Eshpai, Yakov, Russian composer of Mari extraction, father of Andrei Eshpai; b. near Zvenigorodsk, Oct. 30, 1890; d. Moscow, Feb. 20, 1963. He studied violin and singing in Kazan, and later at the Moscow Cons. He publ. important collections of national songs of the Ural region, particularly of the Mari ethnic group. He also composed vocal and instrumental music on native themes.
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire