'Eldar Has The Fastest Hands in Jazz ...
Melds Russian Soul ...
With American Razzle-Dazzle!'
YOUNG JAZZ PIANO SENSATION ELDAR
WELCOMES SPECIAL GUESTS
CHRIS BOTTI & ROY HARGROVE
ON HIS LATEST SONY CLASSICAL CD
ELDAR LIVE AT THE BLUE NOTE
A year after he made a critically acclaimed debut on the Sony Classical label with a self-titled album, the young jazz pianist Eldar returns with Eldar Live At The Blue Note, made during performances at New York's Blue Note and featuring as special guests a pair of jazz trumpet virtuosos, Chris Botti and Roy Hargrove. Eldar Live At The Blue Note will be released on Tuesday, May 30, 2006.
Eldar Live At The Blue Note introduces four original tunes by the pianist – including the title track – and includes his fresh interpretations of Cole Porter's "What Is This Thing Called Love?", Bobby Timmons' "Dat Dere," Billy Strayhorn's "Take the A Train" and the Latin classic "Besame Mucho." Columbia Records recording artist Chris Botti joins Eldar on the Don Raye/Gene De Paul classic "You Don't Know What Love Is," and Roy Hargrove collaborates on Thelonious Monk's "Straight, No Chaser." Completing Eldar's trio are bassist Marco Panascia and, on drums, Todd Strait.
Eldar returns to the Blue Note for performances July 5-9, during a busy summer that also includes his debut at the Hollywood Bowl Playboy Jazz Festival (June 18) and performances in Japan (June 19-28). Following the Blue Note dates, Eldar performs at the Interlochen Festival (August 3); San Jose Jazz Festival (August 19); and Monterey Jazz Festival (September 25). In March, he completed a European tour that took him to Amsterdam, Barcelona, Milan, Berlin, Hamburg and Munich.
At the age of 19, Eldar continues to confirm the extraordinary promise that wowed jazz veterans when he first performed in the U.S. eight years ago, after his family emigrated from Kyrgyzstan. He has already been featured on the 42nd annual Grammy Awards broadcast, and he took the top prizes in the 2001 Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival and the 2002 Peter Nero Piano Competition. In 2004 Wynton Marsalis selected Eldar to appear at the gala opening of Jazz at Lincoln Center's Rose Hall and the following year he was a featured artist at the International Association for Jazz Education conference in Long Beach, California. Last year Eldar appeared at some of the top jazz clubs in the country, including Yoshi's in Oakland, Jazz Alley in Seattle, Dizzy's and the Blue Note in New York; Scullers in Boston, Zanzibar in Philadelphia and Blues Alley in Washington, D.C. He also performed at the Kennedy Center and the Orange County PAC.
"The vigor, stylistic range and dazzling speed displayed on his debut album Eldar (Sony Classical) have already earned this emigrant from Kyrgyzstan the usual comparisons," The New York Times wrote, when the recording was released early last year. "Eldar combines Art Tatum's superhuman velocity with echoes of Oscar Peterson's grandeur ... an all-things-to-all-people prodigy whose formidable technique is wedded to a mature grasp of musical structure."
Reviewing a live performance last June, Billboard wrote, "Eldar has the fastest hands in jazz ... melds Russian soul (in the ballads) with American razzle-dazzle (the up-tempo tunes) in standards, not-so-standards and originals ... His nine-tune set brought the house down ... He seems to easily channel Art Tatum and Oscar Peterson in his approach, but to his credit he gets lost in the music in his own way."