San Diego’s Kyrgyz Jazz Man

by Nathan Hamm on 5/9/2005

Former Peace Corps Kyrgyzstan volunteer Jodi sent along NPR’s story on young jazz pianist EldarDjangirov. Eldar is a native of Kyrgyzstan who now lives in San Diego and has a new album out.

His parents taught him to play the piano in their native Kyrgyzstan. The first thing he remembers learning was “C Jam Blues,” when he was 3. He later took classical lessons and was “discovered” at age 9 by the late New York City jazz aficionado Charles McWhorter, who saw him play at a festival in Siberia.

His album is available through NPR or the link on the right.


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Nathan is the founder and Principal Analyst for Registan, which he launched in 2003. He was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Uzbekistan 2000-2001 and received his MA in Central Asian Studies from the University of Washington in 2007. Since 2007, he has worked full-time as an analyst, consulting with private and government clients on Central Asian affairs, specializing in how socio-cultural and political factors shape risks and opportunities and how organizations can adjust their strategic and operational plans to account for these variables. More information on Registan's services can be found here, and Nathan can be contacted via Twitter or email.

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