Kayhan Kalhor is born on Azar 3, 1342 SH in Eslamabad-e-Gharb, Kermanshah Province. He is an Iranian Kamancheh and also Setar, Tanbur, and Shah Kaman player, and composer. He was a professional in playing music by the age of thirteen, and he immigrated to Italy when he was seventeen. After a while, he went to Canada and he was graduated in music program from Carleton University in Ottawa.
Nowadays, he is known by the unique sound of his Kamancheh and he regarded Master Ali Asghar Bahari as his role model in playing Kamancheh. He started his professional career with Dastan Ensemble which resulted in a concert in Vahdat Hall in which Iraj Bastami sang. But it was through Night, Silence, Desert, a collaborative album with Mohammad Reza Shajarian and others, that he was truly appreciated. His creativeness and composition in this album made this album one of the most popular and best-selling ones in the last two decades. He benefited from the Iranian folk music players’ experiences such as celebrated dutar player, Haj Ghorban Soleimani, Goshma player, Ali Apchori, and dayereh player, Hossein Babi.
Kalhor tried to introduce traditional Iranian music. Collaborating on different projects with various international artists all around the world, he gained a worldwide reputation. He said: “Working with international music ensembles, not only improved my music and Iranian music, but also took it to the audiences among whom it has never been before; and this is the main purpose.” As an ensemble member of Silk Road Ensemble (a musical collective of multinational players), Kayhan Kalhor and the ensemble won a Grammy. He released some albums in Iran such as It's Winter, Without You, Faryad, Saze Khamoosh, Night, Silence, Desert, Soroude Mehr, In the Mirror of the Sky, Journey to the Other Side, the First Matutinal Meeting, the Wind, Silent City, Blue As the Turquoise Night of Neyshabur accompanied by magnificent Chinese cellist, Yo-Yo Ma.
“There is a huge historical inferiority complex in our culture which makes us feel always that we are inferior to others, especially the west. I believe being universal means that the others perceive our culture as an ancient one that had a great role in creating the cultural aspects in the world, and this music is its historical and social creation”, he said about his being universal.