Francesco Turrisi – piano, accordion
Andrea Piccioni – frame and goblet drums, percussion
Fabio Tricomi – oud, vielle, kemenche, percussion
and special guests:
Lucilla Galeazzi – vocals
Mario Rivera – electric bass
Pietro Cernuto – Sicilian bagpipe
Zahr is the Arabic word describing a very common flower in the mediterranean area. This flower is known to Italians as “Zagara” and it's the flower of the orange tree.
Zahr is a project created by pianist, accordionist, percussionist Francesco Turrisi and percussionist Andrea Piccioni. Focussing primarily on the influence that arabic music has had in many countries touched by the Mediterranean Sea, the ensemble tries to combine Italian traditional music, jazz improvisation, mediterranean music and early music.
Zahr's first cd is released on Francesco Turrisi's own label Taquin records and it contains a selection of traditional Italian and Arabic melodies and dances and original compositions. The cd features an unusual instrumentation of piano, frame drums and the exotic colors of the arabic oud (lute), the persian kementche (spike fiddle), the medieval vielle (fiddle), the Sicilian Zampogna (bagpipe) and many amazing percussion instruments from Southern Italy, the Mediterranean and Iran.
The celebrated Italian traditional singer Lucilla Galeazzi appears as a special guest on two tracks: a very original rendition of a classic tammurriata from the Neapolitan area and an interpretation of a pizzica dance from Puglia called “o re re” (also known as the Tarantella dell'avena).
Francesco Turrisi is an Italian pianist, accordionist and percussionist. He completed his jazz BA and MA studies at the prestigious Royal Conservatory of The Hague. Since 2004 he plays harpsichord and percussion with acclaimed early music ensemble l'Arpeggiata. In 2006 he moved to Dublin where he currently resides. He is the leader of many successful Irish and international groups such as Tarab (mixing Irish and Mediterranean music), Sarabanda (a contemporary jazz project inspired by 17th century Italian music), Zahr (Arabic and southern Italian music).
He has played with with Dave Liebman, Furio Di Castri, Gianluigi Trovesi, Gabriele Mirabassi, Savina Yannatou, Nils Landgren, Maria Pia de Vito, Theodosii Spassov, The King’s Singers, Veronique Gens, Pepe el Habichuela, Lucilla Galeazzi, Bijan Chemirani, Zohar Fresco, Pedram Khavar Zamini,