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Album Review

In Rez Abbasi's music, as in his life, East meets West. Born in Pakistan, he grew up in California, studied music in India and has worked in New York. Very aware of jazz, Western classical music and Indian music, he combines all three on this continually intriguing set. An organ trio with Gary Versace is joined in spots by two saxophonists, tabla, a haunting Indian vocalist, and hand drums. Abbasi switches between guitar and sitar, sounding not only comfortable in each of the styles but easily combining them together to create stimulating new music. Is this soul-jazz, fusion, Indian music, post-bop or world fusion? The answer has to be: All of them and none of them. Well worth several listens.


Born: 27 August 1965 in Karachi, Pakistan

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '90s, '00s

A flexible guitarist who plays mostly fusion but can also handle post-bop, hard bop and standards, Rez Abbasi showed a lot of promise playing around New York in the 1990s. The improviser was born in Karachi, Pakistan and lived there as a baby; he was only three when his parents moved to Los Angeles, where he was raised. Abbasi, who grew up speaking English as his primary language and doesn't speak with even a trace of a Middle Eastern accent, was 22 when he moved to New York in 1987. Abbasi considers...
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Bazaar, Rez Abbasi
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