For this absolutely positively final* edition of Kyrgyz Music Friday, I’m posting all resources I can possibly think of so that you can keep track of your favorite artists from Kyrgyzstan.
Step 1: use Chrome and take advantage of its auto-translate function (it won’t work for Kyrgyz-language websites, but it’s good enough to make sense of Russian-language sites.)
Is there a particular artist you want to keep up with? I’ve found that most artists in Kyrgyzstan are woeful at keeping up with social media (or, at least, the ones I use. I’ve never ventured into Russian-language social media like vkontakte or odnoklassniki), but sometimes they’ll posts bursts of updates regarding new videos or songs on Facebook, Twitter or Youtube.
Here are all of the artists featured on Kyrgyz Music Friday who have some sort of online presence that’s worth keeping track of. After that, a few music and pop-culture websites that will post news and new videos and songs from artists in Kyrgyzstan or other countries in Central Asia.
Tata Ulan: His song Assalam Aleykum was featured on Kyrgyz Music Friday, and he also has a Twitter account and Facebook page. He doesn’t have his own Youtube channel, but you can easily find a lot of his videos from other users.
Non-Stop: I’ve had to stop myself from posting too many of their songs; it seems like they released a lot of videos at once during one stretch. I’ve featured Kyrgyzstanim, “Kyzdar ay, Baldar ay” on Kyrgyz Music Friday. I haven’t been able to track down a website, Twitter account or Facebook page for them (I guess that’s the trouble with having a common name for your group).
Gulzada: She was the first Kyrgyz Music Friday video that I posted, with her song “Jaz“. I also wrote about two live performances of hers that I saw, her album debut and the Voices of Nature concert. She has a Twitter account and a Facebook page.
Eholami: One of my favorite bands to see live; I can’t even count how many shows of theirs that I’ve seen. I’ve featured their songs “Akuli” and “Chaynik“, plus they performed at the Bishkek Block Party. They have a facebook page and a Soundcloud account where you can hear a lot of their songs. (Edit, they also have an official website. Thanks for the tip, Irina!)
Dad Manki: I can’t help but love these guys, they’re true rock and rollers (plus, the lead singer adopted Mamajan!). I posted their video for the song “Destroyer” on Kyrgyz Music Friday, plus they have a Facebook, Twitter, and Soundcloud.
Oakland: A rap duo that performed on the song “Malishka Bee” with Nurbek and CeeTee, and also had their song “Odnajdi v Bishe” featured on Kyrgyz Music Friday. They have a Twitter account, but links to other songs and videos of theirs can be found on the Headliners’ Soundcloud and Youtube pages, linked below.
Nurbek Savitahunov: I would say Nurbek is definitely the crowd favorite of Kyrgyz Music Friday. He’s had three songs featured on the blog, “Malishka Bee“, “Vnutrevenno“, and “Bishkek City“. He has a Twitter account, a Facebook page, and a Youtube channel.
Mirbek Atabekov: That unattainable dreamboat! Although I never saw him in concert, I’ve featured two of his songs on Kyrgyz Music Friday; “Sagyngan Kezde” and “Aldadyn“. He has a Facebook page, a Twitter account, and an official website (but it has autoplay music so I won’t post the link in protest).
The Rolls: Some of the coolest rockers I met in Bishkek, and definitely a huge part of Plov For Two’s introduction into the music scene (they also played at Plov For Two’s first show). They play amazing, spot-on covers of all sorts of songs. Even though they’re most well-known as a Beatles cover band, they have expanded to many other genres that they rock equally well. They played at the Bishkek Block Party, which is unfortunately the only time I’ve featured them on the blog. But they are busy-bees on social media, so check out their Facebook and Twitter pages. Also, Daniyar is the guitarist for the Rolls and tweets here and runs the Stayin’ Alive blog, focusing on live music performances in Bishkek, which also has its own Twitter account. And now they’re hosting a weekly party called Saturday Satisfaction, featuring performances from different bands, movies, and other fun things, which is so popular that it has it’s own hashtag, #SatisfactionKG.
Dayir Ismadiyanov: I’ve featured three of his songs on Kyrgyz Music Friday, “Estey Jur“, “Sagynba”, and “Janym”. He has a Twitter account, an official Facebook (one that you “like”) page and a personal Facebook page (one that you “friend”) that he seems to update more regularly (it’s all public though, you don’t actually have to send him a friend request).
Headliners: This is a record label/musical collective run by CeeTee (who rapped on “Malishka Bee”), which represents artists like Oakland and XTZ DJ. I haven’t featured XTZ DJ on the blog, but his album features a lot of our favorite artists (Mirbek Atabekov, Nurbek, Omar, etc). Headliners has a Facebook page, Soundcloud and Youtube account, and CeeTee has a Twitter account.
Another good resource for keeping up with Kyrgyzstan’s current pop culture (not just music, but TV and movies too) is Eldar Supataev’s Youtube channel. Random story, I went to an event at Loft, which is a warehouse that was converted into cool studio spaces and frequently hosts parties. It’s way way on the outside of town, relative to wherever I was living at the time. A friend and I were walking along the street outside of Loft trying to find a taxi home, when Eldar pulls up and asks if we would like a ride. Of course we would! He didn’t know us, but I quickly figured out that I followed him on Twitter already (because I’m weird?). He played a bad guy in Bishkek, I Love You, but he is actually a nice person in real life. Another fun fact, he was driving Nurbek’s car (!!!). As a result of being connected with so many of Bishkek’s entertainers, he seems to have a pretty good idea of what’s going on and keeps an up-to-date Youtube channel with interesting videos.
I hope this has been helpful for people who enjoy music from Kyrgyzstan! If you have any other links to add, or artists/songs/videos you think I (or anybody else reading this) might enjoy, feel free to leave a comment.
*Hmm, I say that, but I already have a few more KMF posts up my sleeve. Stay tuned.