US-based musician Vijay Iyer’s album "Accelerando" was named as the #1 album in the Rhapsody Jazz Critics’ Poll yesterday. Together with with bassist Stephan Crump and drummer Marcus Gilmore, Vijay Iyer is no stranger to his music being incredibly well-received – the Vijay Iyer Trio‘s album "Histrocity" was nominated for the Best Instrumental Jazz Album Grammy award in 2010!
Born and raised in the US, Vijay Iyer is of Indian Tamil heritage. He began his musical journey at a very young age, learning Western classical violin from the age of 3. Iyer kept up with his studies as well as his musical training, and completed an undergradute degree in mathematics and physics at the prestigious Yale University. He then went on to gain a Masters in Physics from the University of California at Berkley. As he became more and more involved in music, he pursued an interdisciplinary PhD in Technology and the Arts with a focus on music cognition. A faculty member at the Manhattan School of Music and New York University, Iyer has also written for a number of publications including The Guardian, and the Journal for the Society of American Music.
From a musical point of view, the last year was a highly eventful one for Vijay Iyer, who received numerous accolades including Jazz Artist of the Year and Pianist of the Year in the 2012 Down Beat International Critics’ Poll – in fact, he ended up being the first artist in the magazine’s 60-year history to clock up five titles simultaneously!
"Accelerando" went down incredibly well with the critics; it was described as a "gift of an album" by the BBC, with Pitchfork deeming it "spellbinding". The album features both original compositions and covers, including a cover of Michael Jackson’s track "Human Nature".
Aside from his work within the Vijay Iyer Trio, the talented musician has released solo work including his 2010 album "Solo". In 2011, he released the South Asian-inspired "Tirtha", a collaboration with esteemed guitarist Prasanna and tabla player Nitin Mitta.
Over the years, Vijay Iyer has produced an impressive amount of praise-worthy work that has been extremely well-received by critics and jazz-lovers all over the world. We’re looking forward to hearing more from this incredibly talented musician!