See The World Through Jazz: Top 5 International Jazz Fests To Attend In 2019
Source: Visit Copenhagen
If you’re a jazz lover, start crossing jazz fests of your bucket list with our 2019 selections. These must-attend jazz fests are dotted around the world, helping you satiate your wanderlust and desire for tasty jazz licks in the same adventure.
2019 has already been kicked off with the “Grand Gathering” at Cape Town Jazz Festival, setting the bar for jazz fests to come. The Cape Town festival was on March 29th, where jazz fans lined up to hear and see London-based producer Alfa Mist and Los Angeles trio, Moonchild. Visitors to Cape Town also celebrated the life of South African Hugh Masekela, who passed away in 2018.
Read on for five more upcoming jazz festival sensations.
1. New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, April 26 to May 6
Celebrating its 50th anniversary as a major influence on the culture of American music and art, the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival is hosting a special bash in true Louisiana style. In honor of the milestone, the festival is adding an extra day of Jazz fest and a “Locals Thursday” that provides discounted tickets to Louisiana residents.
Drawing thousands every year, the line-up this year is as spectacular as ever. The back-to-back weekend festival from April 26 to May 6 includes musical giants such as Diana Ross, Earth, Wind & Fire, Van Morrison, Leon Bridges, Ziggy Marley, Katy Perry, Dave Matthews Band, Fleetwood Mac, Jimmy Buffet, Al Green, and many more.
2. The Montreal International Jazz Festival, June 27 to July 6
Celebrating another milestone, the Montreal International Jazz Festival is holding their 40th anniversary this year from June 27 to July 6. Held every year in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, the Montreal Jazz Fest holds the 2004 Guinness World Record as the world’s largest jazz festival. The all-encompassing mecca of culture and music is known for featuring about 3,000 artists from more than 30 countries, playing at more than 650 concerts throughout the festival, including 450 free concerts.
Join the wild jazz bonanza this year when you come to watch artists like Norah Jones, Youn Sun Nah, Rodrigo Y Gabriela, Melody Gardot, George Benson, Bryan Adams, Buddy Guy, Pink Martini, Peter Frampton, and many more.
Move across the Atlantic to Europe and kick off the top European jazz fests with the Montreux Jazz Fest in Montreux, Switzerland. The biggest music festival in Europe, the Montreux Jazz Fest has had a noble hand in supporting, influencing, and recording countless artists, jazz and other genres, throughout Europe for decades.
This year the headliner is Elton John, performing on June 29 outside in the Auditorium Stravinski with Alps and Lake Geneva in the background. Although this will be Elton John’s first concert ever at the Montreux festival, it will also be his last, as this is his farewell tour. Say goodbye to one of rock’s greatest golden legends in an experience that will last a lifetime. Other artists in the line-up are to be announced closer to the festival date. While you’re there for the festivities, relax at the casino’s pool party and try your luck with casino games, adding to your European adventures.
The heart of jazz begins in Cascais, Portugal, with the EDP Cool Jazz festival. Held across two sprawling green spaces in Cascals, this summer concert series features jazz music, along with other styles and sounds from internationally renowned performers. You can bask in vivid culture of Portugal’s pocket of paradise, surrounded by scenic Parque Marechal Carmona and the Hipodromo Manuel Possol.
The line-up for this year includes Jamie Cullum, Diana Krall, The Roots, Tom Jones, Snarky Puppy, Jessie J, Jacob Collier, and more to be announced.
Make your last stop for jazz in the summer at the Copenhagen Jazz Festival in Denmark. Spanning from July 5 until July 14, this festival was first held in 1979 and has since become one of the most distinguished jazz festivals in the world. Jazz is especially important to Denmark and the city of Copehagen with Vinterjazz events beginning in February.
This year the Copenhagen Jazz Festival line-up includes Gilberto Gil, Gladys Knight, José James, Marcus Miller, Hot 8 Brass Band, Dungen, Joshua Redman, Eliane Elias, Mariza, Oumou Sangare, and more. For a special treat, José Jones will celebrate legend Bill Withers on opening night. Known as a hub for European jazz, join the masses of jazz fans as the festival spills across the Royal Theatre, Copenhagen’s Opera House, and many small clubs and cafes that will make you feel at home while listening to the greatest jazz musicians in the world.