For all the Jazz & Blues enthusiasts around the Bay Area, the San Jose Jazz Festival is the type of experience you wouldn’t want to miss. It’s one of the biggest music festivals around us. The dates this summer are August 12th, 13th and 14th.
It’s a 3 day festival in downtown San Jose, with a total of 12 stages and over 120 performances. A huge variety of styles, it encompasses every taste: Jazz, Blues, Latin, Salsa, R&B, Funk, New Orleans, Jazz Beyond – and more!
Tickets are still for sale online, and we’re going to be covering days 13 and 14! Jazz & Blues overdose, here we go:
5. Discovering New Artists
With a festival this big, even for the biggest Jazz & Blues fans, you can be sure you’re going to discover something new. Going to festivals, in general, can be quite a learning experience! It’s time to discover new bands, watch your favorite artists, see some beautiful improvisation and even meet people with similar musical taste!
4. Sérgio Mendes & Brasil
With the Olympics happening in Brazil, for those of us who didn’t have a chance to go, at least we can enjoy some fantastic Brazilian music!
Sérgio Mendes is one of the most important influences in Brazilian music. He plays the beautiful genre of Bossa Nova: think about the subtle influence of Samba, Brazil’s most popular music genre, with a fusion of Jazz and Funk.
- Funny fact: You’ve probably heard Black Eyed Peas’ hit, “Mas Que Nada”. That is actually Sérgio Mendes’ hit, which he re-recorded again in 2006, in a collaboration with Black Eyed Peas.
3. Cécile McLorin Salvant & The Aaron Diehl Trio
She was the winner of the First Prize in the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition in 2010. Should I go on? I bet that just knowing that, sparks your curiosity to see her performing live, doesn’t it? It certainly sparks mine!
Needless to say, she’s extremely talented and has a voice that suits Jazz in a way that is almost offensive – it’s like the music genre and her voice were made for one another! Also, being the daughter of a Haitian father and a French mother, Cécile has some songs in French, such as “Le Front Cache Sur Tes Genoux.”
Goapele is a R&B and Soul singer and songwriter from the Bay Area, more specifically, Oakland. She’s released a total of 5 studio albums, “Closer” (2001), “Even Closer” (2002), “Change It All” (2005), “Break of Dawn” (2011), “Strong As Glass” (2014) and her music touches base on political and social problems. The delicate activism and social consciousness expressed in her lyrics make her music even more endearing.
1. José James
Think about a mixture of Modern Jazz and Hip Hop. José James, a vocalist based in NYC, claimed that Billie Holiday is the “mother of his career.” His music style is so versatile and he explores so many different influences, from Nirvana and Radiohead, to Frank Ocean and James Blake, that it’s even hard to imagine how he’s able to do such a thing, but everything makes sense when we get to hear his music.