Mike's Oud Forums
Not logged in [Login - Register]
Go To Bottom

Printable Version  
Author: Subject: John Bilezikjian - Latest News
Mike
Super Administrator
*********




Posts: 1562
Registered: 12-3-2002
Location: California, USA
Member Is Offline

Mood: Happy

[*] posted on 1-17-2015 at 07:38 PM
John Bilezikjian - Latest News


Sadly I have some bad news regarding the great John Bilezikjian and his health. Unfortunately, Helen and his sons have decided that his long struggle with kidney failure and weekly dialysis has come to an end. They have decided to place him on hospice at their home in South Orange County. They are doing their best to make sure he is as comfortable as possible in his home for his final days in this temporal life before he moves on to his eternal rest. I personally will never forget the few times I was fortunate enough to hang out with John in his music room at his house. Listening to his stories and his music and checking out his incredible ouds was just an amazing experience. Every once in awhile I'd call him up and say hey Uncle B, I've got so and so visiting me from wherever and they wanna come and meet you. He would be more than happy to have us over to hang out. We'd end up spending hours there and the time would go by so fast that we wouldn't even know that we had been there for 3 or 4 hours. He was always very generous with his time and stories. He is just an overall awesome guy.

I'm gonna miss you Uncle B, but I'm never going to forget you! I know you are going to be in a much better place and are not going to have to worry about how you're going to feel in the morning after dialysis. Ever!

If you guys have any of John's music listen to it and keep him and his family in your thoughts and prayers. Helen is also taking calls if you would like to send the family your regards and best wishes. The phone number is on John's Foundation website. Speaking of . . . if you would like to donate to his foundation, you can get information on how to do so here: http://johnbilezikjianfoundation.com








View user's profile Visit user's homepage View All Posts By User
John Erlich
Oud Junkie
*****




Posts: 1331
Registered: 8-26-2004
Location: California, USA
Member Is Offline

Mood: Oud-Obsessed

[*] posted on 1-17-2015 at 09:24 PM


Thanks for the news Mike. I will keep John and his family in my thoughts and prayers.
View user's profile Visit user's homepage View All Posts By User
Adel Salameh
Oud Junkie
*****




Posts: 235
Registered: 4-18-2008
Member Is Offline

Mood: No Mood

[*] posted on 1-18-2015 at 12:44 PM


This is very sad dear Mike... John is a great artist and he gave so much joy to his fans ... his music will live for a long time...My thoughts and prayers with his family ...
Adel
View user's profile Visit user's homepage View All Posts By User
Greg
Administrator
********




Posts: 916
Registered: 7-22-2004
Location: Brisbane, Australia
Member Is Offline

Mood: Serene

[*] posted on 1-18-2015 at 11:37 PM


I had the privilege to visit John with Mike a little over three years ago and he was in poor health even then. I have had a couple of email contacts since and was aware that his health had not improved. What a wonderful, talented and generous man. John will be in my prayers every night.

Greg
View user's profile View All Posts By User
Ararat66
Oud Junkie
*****




Posts: 1025
Registered: 11-14-2005
Location: Portsmouth, UK
Member Is Offline

Mood: mellow yellow

[*] posted on 1-19-2015 at 01:00 PM


Very sad to hear this - it was his music that got me into this musical adventure in the first place. I just wish him and his family well.

Leon
View user's profile Visit user's homepage View All Posts By User
Mike
Super Administrator
*********




Posts: 1562
Registered: 12-3-2002
Location: California, USA
Member Is Offline

Mood: Happy

[*] posted on 1-19-2015 at 02:25 PM


The heavenly hosts have gained an oud virtuoso today. Play on and glorify Him Uncle B. John's worldly struggle ended this morning, Monday January 19th at 4:30am. The family wishes to pass along the following information about services celebrating John's life.

Friday January 30 @ 7pm - Vespers
McCormick and Sons Mortuary
25000 Moulton Pkwy
Laguna Woods, CA 92637
949-768-0933

Saturday January 31 @ 11am - Funeral
St. James Armenian Apostolic Church
4950 W Slauson Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90056
323-295-4588




View user's profile Visit user's homepage View All Posts By User
mavrothis
Oud Junkie
*****




Posts: 1671
Registered: 6-5-2003
Location: NJ/NYC
Member Is Offline

Mood: big band envy

[*] posted on 1-19-2015 at 04:20 PM


I was so sad to find out that I was not able to call in time to say goodbye. Just spoke with his wife and she very graciously told me about his passing away this morning.

It's so sad to lose this very generous and talented man.

