Shahin Novrasli

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Shahin Novrasli
"Emanation" release, New York 2017
"Emanation" release, New York 2017
Background information
Born (1977-02-10) February 10, 1977 (age 44)
Baku, Azerbaijan
GenresJazz, Contemporary Jazz, Jazz-Mugham
LabelsJazz Village, PIAS

Shahin Novrasli (born February 10, 1977) is an Azerbaijani jazz and classical pianist, and composer[1][2]

Early years[edit]


Born in Baku, Azerbaijan, on 10 February 1977, Shahin is a descendant of celebrated 19th century Azerbaijani poet Mirza Alesker Novres. His father, professor Novras, and mother, economist Naila, instilled their sons with their own knowledgeable love for good music. At three years old, Shahin was already displaying an interest in music and rhythm. His first major public performance, aged 11, was in Azerbaijan State Philharmonic Hall for a symphony orchestra concert by composer Azer Rzayev. In Gulya Namazova’s class at music college, Shahin was a very serious student of classical music and displayed great skill in performing a huge range of works by Mozart, Bach, Chopin, Beethoven, Rachmaninov and other composers.[3] This classical background is often to be heard in his jazz compositions[4] but his love for American music - its jazz, rhythm, harmony - prevails. Combining all the musical skills, from playing to composing, jazz opened the way for Shahin to express his inner world, his music and it was not long in becoming the main focus of his creativity.[5]

College and Music Academy[edit]

From 15 to 19 Shahin immersed himself in his favoured music, listening to the great pianists: Ahmad Jamal, Oscar Peterson, Bill Evans, Keith Jarrett, Chick Corea; all the while studying harmony and composition. Graduating from the Bulbul Music School, he moved on to the Azerbaijan State Music Academy. Here he also dedicated time to analysing the music of the legendary Azerbaijani jazz pianist Vagif Mustafazadeh, creator of a synthesis of jazz and traditional Azerbaijani Mugham music. Vagif’s compositions still feature in Shahin's repertoire.[6]


From 1997 he began to play in America and Europe in different formats: solo,[7] trio, quartet….[8] There have also been experiments; adding different instruments to the group,[9] including his own voice. Shahin has recorded three live albums: Live in Moscow, Live in Prague Castle and Jz'Mu, Live in Baku. There is also the experimental album Eternal Way, and Bayati,[10] recorded while living and touring in America and released on the French Bee Jazz label. His detailed study of mugham added another ingredient to his compositions and concerts,[11] furthering the mix of West and East.

-"Shahin Novrasli & Ahmad Jamal celebrate the releases of their respective albums". -Qobuz-

Certainly a defining moment in Shahin’s work and career was his meeting with Ahmad Jamal.[12][13][14] In 2014 in America, Shahin met Jamal’s manager Laura Hess-Hay; she introduced him to Ahmad Jamal, who rated his music highly[15] and is to this day he representing Shahin to the world.[16]

"He is one of the great pianists what I ever heard of" - Ahmad Jamal -[12]

Jamal also co-produced his 2017 album "Emanation",[17] which received UK Vibe award as "Best Jazz Albums of 2017",[18] album was released on the French label Jazz Village, PIAS.[19] In 2019, September 13 on Jazz Village,(PIAS) alongside Jamal's "Ballades" Shahin released his album " From Baku to New York City", produced by Ahmad Jamal.[20]

Cover of " From Baku to New York City".jpg


Personal life[edit]

In 2007, Shahin married Natavan Novrasli. Natavan is a classical singer, a soloist with the Azerbaijan State Academic Opera and Ballet Theater[22] and also an Honoured Artist of Azerbaijan. They have two sons, born in 2008 and 2015.


Year recorded Title Label Notes
2000 Jz'Mu Own Trio with Ruslan (bass), Iskender (drums)
2001 Live in Moscow Buta Trio with Nathan Peck (bass), Sasha Mashin (drums)
2003 Eternal Way Buta Quintet with Nathan Peck (bass), Sasha mashin (drums), Arslan Novrasli (tar), Nurlan Novrasli (kamancha)
2006 Live in Prague Castle Multisonic Quartet with Nathan Peck (bass), Sasha Mashin (drums), Chris Hemingwey (sax)
2013 Bayati Bee Jazz Trio with Nathan Peck (bass), Ari Hoenig (drums)
2017 Emanation[19] Jazz Village, PIAS Quintet with James Cammack (bass). Andre Ceccarelli (drums), Irakli Koiava (percussion), Didier Lockwood (violin)
2019 "From Baku to New York City" Jazz Village, PIAS Trio with James Cammack (bass), Herlin Riley (drums)


  1. ^ Larkin, Cormac (April 20, 2017) "Shahin Novrasli: a virtuoso pianist and so much more".The Irish Times
  2. ^ Harris, George W. (June 12, 2017) "Shahin Novrasli: Emanation". Jazz Weekly.
  3. ^ France Music (April 6, 2014) "Moderne et futur classique, le pianiste Shahin Novrasli". France Music
  4. ^ AzerNews (May 23, 2017) Shahin Novrasli – presented by legendary Ahmad Jamal in Paris". AzerNews
  5. ^ Coulers Jazz (May 19, 2017) A beautiful journey from the East to the West". Coulers Jazz
  6. ^ Baku Art (March 12, 2012) Shahin Novrasli will act in Paris with a concert devoted by Vagif Mustafazade". Baku Art
  7. ^ Note, Blue (June 15, 2016) "OPENING ACT: Ahmad Jamal Presents: Shahin". Blue Note'.
  8. ^ Dore, Christophe (May 15, 2017) "Le talentueux pianiste Shahin Novrasli au festival Jazz à Saint-Germain-des-Prés". Lefigaro Culture.
  9. ^ Санкт-Петербургская Государственная Консерватория (Ноябрь 14, 2009) "Джазовый концерт Шаина Новрасли".Санкт-Петербургская Государственная Консерватория
  10. ^ Fordham, John (February 6, 2014) "Shahin Novrasli: Bayati – review". The Guardian.
  11. ^ Nicholson, Stuart "Jazz and Culture in a Global Age". Jazz and Culture in a Global Age.
  12. ^ a b Qobuz, Interview "Shahin Novrasli & Ahmad Jamal celebrate the releases of their respective albums".Video Interview
  13. ^ Alley, Blues (May 15, 2017) "Ahmad Jamal presents Shahin Novrasli". Blues Alley'.
  14. ^ Delor Music (May, 2017) "Video: Ahmad Jamal Presente Shahin Novrasli".DelorMusic
  15. ^ APA (May 22, 2017) "Shahin Novrasli – presented by the legendary Ahmad Jamal in Paris". APA.
  16. ^ The AzerNews "Shahin Novrasli – presented by legendary Ahmad Jamal in Paris".AzerNews
  17. ^ Spectable (May 20, 2017) "Ahmad Jamal presente Shahin Novrasli « Emanation »".Spectable
  18. ^ UK Vibe "Best Jazz Albums of 2017".UK Vibe
  19. ^ a b PIAS (April 7, 2017) "Jazz Village Releases Pianist/Composer Shahin Novrasli's Label Debut". PIAS.
  21. ^ DL MEDIA MUSIC (September 13, 2019) DL MEDIA MUSIC
  22. ^ Actors Azerbaijan State Academic Opera and Ballet Theater".Azerbaijan, Opera

External links[edit]