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(Overall, this is his eighth recording as a sole leader.) Conceptually, An Ancient Observer is a poignant album focusing on the art of observing.
Tigran’s career has included an impressive number of accolades, including top piano award at the 2013 Montreux Jazz Festival and the grand prize at the prestigious 2006 Thelonious Monk Jazz Piano Competition.
The more tunes I learned—listening to recordings from the Armenian Folk Radio channel—the more I saw the rich potential for merging those with improvised music.
That started me on a lifetime journey.” Along the way, Tigran discovered the variety of Armenian music, including work songs, epic folk songs and war dances that were very different from region to region. “But they all had a modal basis with two specific constructions: a melodic line and a rhythmic line treated to a very specific ornamentation which adds the spice.
Tigran’s fresh sound is marked by an exploration of time signatures beyond 4/4 into 5/4 and 9/8, charged dynamics, the shifting between acoustic and electric modes of expression, all undergirded by an affinity to the grind of heavy metal.
A piano virtuoso with groove power, Tigran’s latest adventurous project is The Ancient Observer, his second solo album and his sophomore recording for Nonesuch.
In 2015, Tigran garnered the prestigious Paul Acket Award at the North Sea Jazz Festival and the following year earned the Echo Award (the German Grammy) for best international piano album of the year for his superb recording Mockroot.
It’s very specific even though it may be confused for Balkan or Iranian music styles.” While he studied classical music at an Armenian high school geared toward music studies, Tigran continued to grow on his own as a jazz pianist.For example, Dallas Opera's recent reversal of its declining ticket sales has been attributed to the marketing of the more lascivious parts of its performances.