The Best of Ivo Papazov – Album Review

The Best of Ivo Papazov – Album Review

Review by Nick Ellman, of Naughty Professor

Ivo Papazov is a modern day living legend and pioneer in his own right. The Bulgarian clarinetist is one of the creators of what is known as “Wedding Band” music in Bulgaria and fuses jazz and Stambolovo music. It is quite stunning to hear.

If you’re not familiar with Eastern European music, this might be a bit of an acquired taste for you. But hopefully you’re willing to hear something new because this whole genre is dense with harmony and rich melodies. Most of the albums on my top ten list here are rooted in Black American Music. But to me and my taste, Papazov brings a welcome departure from Western harmony and melody.


A standout track on this album for me is Ivaylovsko Horo. It’s like Balkan punk music and I’m very much into it. The melody is relentless in the best possible way and Papazov’s solo to follow is jaw-dropping. I love the way he plays around the major and minor third. His technique of trills and turns is mesmerizing and I don’t get tired of it. 



  1. Bavna Pesen I Bachevo Toro
  2. Ivaylovsko Horo
  3. Bavna Persen I Haskovska Ratchenitza
  4. Spassovsko Horo
  5. Dyadkova Ratchenitza
  6. Papazliysko Hora
  7. Bavna Pesen I Stamboliyska Rachenitza
  8. Chelekovsko Horo
  9. Dulboshka Rachenitza
  10. Mariykino Horo
  11. Kurdzhaliyska Rachenitza
  12. Hristiyanovo Horo
  13. Papazliyska Rachenitza
  14. Kurdzhaliysko Horo
  15. Kolarovsko Horo
  16. Iliykovo Horo


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