Aram Bajakian for the Musician's Show

Wednesday, April 5, 2017 - 8:30pm to 9:00pm

Tune in to the end of the Musician’s Show, this Wednesday at 8:30 PM EST for an interview with guitarist Aram Bajakian. Bajakian has played beside rock legend and Velvet Underground frontman Lou Reed during his final final two tours in 2011 and 2012. Bajakian also performed over 100 concerts alongside multiple Grammy winner Diana Krall during her Glad Rag Doll Tour in 2012 and 2013. He has also shared the stage with saxophonists John Zorn and Yusef Lateef, guitarists Marc Ribot and Nels Cline, saxophone virtuoso James Carter, bass legend Jamaaladeen Tacuma, violist Mat Maneri, the original Can singer, Malcolm Mooney, Polaris Prize winner and Inuk singer Tanya Tagaq, and Canadian super group, the Barenaked Ladies.

Bajakian is a member of bassist Shanir Blumenkranz’s group Abraxas. The band has released two albums on John Zorn's Tzadik label, the first being the heralded Book of Angels Volume 19. In February of 2014 the band released Psychomagia, a book of music written especially for Abraxas by John Zorn. In the summer of 2014, Bajakian performed in Grammy winner Frank London’s (Klezmatics) new band the Glass House Project, which recreated the musical culture of Hungarian Jewish communities destroyed by the Holocaust. Bajakian leads several of his own groups, including Kef, a chamber string trio that plays arrangements of traditional Armenian Songs. Kef's first album is featured on the Tzadiks's Spotlight Series, and was listed as one of the Best World Music Albums of 2011 by PopMatters.

Bajakian's solo album there were flowers also in hell (2014, Sanasar Records), has received universal praise, and was called "One of the best instrumental rock records of recent years," by New York Music Daily. Critic Robert Christgau said of the album, "Every track singular, every track strong. A MINUS." In October of 2014, Bajakian and his wife, vocalist Julia Ulehla, released a new album of Moravian Folk Songs entitled Dálava. The album has been called "groundbreaking" by Vancouver’s Georgia Straight, “a masterpiece” by, and “a work of creativity and imagination par excellence” by Inner Magazine. The music takes Czech folk melodies transcribed by Ulehla’s great-grandfather, Dr. Vladimir Ulehla, over 100 years ago, and reinvents them in a contemporary musical context.

Bajakian’s most recent album is titled Dolphy Formations, which features Lou Reed, John Zorn, and Malcolm Mooney of CAN, as well as the Vancouver trio Handmade Blade: Peggy Lee (Wayne Horvitz, Dave Douglas) on cello, JP Carter (Destroyer, Dan Mangan) on trumpet and Bajakian on guitar. Bajakian's composition is based on Synthetic Formations that were given to Dr. Yusef Lateef in 1961 by saxophonist Eric Dolphy, and included in his book, the Repository of Scales and Melodic Patterns.