Country Road project is experimental collaboration between Igor Iachimciuc (cimbalom & guitar) and Jim Stout (double bass), two artists with different background. The main idea of the project is a combination of Eastern European folk material with standard jazz form, and the improvisational concept. Cimbalom originated in Hungary and is used mostly in folk music. The sound of cimbalom in jazz music, which listeners of present album can experience, is a rare phenomenon. Igor Iachimciuc was born in the Edinets Republic of Moldova, where he began to study the cimbalom (string-percussion instrument) at age ten at a children's music school. Later, while studying the cimbalom at the Musicescu Academy of Music, he won 3rd and later 1st prizes at the National Competition 'Barbu Lautaru'. He has also studied guitar and piano. In 1983 he began to study composition at the College of Music in Chisinau, Moldova, where his characteristic folk music influence emerged. He continued his studies at the Academy of Music, composing works ranging from folk, jazz, classical, to new music for solo instruments, chamber ensembles, choir, and symphony orchestra. In 2001 he began his music composition Ph.D. work at the University of Utah. Mr. Iachimciuc's awards include 1st prize in composition at the Silver Chrysanthemum National Competition and being named the most promising young composer in Moldova, as well as the 2003 Wayne Peterson's Prize in Music Composition. In 2004 and 2008 he has been awarded a prestigious Robertson's scholarship. Igor Iachimciuc's works have been purchased by the National RTV Company and performed by various Moldavian ensembles, as well as by San Francisco's Earplay New Music Ensemble, and New York New Music Ensemble. In 2005 Mr. Iachimciuc won a commission to write an orchestral composition for Utah Arts Festival. A top-demand bassist for recordings and performances, Jim Stout has backed many top Mountain West artists. A gifted soloist, Stout's innovative and fluid style rates him among the very best on his instrument. Stout has served on the jazz faculty at the University of Utah and is equally at home on the acoustic, 6-string electric, and fretless basses. A student of legendary bassist, John Patitucci, Stout performs with amazing agility, seamlessly weaving imaginative patterns into virtually all jazz styles and rhythms. A drummers' dream.
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