Jazz that transcends genre borders: Isfar Sarabski announces his album "Planet" with Warner Music Group

"Boy, you’re gonna play a lot more!" - with these words by none other than Quincy Jones, Isfar Sarabski predicted a great career some time ago after a performance at Miles Davis Hall on Lake Geneva.

The Azerbaijani pianist, composer and arranger, who studied at the renowned Berklee College of Music in Boston, has announced his debut album "Planet" for April 30th 2021. You can already get an impression of his eclectic style of jazz with the music video for the title track. In the solo piano passage of the two-part title track, Sarabski sounds as if he was secretly trying to play jazz in the style of Rachmaninoff. A free snapshot meets hidden cadences that are not directly present in the first auditory impression. Isfar Sarabski combines the experimentation of Nils Frahm with the dreamlike of Ólafur Arnalds, the electronic explorations of Martin Kohlstedt with the symphonic brilliance of Max Richter and the jazz virtuosity of Herbie Hancock. During his scholarship at Berklee College of Music in Boston, Sarabski impressed fellow students and teachers alike with his curious and open-minded meander between jazz impressionism, the folklore tradition of his homeland and the exploration of electronic soundscapes. For him, genre boundaries are only there to connect them with one another through musical bridges.

Among other things, Sarabski adapted the music of Sophie Hunger (“Le Vent Nous Portera”), expanded the geography of his acoustic works by collaborating with the Tunisian singer and oud player Dhafer Youssef and signed up for collaborations with leading members of Baku's Club Scene together.

The path that Sarabski has been following for over two decades was laid in his childhood. His mother is a violin teacher and his father is a great music connoisseur who, in addition to jazz, rock, soul and funk, also appreciates Bach, Brahms and Beethoven. And his great-grandfather Huseyngulu Sarabski was revered in the Orient as a music pioneer, opera singer, musician, actor and playwright. Music is unquestionably an important part of Isfar Sarabski's genes. "My father's vinyl records were literally my toys," he recalls. "I was fascinated by the mechanics of the turntable, by the large black discs, and of course by the world of tones, harmonies and rhythms that revealed themselves. I remember exactly the feelings that my first perception of Dizzy Gillespie records, or recordings of the works of Bach and Chopin, triggered in me. How could it be that music could create images in my head? I had to find out".

Regarding the choice of the album title, Sarabski comments: “The album is called 'Planet' because it summarizes my feelings and views about our planet,” explains the 31-year-old. "In the compositions I reflect on the people, the events that have affected us all over the past few years, and the new situations we have to deal with, with the wish to enter into a dialogue with my listeners about them."