The pianist Aziza Mustafa Zadeh was born on December 19, 1969, in Baku Azerbaijan in the former USSR, into a musical family. Her father was a Jazz pianist and one of the first to incorporate ethnic musical styles, in his case the traditional improvisational mugam, into western Jazz music. Her mother was a professional singer who collaborated with her father in his musical endeavors. Aziza Mustafa Zadeh started playing the piano when she was 3 and gave her first concert at 14. Despite her father’s untimely death when she was only 10, his musical ideas influenced her significantly. She also received training in classical music at the Baku Conservatory. At the age of 17 she won Thelonious Monk piano competition in Washington, D.C. That same year she moved to Germany with her mother. She released her first album Aziza Mustafa Zadeh in 1991 and in 1994 won both the Phono Academy Prize, Germany's most prestigious award in music and the Echo Prize from Sony, for her second album Always. Since then she has released half a dozen critically acclaimed albums and collaborated with several jazz stars such as Toots Thelemans and Stanley Clarke. She currently resides in Mainz, Germany and continues to tour and compose. In her leisure time she paints.
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