ghent

Gent Jazz Festival 2011 line-up is complete

The line-up for the 10th edition of Gent Jazz Festival (July 7th – 17th, Bijloke) is complete, with bands such as Sonny Rollins, Daniel Lanois’ Black Dub feat. Trixie Whitley & Brian Blade, Return to Forever IV, Angus & Julia Stone, Absynthe Minded, Morcheeba, Al Di Meola World Sinfonia feat. Gonzalo Rubalcaba, Randy Brecker/Bill Evans Soulbop Band feat. Medeski, Martin & Wood, Michel Portal Quintet, Agnes Obel, Red Snapper, Dave Holland Quintet, Al Foster/George Mraz Quartet feat. Fred Hersch, Terence Blanchard Quintet and Nouvelle  Vague.

The following bands have already been announced: B.B. King, Gotan Project, Raphael Saadiq, Mavis Staples, Jef Neve Trio and Sing The Truth with Angelique Kidjo, Dianne Reeves & Lizz Wright.

The 10th edition of the Gent Jazz Festival will begin on Thursday July 7th with none other than Sonny Rollins as the Special Nights’ headliner. This jazz legend had been on the festival’s wish list for a very long time and the birthday edition is an excellent occasion. His concert is preceded by the Michel Portal Quintet. The Nathan Daems Quintet, opens the Special Night after having won Young Jazz Talent 2010, the youth contest held yearly on the festival’s fringes.

On Friday the 8th of July, Al Di Meola World Sinfonia, together with special guest Gonzalo Rubalcaba will perform, with Dave Holland Quintet and Al Foster/George Mraz Quartet feat. Fred Hersch. The day’s opener is a coaching project in co-operation with University College Conservatory Ghent called Quartet dal Cuore feat. Paolo Ghetti.

July 9th is the festival’s first Saturday and a Special Night as well. B.B. King, Mavis Staples and the trio of Steven De Bruyn, Tony Gyselinck & Roland will be present.

On Sunday July 10th, the festival’s first four days will be concluded by Return to Forever IV Hymn of the 7th Galaxy Tour (an excellent band with Chick Corea, Stanley Clarke, Lenny White, Jean-Luc Ponty and Frank Gambale). The Belgian Rêve D’ Éléphant Orchestra will open before Terence Blanchard Quintet and Randy Brecker/Bill Evans Soulbop Band with Medeski, Martin & Wood.

Thursday July 14th three jazz queens will line up with Sing The Truth: Angelique Kidjo, Dianne Reeves & Lizz Wright continue the legacies of Miriam Makeba, Abbey Lincoln and Odetta. Three current icons will pay tribute to the women of song from the last generation. They will be preceded by Jef Neve and his trio and Philip Catherine Plays Cole Porter.

Both revelations Agnes Obel and Agnus & Julia Stone are on stage Friday July 15th. This day will be supplemented by local band  Absynthe Minded. It’s a day dedicated to bands currently breaking through internationally and striving to meet high expectations in the future.

Gent Jazz Festival announces Gotan Project who are electro-tango masters and a retro-funk musician Raphael Saadiq on July 16th. Nouvelle Vague will be the first group to play on the initial day of the Gentse Feesten.

Daniel Lanois’ Black Dub feat. Trixie Whitley & Brian Blade will play on the closing day, July 17th. The festival organization looks forward to this concert after having cancelled Daniel Lanois’ Black Dub last year due to a motorcycle accident. But we are looking forward to vocalist Trixie Whitley as well. Last year her performance won hearts and minds with a special project. Later that day groups include: BackBack which is a local band, Red Snapper and Morcheeba with frontwoman Skye in the original line-up.

The music contest ‘Young Jazz Talent Ghent, an initiative in co-operation Duvel-Moortgat brewery will take place at the festival grounds’ entrance. Free entry every time right before the first concert on the main stage.

New!

Thanks to the co-operation with the city museums in Ghent it is now possible to get free access to one of the 9 museums in Ghent using your Gent Jazz Festival Ticket as an admission ticket. A nice extra for festival visitors. Up until the end of August visitors can be introduced free of charge to the permanent collections from De Wereld Van Kina, Design Museum, Huis Van Alijn, Kunsthal St.-Pietersabdij, MIAT, MSK Gent, Museum Dr. Guislain, SMAK and STAM.

The tickets will obviously remain valid as transportation ticket on De Lijn busses or trams. De Lijn will take you for free, safe and without parking concerns to Gent Jazz Festival and back!

