international scene - are stubbornly confined. Her artistic instinct, her radiating presence, her charm and human qualities all combine to designate her as a diva predestined for worldwide stardom.
Jean During

Yulduz Turdieva, vocals
Ulugbek Temirov, doyra
Qahramon Boltaev, tar & rubob
Abduvohid Mirza-Ahmedov, gijjak & violon


Alim & Fargana Qasimov Ensemble
Intimate dialogue

Catalog number 21060

German Record Critics’ Award 4/2010

“One of the greatest voices in the world” - Le Monde

“Qasimov is simply one of the greatest singers alive” - New York Times

“One of the greatest voices of the century: If you want to make a real discovery, listen to Alim Qasimov’s voice.” - FolkRoots

Press releases and audiences reactions are enthusiastic when talking about Alim Qasimov, the singer from Azerbaijan. This was also the case with the concert which this extraordinary musician gave at the Morgenland Festival Osnabrück, now available on this recording.
riental music between the Levant and northwest China is based on modes called maqam, shashmaqam, muqam or mugham according to the region.
There is no music more complicated and or requiring more virtuosity than the mugam of Azerbaijan. These mugam have also spread into jazz, opera and symphonic music, something quite unique.
Alim Qasimov is the most outstanding exponent of traditional mugham. For several years now he has been performing together with his daughter Fargana, who was also his pupil. Concerts with the Kronos Quartet and the cooperation with Yo Yo Ma on his Silk Road Project have brought Qasimov an increasing audience in the west.
Very occasionally, very very occasionally, a recording arrives that so transfixes that work stopps and pleasure, enlightenment and education take over. Intimate dialogue is one of those.  ... If there is any finer vocal duo performing art music anywhere on the planet right now, please send the details to the usual address. Intimate dialogue is the sort of stuff to send shivers down your spine.“
Ken Hunt in FRoots

“ ... and the results are spellbinding. ... what I heard on this CD really turned my head. Qasimov and his daughter perform with what devotees of flamenco often refer to as duende . (The English word “soul” approaches the meaning, but does not come close enough.) Both of these performers have remarkable voices - remarkable both in terms of range, flexibility, and expression - and when they get on a roll, it sounds as if their souls are being rent in two. Qasimov, a tenor by operatic standards, has an especially remarkable set of vocal cords. The highly melismatic vocal style might take some getting used to, but stick with it, and I think you will have a listening experience unlike any you have had before. ... The booklet notes tell you everything you need to know, and the English translations of the lyrics are blessedly provided. The live recording is atmospheric, and will involve you even more deeply in the performances.“
Raymond Tuttle in Fanfarre Magazine

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