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Beka Gochiashvili: Beka Gochiashvili

img  Tobias Fischer

When you think of the prototypical piano prodigy, you most likely imagine some sort of musical Rain Man pounding away at classical pieces no one else has the guts to take a shot at.

In his debut LP, Gochiashvili, a 16-year-old from Tbilisi in Georgia, isn't a freaky sideshow at all, unless you find it impossible to wrap your head around complicated, highly technical runs being thrown into familiar formats, such as the subdued dinner-jazz in "Un Gran Abrazo" (the opener here) and the department-store-overhead ambiance of "For Keith." But we need to stop right here and note that Stanley Clarke is the acoustic bassist here, as is his Return To Forever rhythm-section battery-mate, drummer Lenny White; Clarke's gone on record stating that this kid is the biggest new jazz fixture since Miles Davis.

You can really see why he'd say such a thing – again, the technicality is mind-blowing, as is the curveball, "Herio Bichebo," wherein White all but reinvents the brushing technique underneath the melancholy Kit Kat Klub vocal of Natalia Kutateladze.

By Eric Saeger

Homepage: Beka Gochiashvili

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