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Famous Azerbaijani kamancha performer Habil Aliyev dies

Famous Azerbaijani kamancha performer Habil Aliyev passed away of heart and lung failure at the age of 89 on September 8.

Born in 1927 in the country’s Agdash region, Aliyev began to study subtleties of Azerbaijani national music, Mugham, from when he was seven years old.

He created miracles on his kamancha and made significant efforts to acquaint the whole world with this marvelous national instrument.

Thanks to him, many young people were inspired to take up playing the mesmerizing instrument.

People in many countries have applauded him, referring to him as the “Master of magical sounds.”

The prominent artist first familiarized European audience with the kamancha in UK, where he accompanied prominent national singer Rashid Behbudov. Their performances triggered a stunning reaction, and the British press quoted the mayor of Glasgow Garrisson as having called Habil Aliyev the “Azerbaijan Paganini.”

He filled the music venues with thousands of music lovers on his tours all over the world, including Tunis, Switzerland, Holland, Syria, the U.S., Germany, India, France, Pakistan, Japan, Greece, Italy, and Iran.

Aliyev’s records with unforgettable pieces were released in U.S. France, Japan, Greece, and Italy.

The unsurpassed virtuoso not only transmitted beautiful music into his compositions, but he also captivated and engaged in his own world.

He breathed new life into the styles of Mugham, such as “Bayati-Ghajar”, “Bestenigar”, “Bayati-Shiraz”, “Bayati-Kurd”, “Segah” and “Zabul.” His performances are a cascade of challenging motifs, which evoke an inexhaustible imagination of bright national coloring and musical patterns.

Five samples of mugham performed by Azerbaijani mugham luminaries including Habil Aliyev were included in the UNESCO “Collection of Traditional Music of the World”.

By Amina Nazarli



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