Pianist Giorgi Mikadze joins famed artists Garrison, DeJohnette for Mikrojazz project

  • Mikadze (second from right) photographed with members of the Mikrojazz project. Photo: ibassmag.com.
Agenda.ge, 26 Sep 2017 - 18:21, Tbilisi,Georgia

Young jazz artist Giorgi Mikadze is part of a novel experiment involving celebrated names of the genre in efforts to change the sound and structure of music recordings.

Mikadze has teamed up with drummer Jack DeJohnette and bassist Matt Garrison for Mikrojazz: New Expressionist Music, a project led by German saxophonist Philipp Gerschlauer and guitarist David Fiuczynski.

The project involves music created and played in microtonality, a system involving intervals smaller than the customary semitone.

[S]ince our 12 note per octave musical language is becoming exhausted and repetitive, I think microtonality is a very natural and necessary development. I think this record will really change the way people hear and listen to music", said Fiuczynski in his preview of the initiative.

Recording the music in microtonality involves instruments tuned into the system, different from those set up for the traditional Western tuning of twelve equal intervals per octave.

It is fun actually, to mess up with this. When I play my solo and I press keys and they sound different, they are not tuned in our 12-tone system."
I think the tunes we are recording now sound unique, and that is the most important thing", Mikadze said in his impressions of the project.

The first recording of the project is set to be released in vinyl format in October through the RareNoise Records label. It will mark the efforts of Mikadze in collaboration with Garrison, who has toured with jazz legend Herbie Hancock, and DeJohnette, a former drummer for the celebrated Keith Jarrett Trio.

This marks another milestone of musical projects for Mikadze, who last July was selected to work as guest professor for the five-week Summer Performance Program of the prestigious Berklee College of Music in the United States.

The Georgian graduated from the US school with a degree in jazz piano performance and composition in 2014. He also holds a 2016 degree in jazz arts from New York's Manhattan School of Music, and in classical music, composition and performance from Tbilisi State Conservatoire in Georgia.

The young pianist has held a number of collaborations with fellow artists at both of his US schools that featured fusion of Georgian folk music with African and jazz music elements, as well as a mix of hip-hop performance with classical symphony instruments.

Last year Mikadze also became the first Georgian artist to sign with globally renowned musical instrument company Yamaha, joining a list of internationally acclaimed artists Alicia Keys, Chick Corea, Jamie Cullum and more.