Eldar Djangirov

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Eldar Djangirov
Eldar Djangirov.jpg
Background information
Birth nameEldar E. Djangirov
Born (1987-01-28) January 28, 1987 (age 33)
Kyrgyz SSR, Soviet Union
OriginUnited States
Years active1996–present

Eldar Djangirov (born January 28, 1987), also known as Eldar, is an American jazz pianist. He was born in Kyrgyz SSR, Soviet Union to Tanya and Emil Djangirov, and is of Volga Tatar and Russian descent. He grew up in Kansas City, MO from the age of 10 and also lived in San Diego, California during his teenage years. As of 2016, he resides in New York City.[1]


Eldar began playing the piano when he was three years old. The first piece he remembers learning was "C Jam Blues". He later took classical lessons and was "discovered" at age 9 by the late New York City jazz aficionado Charles McWhorter, who saw him play at a festival in Siberia. The family relocated to Kansas City, drawn there in large part by the city's jazz history. During his Kansas City years, even before reaching his teens, Eldar already started building a reputation as a child prodigy, appearing on Marian McPartland's NPR show, Piano Jazz, when he was only 12 years old, being the youngest performer to appear on her show.[2] Eldar attended Interlochen Center for the Arts in his young teenage years. Eldar attended St. Elizabeth's grade school and the Barstow School in Kansas City. Eventually, the family moved to San Diego where he attended the Francis W. Parker School (San Diego), and then to the Los Angeles area where he attended University of Southern California's Thornton School of Music. Eldar's playing style is characterized by prodigious technique and musicality. Downbeat noted in a review by Bob Doershuk: "his command of the instrument is beyond staggering." He was signed to Sony Music at 18 and released 5 albums. One of the albums was nominated for a Grammy. Eldar has extensively toured throughout Europe, Asia, North America.

Eldar has been variously compared to Art Tatum, Oscar Peterson, Herbie Hancock and more;[3][4] yet he also seems to absorb harmonic expansiveness from McCoy Tyner and at times the lyrical sensitivity from Bill Evans.[5][6] Eldar performed at Grammy Awards telecast and was honored the first time in many years as a jazz artist. Eldar has also been seen on Conan O'Brien, CBS Saturday Early Show, Jimmy Kimmel Live and CBS Sunday Morning.


As leader[edit]

Year recorded Title Label Notes
2001 Eldar D&D
2003 Handprints D&D
2005 Eldar Sony Most tracks trio, with John Patitucci (bass), Todd Strait (drums); one track quartet, with Michael Brecker (tenor sax) added
2007 Live at the Blue Note Sony Most tracks trio, with Marco Panascia (bass), Todd Strait (drums); one track quartet with Chris Botti (trumpet) added; one track quartet with Roy Hargrove added; in concert
2007 Re-Imagination Sony With James Genus and Marco Panascia (electric bass; separately), Carlos Henriquez (double bass), David Lai (Fender Rhodes), DJ Logic (turntables, programming, effects), Mike Moreno (guitar), Todd Strait, Ali Jackson, and Terreon Gulley (drums; separately)
2009 Virtue Sony Some tracks trio, with Armando Gola (bass), Ludwig Afonso (drums); some tracks quartet with Felipe Lamoglia (sax) added; one track quartet with Nicholas Payton (trumpet) added; one track quartet with Joshua Redman (tenor sax, soprano sax) added
2011 Three Stories Sony Solo piano
2013 Breakthrough Motéma Music Most tracks trio, with Armando Gola (bass), Ludwig Afonso (drums); one track quartet with Chris Potter (tenor sax) added; one track quartet with Joe Locke (vibraphone) added
2013 Bach / Brahms / Prokofiev Motéma Music Solo piano; classical music
2015 World Tour Vol. 1 New Struggle Music
2019 Letter to Liz Twelve Tone Resonance Solo piano

As sideman[edit]

Year recorded Leader Title Label
2013? J. D. Allen Grace Savant
2013 Ali Jackson Amalgamations Sunnyside


  1. ^ Eldar Djangirov Biography
  2. ^ Piano Prodigy Keys into Jazz
  3. ^ Eldar - Blue Note New York Performance
  4. ^ Holden, Stephen. "Leaving Them All in the Dust", New York Times, June 18, 2005. Retrieved 2008-06-06. "Eldar, whose last name is Djangirov, combines Art Tatum's superhuman velocity with echoes of Oscar Peterson's grandeur"
  5. ^ Quotes about Eldar
  6. ^ Eldar Djangirov Redefines Jazz

External links[edit]