Musaner: Jazz And World Music Fans Unite

This story originally aired on September 28, 2012.

Musaner means “the muses” in Armenian. It’s also the name of a Boston-based band that combines traditional Armenian folk melodies with western jazz. The result is something that bridges east and west; that’s both familiar and exotic, delicate and powerfully high energy.

Ara Sarkissian is the inspiration behind Musaner. Sarkissian, a classically trained pianist from Armenia, started the band five years ago with a collection of musicians from Boston with backgrounds in jazz, classical, and even a couple musicians who play traditional Armenian folk instruments, like the zurna, which sounds a bit like a bag-pipe. Sarkissian says he wants the band to represent a true fusion of musical influences.

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