The new online platform will become active on 30.03, the platform will inform festival enthusiasts thoroughly about the festival and about other information such as website, facebook, blog… In the coming weeks the website will be expanded with an archive containing past editions, blog messages, actions and cool extras. Moreover, written and photo reports will be published on this platform during the festival.

Info: www.gentjazz.com. Tickets: gentjazz.com or Fnac. Day Ticket early bird rate: 35 Euro – Special Night early bird rate: 42 Euro – July 15th: 25 Euro. Festival pass early bird rate: 212 Euro (limited number, early bird action up until April 30th). 3day pass early bird rate: 79 Euro (early bird action up until April 30th). The sales channels will add a 3 Euro reservation cost per ticket or pass. The prices for buying tickets on the spot is presale rate + 7 Euro.

THE SONGWRITER'S BEAT Tonight At Cornelia Street Cafe

Now in its 10th year, The Songwriter's Beat is New York's premiere performing songwriter series. Hosted and founded by singer-songwriter Valerie Ghent, four up-and-coming songwriters perform new material in a supportive and intimate atmosphere.

This month's Songwriter's Beat features Rebecca Hart, Valerie Ghent, Danny Ross and Randi Driscoll.

Every third Wednesday of the month, four songwriters of varying musical styles perform original songs and are encouraged to try out their newest material and arrangements. The series culminates in a week-long festival each July, featuring performers from throughout the years.

Founded in 2000, The Songwriter's Beat has presented over 290 songwriters from the Tri-State area as well as visiting songwriters from other parts of the United States, Canada, France, the UK, Ireland, Australia, South Africa, Cuba and Japan.

The Songwriter's Beat is honored to receive support from The ASCAP Foundation.

http://www.songwritersbeat.com

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CORNELIA STREET CAFÉ
29 Cornelia Street, NYC, New York    212-989-9319
http://www.corneliastreetcafe.com

Ornette Coleman, Kruder & Dorfmeister & Gilberto Gil at Gent Jazz Festival

The Gent Jazz Festival (July7-July18) announces more names for the 2010 edition with Ornette Coleman, Pat Metheny Group, Gilberto Gil, Toots Thielemans, Kruder & Dorfmeister, Mariza, Kurt Elling, The Cinematic Orchestra en Stanley Clarke feat. Hiromi.

Also Christian Mendoza Group, Greg Houben Trio, Pierre Vaiana & Salvatore Bonafede feat. Manolo Cabras, Jungle Boldie will perform at the festival. Earlier the festival had already announced names like Norah Jones, Daniel Lanois Black Dub and Chick Corea Freedom Band.  Chronological survey of the program enclosed

Thursday July 8 the SABAM Jazz Awards will be presented at the Gent Jazz Festival. The winner in the category Confirmed Artist receives 10.000 Euro. In the category Young Talent, in collaboration with Jeugd & Muziek the winner will receive 5.000 Euro. The intention of this sum is to be used as a financial support for musical projects or to offer a push forward for the expansion of a future career of the musician. Sabam also hands out the Muse of Sabam. This is an additional award that is given to a Belgian jazz personality for his reputation and/or merits or because the artist has taken some successful actions to support the jazz scene.

Also this year the Gent Jazz Festival will organize jam sessions in the evening in collaboration with NH Hoteles. These jam sessions will take place each festival day in the medieval Trova basement of the NH Hotel Gent Belfort and begin at 23h30.  Entrance for free.

The Music competition ‘Young Jazz talent’, an initiative in collaboration with brewery Duvel-Moortgat will take place at the entrance of the Bijloke during the GJF period. The same selected groups will also perform a second time during the Ghent Festivities (July17-July 26).

Tickets cost 29 euros per evening (excl. booking costs), except for those of July 7 (concert day with Norah Jones) which cost 42 euros (excl. booking costs). A Three-Day Pass costs 73 euros (excl. booking costs). Tickets are available as of today. Tickets can be booked via www.gentjazz.com, or at FNAC. Just as last year, the last festival weekend coincides with the opening weekend of the Ghent Festivities.

Jazz & Sounds Festival | Gent, Belgium

Beginning in 2010, Gent Jazz Festival, De Bijloke Music Centre, Vooruit Arts Centre, University College Ghent - Faculty of Music and the University College Ghent - Faculty of Fine Arts (KASK) will work together in the annual initiative, the Jazz & Sounds Festival. This new festival will focus on the versatility of contemporary music. The first edition takes place from March 22 - 28, 2010.

