Armenian music part of me – interview with jazz pianist Macha Gharibyan

20:10, January 14

By Paruir Siniavsky

Jazz pianist Macha Gharibian has become a discovery of the French jazz in 2013 by releasing her first album called “Mars”. The daughter of Dan Gharibian, one of the founders of Bratsch band, Macha is playing the mixture of Armenia and American music made in Brooklyn, folk and Komitas. In an exclusive interview with STYLE Macha told about Armenian roots and her plans.

Tell a little about yourself

I was born in France, I am of Armenian origin. My father is Armenian and since my childhood Armenian music was in my soul that naturally had a huge influence on my works. I was brought up as a pianist playing classics. I was singer and played in a theater. At a certain point I decided to find something new and went to New York, where I met with very unusual musicians, and this was how jazz gradually came into my music.

How did your father and his music influence you?

My father and group Bratsch have affected my works, because they showed me what incredible music you can create from a mixture of different music and different styles. Since childhood, I have been used to that kind of a mixed lifestyle. Different cultures, languages and styles - all this was something normal for me. You should be open to the world. This allows each person to share a part of himself, his culture, and at the same time to learn everything. Armenian music is a part of me. I played with my father in 2006 when we came to Yerevan, visited Gyumri, Ijevan.

How did you have an idea to combine New York jazz and Armenian music?

I was playing Armenian folk but at the same time looking for something more interesting, and it just happen naturally. I was influenced by the meetings with musicians such as guitarist David Poto - Razel and drummer Fabrice Moreau. I always create my works instinctively. I do not think about what style I create or what music I belong to. I do not create a frame for my works. Prior to creating my first album, I asked myself how I can combine all my music desire and experiments in one piece, but in the studio everything went as it goes naturally.

What plans do you have? When will you visit Armenia?

I am on a tour in France with presentation of my album. I have recently visited a festival in Algeria and hope to visit Armenia with my band in the near future. I am running several projects that combine various ethnic sounds with jazz. As to the last concert in Paris, the audience was just amazing. I had a warm reception. The concert was broadcasted live on France Musique channel.

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