Winter 2001 (9.4)
Left: Tabriz singer Yagub Zurufchi performed
an evening of Favorites from the 1960s and 1970s at a concert
held at Baku's Republican Palace in December 2001.
Zurufchi gave a Peace and Friendship Concert that filled the
Respublica Serai (Republican Palace) in Baku on December 15,
2001. Yagub, an Azerbaijani musician from Tabriz, Iran, currently
lives in Los Angeles but has also set up a recording studio in
Many Azerbaijanis from Iran who live in Baku attended the event,
as did members of the diplomatic corps from Iran, France and
Yagub was among the first foreigners to come to Azerbaijan while
the Soviet Union was in the process of disintegrating. He is
remembered for his performances at that time in Freedom Square
(then, Lenin Square), singing to the tens of thousands of Azerbaijanis
who were demonstrating in the streets for independence.
Much of the success of this concert was based on Yagub's choice
of repertoire in reviving many of the well-known and well-loved
songs from the 1960s and 1970s written by composers such as Jahangir
Jahangirov, Tofig Guliyev and Ramiz Mustafayev. Yagub also sang
"Ana Kur" (Mother Kur River), a song made famous by
the late Gulagha, and the all-time favorite "Ayrilig"
(Separation), written in the early 1960s by Ali Salimi. [See
AI 2.4 (Winter 1994), "Ali
Salimi, Composer, Putting Memories to Music." SEARCH at AZER.com.]
Yagub was accompanied by both folk and Western instruments. The
Azerbaijan's National Folk Instrument Orchestra included stringed
instruments (tar, garmon, kamancha, kanun), and percussion (naghara,
gochan naghara). Western instruments such as the violin, piano,
keyboard, drums, clarinet and oboe were also featured. Nariman
Azimov and Faig Salimov conducted the orchestra. Several women
perfomed the saz, which is not so rare for the Azerbaijan Republic
(as it is in Iran), as there is a Women's Ashug Group.
Yagub invited several guest performers onstage to join him, including
pop singer Mahbuba Karimova and Rafigha Khanim, a member of the
women's ashug group Khanim Ashiglar - both from Azerbaijan. From
Iran, musicians Rahim Shahriyari and Javid Sepehran also participated.
(9.4) Winter 2001.
© Azerbaijan International 2002. All rights reserved.
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