Improvisation and creation are important mainstays of the Jazz & Sounds Festival combining the interaction from and to jazz, contemporary, classical, alternative rock, electronic music, improvised music, non-western music and more. The festival offers not a linear but an organic whole of concerts each day, where several concerts and performances can coincide. Visitors will have to make choices within the programme or will be guided by the surprise of the moment.

The festival starts March 22 in the University College Ghent – Faculty of Music with Impressions of a Blue Kind, a prestigious project spotlighting students from the faculties of music of Ghent, Tilburg and Maastricht. The next day, March 23, a presentation by Eddy Van Oosthuyse is planned in the University College Ghent – Faculty of Music with soloists from the Brussels Philharmonic showcasing the role of contemporary clarinet in chamber music.

From then on the Jazz & Sounds Festival moves to Arts Centre Vooruit March 25 and 26. The first day starts with a documentary about Han Bennink. The same day Jazz & Sounds delivers a jazz and literature project by trio Ben Sluijs/Jules Deelder/Remco Campert and concerts featuring saxophone player Colin Stetson and the duo of Erik Truffaz/Malcolm Braff. The festival concludes this first day by presenting Hairy Bones with among others Peter Brötzmann and Toshinoro Kondo.

Friday March 26 in Arts Centre Vooruit finds the duo Eric Thielemans/Josse De Pauw in performance, double bass player Joëlle Léandre and the premiere of Flat Earth Society’s new venture with John Watts. Elliott Sharp’s Carbon concludes the Jazz & Sounds Festival in Arts Centre Vooruit.

March 27 and 28 the festival is hosted by Music Centre De Bijloke. Saturday starts with Cage Aria by Françoise Vanhecke. Afterwards, visitors can choose between a documentary on Charlie Haden and a creation by Sophie Allour and Jozef Dumoulin together with drummer Dré Pallemaerts. This project was crafted especially for the Jazz & Sounds Festival in collaboration with the Tourcoing Jazz Festival.

Later that day on the programme, there is Dutch cello player Ernst Reijseger, Spectra with work by Mantovani and Alexandros Markeas, a project by El Negocito Records and Foundation Logos, Fred Van Hove together with Barry Guy and Wilbert de Joode, and a presentation by the students of the University College Ghent – Faculty of Music on Julius Eastman conducted by Alexandros Markeas. Ending this festival day is an improvisation workshop by Joëlle Léandre with students of the University College Ghent – Faculty of Music and Miroslav Vitous with his Remembering Weather Report.

Sunday March 28, is the last day of Jazz & Sounds and it starts with a concert by Ellery Eskelin and his group. Following this, the students of the University College Ghent, Faculty of Music play John Cage’s Songbooks and attendees can view a documentary on photographer Leonard Herman. Continuing the programme  on  this last day, there is trombone player Wolter Wierbos, a project by El Negocito Records in collaboration with Foundation Logos, and the duo of Ben Sluijs/Tom Van Bauwel exploring the writings of Paul Van Ostaijen. Nadar, Arsis4, Peter Jacquemyn and Jan Pillaert will interpret work by Daan Janssens and Stefan Prins.  Music by Rik De Geyter performing clarinet artistry for Stockhausen’s ‘Little Harlequin’ will be also be presented. Enescu re-Imagined by Lucian Ban & John Hébert is the closing act for the first edition of the Jazz & Sounds Festival. Pianist  Lucian Ban revised the musical legacy of Romanian composer George Enesco and created a bold contemporary jazz composition. Ban gathered an impressive group of musicians from the New York jazz scene around him for this project: among others featured are John Hébert, Nasheet Waits, Tony Malaby, Mat Maneri and Ralph Alessi.

On March 22 the University College Ghent – Faculty of Music organises an Open Lab on artistic research in Music Centre De Bijloke. March 26, a panel discussion on the same subject is organised in the Bijloke. Both activities are free and were organised in collaboration with IPEM-UGent, Foundation Logos and Ghent University Association.

Students and teachers of the University College Ghent – Faculty of Fine Arts (KASK) will participate as well in this first edition. Different departments of the faculty helped to create a visual festival identity and installations which serve as communicative machines were created. The Media Art Department confronts visitors to the festival with installations in which sounds, rhythm and timbre call the tune.

Eddie Kowalczyk in Handelsbeurs Ghent

One summer evening in 2009, another wonderful musical experience: Eddie Kowalczyk (lead singer of Live) at Handelsbeurs – Ghent (Belgium).

 

To our surprise it was a seated concert, but once the concert started, we knew why. It accentuated the nice, intimate atmosphere created by the music. The Handelsbeurs, situated in the city centre, is an ideal location for that kind of concerts as well. It is more than just a music hall. It is a monument with a large history. In the 16th century, even young Mozart performed here!

