This past Saturday at the Cat and the Cream, many students left the Tigran Hamasyan concert reevaluating the true meaning of life. Known mainly as an Armenian jazz pianist who embellishes standard jazz with hints at Armenian styles, Hamasyan notably won the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz competition.
It started off with up beat, catchy jazz that was reminiscent of the European countryside, and even featured Hamasyan singing in Armenian. But soon enough, the synthesizers came out, the drums got more involved and the style morphed from modern jazz to a blend of jazz, electronic and heavy metal music.
I was flabbergasted when he started laying down some heavy dub step music with 11/8 time signatures. Everyone bobbed their heads and messed up along with the complicated music. Me and my friends agreed the drummer was almost Bill Cosby-esque in the awkwardness of his cymbal hits. Since he didn’t need the piano for his solos, Hamasyan would play on the low register of the synthesizer and made a pretty grungy, metallic sound that everyone loved. It was rocking, jazzy, and danceable all at the same time, it was essentially a new genre.
After the performance everyone was reconsidering the meaning of life, even those who don’t like jazz. If you ever get the chance I highly recommend you check out a performance of his.
Here’s his take on the standard “Someday My Prince Will Come”