You may not be able to retain or pronounce his name, but you sure will remember this young man’s playing. This is Beka Gochiashvili, a 16 year-old pianist from Tbilisi, in Georgia. If the jazz scene has welcomed and put under the spotlight new artists from more and more different countries, the small country of Eastern Europe is not known for providing many jazz virtuosi.
Well here is one for you. At 16 years old, Beka has already asserted himself in the jazz world as a great upcoming pianist, and we will probably be hearing about him more and more as things go on. The young pianist started playing at 2 years old, and was quick to get on stage, playing in Tbilisi jazz clubs at age 9, with influences such as Keith Jarrett, Chick Corea and Herbie Hancock. Since then, his career has known success after success, going from being a semifinalist at the Monk Piano Competition in 2011 to recording his first album in 2012, and developing a strong musical relationship with pianist Chick Corea.
Beka received praise from many of today’s jazz giants, mainly from Corea who called him “the best ambassador for Georgia’s culture,” Keith Jarrett’s legendary trio’s bassist Gary Peacock said of him that he was a “very fine young pianist with a lot of future promise.” Bassist Stanley Clarke said Beka’s story was “the best debut of a young musician since Tony Williams with Miles Davis“
Watch Chick Corea introduce the young Georgian pianist and sit down on the piano with him at the Tbilisi Jazz Festival in 2012. The video shows them play Corea’s famous hit Spain, Monk’s Straight, No Chaser, and Kenny Dorham’s Blue Bossa.