 

Eddie, or should we call him M. Kowalczyk, played songs such as I Alone, Selling The Drama, Lightning Crashes (dedicated to Michael Jackson), The Dolphins Cry, Heaven, Zion (a brand new song), Blowin In The Wind (Bob Dylan), They Stood Up For Love, and many more. If you ever have a chance to go and see him, don’t doubt! You find his tour dates on www.eddieklive.com

 

Support group that night was She No Go, a local duo (Does and Bart) you might know from the band Thou. For this concert they only used a Spanish guitar, a Casio keyboard and their beautiful voices.

Ghent Belgium

In this column I want to talk to you about Ghent. Ghent is the capital of the province East-Flanders in Belgium, a small country in Europe, and has about 225 000 inhabitants.

My main purpose is to give you a first impression of the city I live in since a couple of years. For this, I'll take you with me to some places that made a big impression on me … until now. Keep in mind this will not be a complete tour to all places of interest in the city! This wouldn't be possible anyway as there is so much to see and to do. Shall we leave?

Can I ask you to close your eyes? We will walk to the place from where you get the most impressive view of the city: the Saint-Michael' bridge. Now we are standing on top of this bridge, open your eyes. Do you like the view? The towers you see in front of you are the three most famous towers of the city: Saint-Nicholas' church, the Belfry, and the Saint-Bavo's cathedral. In the later, the famous painting "The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb" (Jan Van Eyck, 1432) is hanging, which is considered as a high point in the 15th century Flemish art. Now I want to draw your attention on the area under the bridge. Here the Graslei and Korenlei are situated. The numerous waterways passing through the inner city all flow towards the former port at the Graslei. The elegant facades of the Graslei and Korenlei represent different architectural styles. Each facade reflects a period of history remembering the visitor of the spirit of enterprise and the busy commercial activities of the old guilds. During sunny days, people are gathered at the waterside to talk, read, make music, have a drink etc. This is a fantastic area to overlook the day. Maybe you can relax here tonight before going to bed.

As regards me, the most impressive building in town is the Castle of Counts (Gravensteen), a medieval castle that was built in 1180 by Philip of Alsace, count of Flanders. Originally, until the 14th century, the castle had a military role (protecting the citizens). Afterwards, it has been used for a variety of purposes: mint, court, jail and cotton mill. The castle contains a crypt and a dungeon and also houses, court museum, and a collection of historical weapons and armors. Enter into the medieval times and discover it all during your self-guided tour! Don't forget to walk along the castle's encircling wall, from where you have a beautiful view over the city.

Lets continue our sightseeing in the "Patershol". The "Patershol" is a tight web of brick terraced houses dating from the seventeenth century. It is really nice to walk in these small streets, with a lot of good restaurants. Maybe we can come back here to have dinner later on!

At the other sight of town, at the "Sint-Pietersplein", excavations are carried out at the moment. Once a week, an archeologist gives detailed, updated information about these excavations (for free), which makes it even more interesting. While there, we should take advantage of the opportunity to visit the nature museum as well. Concerning me, it is worth the walk as you can discover other beautiful places in town in the meantime as well. Shall we have a look?

It was worth the effort wasn't it? Do you need to go away from the commotion in the streets for a while? Well, in that case I'll take you to the "Blaarmeersen", a recreation park with nice promenade walks, lawns where you can relax and read a book, playgrounds for the children, a big lake where you can surf, swim, kayak, etc. In other words, this is the perfect spot to relax and take it easy.

For the nature lovers, the "Bourgoyen-Ossemeersen" is a good alternative, a nature reserve where you can make nice walks, in complete silence. Binoculars are a must, so those who have them with them, don't forget to use them!

Ok, lets get back to the city center and have dinner in one of the restaurants I showed you earlier today (Patershol). For those who want to explore the nightlife, nightclubs and cafés are spread all over town. Don't forget, you are in Belgium, the European country known for its beers. But, always think about the day after…!

If you think one night of partying is not enough, you should come back in July as the Ghent Festivities (Gentse Feesten) take place then. For ten days, the whole city is turned upside down. Partygoers, culture lovers, and even children come into theirs own for sure. There are several performances on a number of podia and bars in town, street theatre, kermis, etc. A great time for young and old!

With this tip, I'll leave you to it. Remember there is a lot more to see than the places I showed you! Enjoy the rest of your stay, and maybe we'll meet again. See you!