I will miss him.





http://www.mtkontanis-music.com

"...desirable and comfortable as culture may be, an artist should not lie down in it. "
--Edgard Varèse
View user's profile Visit user's homepage View All Posts By User
Dr. Oud
Oud Junkie
*****




Posts: 1356
Registered: 12-18-2002
Location: Sacramento, CA, USA
Member Is Offline

Mood: better than before

[*] posted on 1-20-2015 at 05:43 AM


John was an inspiration to me nearly all of my musical life. He was also a great friend and I will miss him dearly. He gave so much joy to the world and was such a gracious man as well. His accomplishments were amazing in many different venues and musical styles. Not only a great oudist, but a composer, arranger, violinist and instrumentalist. One of my favorite stories was when he was studying for his college degree he was told he had to qualify on an orchestral instrument, so he did them all! God blessed us all for sharing his life.



View user's profile Visit user's homepage View All Posts By User
Jameel
Oud Junkie
*****




Posts: 1672
Registered: 12-5-2002
Member Is Offline

Mood: No Mood

[*] posted on 1-20-2015 at 06:56 AM


Mike sent me a text yesterday morning with the news. It's been a while since I logged in here, but I felt compelled to say a few words about my experience with John.

Thanks to Mike's generosity, a few years ago I spent a rather incredible couple of days with John. I saw many of John's incredible ouds, including the lavishly decorated pearl Manol. Certainly a highlight for any enthusiast. We had a nice dinner in So Cal at a seaside restaurant where John was performing for the evening. Funny story. We had left John's house in a hurry after visiting too long, and when we arrived John had realized that we'd packed everything (amps, mixing board, mics, etc.) into John's car, except for his oud! Mike raced back to John's house (about an hour round trip if I remember) to get his oud so he could play the gig at the restaurant. The other thing I remember about that night was the shish-kebab. The garlic just about blew our heads off. On our way back to Mike's place our first stop was for a case of tic-tacs. Had a great evening talking about music with John, with the Pacific ocean in the background. The next day we got together at Lee Varis' home and I got to hear John play a couple of my ouds along with Munir Bekken and a bunch of other fellow enthusiasts. It was a great time. I think John really enjoyed that day, seeing so many young people enthusiastic about music. You could see it in his face. There are some videos and pics about that weekend here. http://www.mikeouds.com/messageboard/viewthread.php?tid=7402#pid478...

But what I most remember about John wasn't his oud collection, or his playing ability, but rather his (and Helen's) warmth and kindness. Mike called him Uncle for a reason. He felt like a close relative. I will miss him, no doubt.

Eternal memory, Uncle B!





View user's profile Visit user's homepage View All Posts By User
DoggerelPundit
Oud Junkie
*****




Posts: 138
Registered: 7-28-2010
Location: Pacific Northwest
Member Is Offline

Mood: Odar

[*] posted on 1-21-2015 at 10:20 AM


I think no one who had ever met John, even casually, would easily forget him. John and I first met at a gig in 1967; he was 19 that year, and I was 20. He and his mostly family band were playing dance music at Zorbas folkdance coffee house in the San Fernando Valley. I had never seen or heard an oud before, and he graciously took the time (between sets) to explain what the instrument was and where the music was from. He even let me hold his oud while he showed me how to properly use the right arm. Over the years he often said to me that "the soul of the oud is in your right hand."

I recall a story which illustrates his remarkable musicianship. During the mid 1990s, I was privileged to attend his master classes at the ME music camp in Mendocino. Helen was always along to teach Armenian dance classes, using John's own recordings. One year he was sitting at the back of her class playing along with the recordings. There was trouble in that because the tape player Helen was using played the music about a quarter step sharp to concert pitch. No trouble for John though. He calmly played in tune by stopping all the normally open notes a quarter step up with his first finger, while playing the rest with fingers 2, 3, and 4, all a quarter step up as well, as smooth and tunefully as you please.

Many professional oud players often "visit" the oud's 6th, 7th, and 8th positions. John used them. The clip is from Laz Hvasi on his Armenian Diaspora album.

For me he was a friend, a mentor, and an inspiration. As Mike has rightly and touchingly put it, the heavenly hosts have gained an oud virtuoso. May he play forever.

-Stephen

[file]34150[/file]
View user's profile View All Posts By User
Giorgioud
Oud Junkie
*****




Posts: 287
Registered: 11-18-2011
Location: United Kingdom
Member Is Offline

Mood: Oudbsessed

[*] posted on 2-22-2015 at 01:41 PM


R.I.P. John Bilezikjan. My thought are with his family and loved ones
View user's profile View All Posts By User
sbj
Oud Lover
**




Posts: 22
Registered: 5-23-2014
Member Is Offline


[*] posted on 2-24-2015 at 01:05 PM


I liked his way of speaking Turkish (he had an accent) and also this particular version of this song composed by Yesari Asim Arsoy.
He tells in the beginning, that he dedicates this song to his grandmother.
Now, I dedicate it to him.
Allah rahmet eylesin.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZvXzkeexi5E
View user's profile View All Posts By User

  Go To Top

Powered by XMB
XMB Forum Software © 2001-2011 The XMB Group