From July 4 to 13, Denmark’s capital becomes Europe’s jazz capital during the Copenhagen Jazz Festival. Now in its 30th season, the festival fills the air with jazz in all its forms, from bebop to fusion, swing and free jazz, at venues large and small throughout the city.
From Tivoli Gardens, to the Royal Theatre, the Operaen opera house, the famed Copenhagen Jazz House and countless small, intimate performance spaces, jazz fans can catch performances by headliners including Ornette Coleman, Wayne Shorter, Cassandra Wilson, Denmark’s New Jungle Orchestra and many more – a total of 900 concerts at 100 venues, with something for everyone and many free for all.
The 30th edition of Copenhagen Jazz Festival will take place in a few months. As always, the Danish capitol will turn into a regular jazz city with concerts everyday virtually everywhere. The major artists will perform at the Royal Opera, The Royal Theatre, The Royal Danish Playhouse, Glassalen and in Tivoli. Tickets are available soon!
Fifty years after he astonished the musical world with his initial recorded forays into free jazz, Ornette Coleman remains astounding. He has served as the foremost visionary of his genre, influencing generations of jazz innovators with his dazzling, cataclysmic and otherworldly forays into free-form jazz. Still creating vigorous and groundbreaking work, the 77-year-old Coleman was honoured in 2007 with a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award and the Pulitzer Prize for music for his first new album in a decade, the acclaimed Grammy nominated Sound Grammar.
Wayne Shorter Quartet & Imani Winds
He never met a rule he couldn’t break: Wayne Shorter pushes the limits of jazz anew, venturing into the realm of contemporary music. Aside from serving the passionate unpredictability of this legendary composer, the arrangements of the stunning Terra Incognita also fuse the sound of his quartet with the Imani Winds ensemble, to breathtaking effect. Book your passage on a musical journey into the unknown space where composition and improvisation become one.
With a series of terrific albums, Cassandra Wilson has established herself as one of the day’s great vocalists and, in branching out from jazz into blues and folk and pop, paved the way for genre-crossing stars including Norah Jones. While many jazz singers chase the ghosts of yesteryear revisiting the same vocal standards again and again, Cassandra Wilson has chosen a different path. She retains her fluid, smoky, and sometimes throaty phrasing, but paints with a more expansive palette.
Saxophone Summit w. Joe Lovano, Ravi Coltrane & Dave Liebman
Saxophone „battles” have traditionally inspired musicians to play their best. But more than just a cutting contest, Saxophone Summit is a multi-faceted musical equation greater than the sum of its parts. Formed in 1996 by Michael Brecker, Joe Lovano and Dave Liebman, the band almost stopped existing when Brecker passed away last year, but in the end Lovano and Liebman decided to ask Ravi Coltrane to join them – and luckily he accepted. On this occasion, Sax Summit will dive in to the music of Ravi’s legendary father, John Coltrane.
Brad Mehldau Trio
Jazz, art rock and classical all come to play in maverick pianist/composer Brad Mehldau’s music. From Radiohead to Mahler to original conceptual compositions, Mehldau mines the inner worlds of piano and jazz to a depth both exhilarating and mesmerizing. Whether performing with his now illustrious trio or with the likes of Pat Metheny and John Scofield, he’s famous for his eloquent style fusing improvisation with formal structure. At this year’s festival Brad Mehldau returns with compatriots Larry Grenadier on bass and Jeff Ballard on drums for an evening of heady, awe-inspiring jazz and playing that’s „simply brilliant”.
Angélique Kidjo – „Djin Djin”
In the course of her successful career Angélique Kidjo has spread her rhythmic Afro-funk fusion to the four corners of the globe and become almost as famous as her childhood idols, Miriam Makeba and Aretha Franklin. With her fun-loving personality, her on-stage charisma and her totally unique voice, Ms. Kidjo is certainly one of the most popular artists on the current world scene. A few months ago, she nabbed her first Grammy Award at 50th annual Grammy Awards ceremony. Produced by the legendary Tony Visconti, DJIN DJIN saw the Benin-born Angelique Kidjo partnering with such luminaries as Alicia Keys, Peter Gabriel, Carlos Santana, Josh Groban, Joss Stone, Ziggy Marley, and Branford Marsalis to create an album which is truly global in scope. In her acceptance speech, Kidjo dedicated her award to the „women of Darfur, the women who are fighting every day to give their kids an education.
David Murray Black Saint Quartet
David Murray has reunited his Black Saint Quartet, sans earthly departed pianist John Hicks, whose shoes are filled by the able Lafayette Gilchrist. The quartet’s 2007 album Sacred Ground is a fascinating and important new recording that grew from David Murray’s involvement in the acclaimed documentary film, Banished, directed by Marco Williams. Although it’s virtually unknown, more than a dozen counties in the U.S. violently expelled thousands of families between the Civil War and the Great Depression. The film explores not only these historical facts, but also the legacy of these events in the communities and for the descendants of the families.
Charles Lloyd Quartet
70-year-old saxophonist Charles Lloyd has played with some exceptional pianists in the course of his long career, starting with Phineas Newborn in his home town, with Joe Zawinul in the Cannonball Adderley group, and with Keith Jarrett, whom Lloyd introduced in his pioneering group of the 1960s. Subsequent Lloyd quartet pianists have included Michel Petrucciani, Bobo Stenson, Brad Mehldau, and Geri Allen. The latest incarnation of the Charles Lloyd Quartet includes the brilliant Jason Moran who finds his own, exciting way to play inside Lloyd’s musical concepts as can be heard on the quartet’s new (and brilliant) ECM release entitled „Rabo de Nube”.