Saturday, February 10, 2018


On our first evening in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, we went to a concert in a small concert hall:
It had been a very long day and we were tired. I was envisioning struggling to stay awake as we listened to an average group of musicians play average music.

Not even close.

To start out, they had a lovely narrator who announced the numbers for us. She has the typical Uzbek features:

We quickly found out that "traditional" Uzbek instruments are completely foreign to us:

And what would you expect those instruments to sound like? Hang on to your hats, folks, and listen:
WHOA!!! Pretty fabulous, right? No falling asleep in this concert.

But it got even better with each solo performance.

Here is "Bahtcha Kuyrd" by Adyl Geray (What? Never heard of the piece or the composer?) performed by Shohruh Abdullaev on an instrument called a kashgar rubab:

"Moon River" by Henry Mancini (Aha! I've heard of that!). I'm not sure who the performer is or what his cello-like instrument is called, but he loves playing it as much as Steven Sharp Nelson of The Piano Guys loves his cello (and sometimes cello-like instruments):

Compare that to this:
Don't you agree that these two men (nine men?) need to play together? I wish I could introduce the Uzbek musician to Steven Nelson! (Are you out there, Piano Guys? You need to go to Uzbekistan, and take me with you, please!)

Then there was "Chardash" by Monti, performed by Javlonbek Bulombekav (awesome name) on the gidjak (another awesome name):

"Spring" by Abdukarim Usman, performed by Jasu Ahmedov on the nai-pikkol:

And finally, "Rhythms of Doira," performed by Maksud Rasulov on the doira, a combination between a drum and a tambourine that we saw played all over The Stans:

Who knew a classical music concert could be so fun, right, Bob? Bob liked it so much that the next day he purchased a painting of old men sitting around the fire having a jam session on these very same instruments:


  1. That's fun - I hadn't related the musical performance with the painting. I'm glad you got pieces of the music playing. I actually enjoyed it a lot, and was dreading it.

  2. Wild stuff! It was like you were let in a secret, watching the "flute" player and the conductor nod to each other as they played. Thanks for all the music clips.