By Laman Ismayilova
Baku's best live music venue hosted a concert of local jazz performers.
A wonderful gala concert took place at the Heydar Aliyev Palace this weekend, Trend Life reported.
The well-known Azerbaijani jazzmen, including People's Artist Enver Sadikhov, honored art workers Javan Zeynalli, Jamil Amirov, Akif Suleymanbeyli, Emil Afrasiyab, Tarana Makhmudova and Elbey Mammadzadeh`s trio, saxophonist Teymur, Suleymanbeyli, "Rast" and "Gaya" bands performed at the event.
Tofig Hasanov, presenter of the evening informed the audience about Azerbaijan's jazz history.
Baku became the home for the first jazz Orchestra, established in 1938 by two legendary Azerbaijani composers Niyazi and Tofig Guliyev.
Despite jazz was prohibited by the Soviet government to avoid the anti-Western propaganda, true lovers of jazz were continuing to listen to Western radio and energize music-lovers with favorite melodies at private concerts.
The revival of jazz in the Land of Fire started in 1960s, thanks to the active efforts of great national composers such as Gara Garayev, Tofig Guliyev, Rauf Hajiyev and Niyazi.
The love for vocal singing and jazz brought together four young talents including Teymur Mirzoyev, Arif Hajiyev, Rauf Babayev and Lev Elisvetskiy in 1961 to create famous national quartet “Gaya”, whose records were popular in more than 40 countries around the world including Soviet Union, Europe, America and Africa.
The “flowering” of Azerbaijani jazz is associated with the names of giants such as Rafig Babayev and Vagif Mustafazade, who experimented creating unrepeatable compositions, becoming the founders of a new jazz trend jazz-mugham. This unique genre assembles both a traditional Azerbaijan music and a classic American jazz.
Baku`s first jazz festival was held in1969. Baku Jazz Festival has turned into a tradition since 2005, promoting jazz in Baku and discovering new names.
Today, Azerbaijani jazz performers are winners of many international jazz festivals and competitions.