'I heard The Bills (band) and wanted to see who is this Richard Moody. He was playing and singing and I thought 'oh ya, this could work' - Amir Amiri
Richard Moody and Amir Amiri have a wonderful chemistry. It's almost as though destiny brought these two accomplished musicians together.
On Saturday March 1, they are releasing their debut recording Safar at the West End Cultural Centre. It's a tantalizing blend of eastern and western sensibilities.
They are also the featured guests on SCENE on Air with CBC's Bruce Ladan.
Amiri came to Canada from Iran nearly 20 years ago on a scholarship to study at the Banff Centre. While there, he became interested in collaborating with non-Persian musicians.
Then about ten years ago he started doing more theatre work. He eventually ended up collaborating with Manitoba Theatre for Young People.
People kept telling Amiri that he should meet violist Richard Moody. But Moody was always off somewhere, playing music or studying yoga.
Amiri finally met Moody in Vancouver. "I heard The Bills (band) and wanted to see who is this Richard Moody. He was playing and singing and I thought 'oh ya, this could work,'" recalled Amiri.
"It was his rhythm....the front end of the beat. He was very, very good. The rhythm string playing that he does is amazing."
For Moody, the two definitely clicked as musicians." The sound of the santur is very bright," he explained. "It's a hammer dulcimer basically....it's very bright, shimmery sound. And the viola is a very rich, deep, low vocal kind of sound. So the two sounds together seem to make a very complimentary sound."
Hear Moody Amiri at the West End Cultural Centre on Saturday March 1. Just before that, you can hear them in conversation with CBC host Bruce Ladan on SCENE On Air. The show airs every Saturday from 5 - 6 p.m. on CBC Radio One, 89.3 FM/990 AM/97.9 FM in Brandon.