Yorkshire Times
Voice of the North
Graham Clark
Features Writer
10:59 AM 5th July 2020

All That Jazz - Montreux Jazz Festival Debut Classic Performances On Line

The festival scene across Europe has been decimated with the current pandemic. From the Nice Jazz Festival to the North Sea Jazz Festival all the festivals have been cancelled.

This year was due to be the 54th edition of the Montreux Jazz Festival, taking place on the Lake Geneva shoreline in Switzerland. Founded in 1964 by Claude Nobs, the festival is now one of the oldest and most renowned music festivals, attracting thousands of people to see the most famous and biggest emerging names in music.

Montreux Jazz Festival have announced the launch of ‘Summer Of Music’, to mark the 54th edition of the annual festival in Montreux, Switzerland. From Friday 03 to Sunday 18 July, when the Montreux Jazz Festival was due to take place, Montreux will be bringing the magic of the festival alive to viewers at home with rare and never before seen performances streamed exclusively via YouTube. ‘Summer Of Music’ will showcase iconic Montreux Jazz Festival performances from some of the world’s most legendary artists, including Nina Simone, Etta James and Carlos Santana.

Through a partnership between Eagle Rock and the festival’s media subsidiary Montreux Media Ventures, Montreux Jazz Festival will stream one performance a day across the 16 days, including world premieres from legends including John Lee Hooker (1983) and Charles Bradley (2016), bringing together some of the festival’s biggest moments. For many, it will be the first time seeing these rare performances from Montreux’s archive, allowing viewers to dive into the rich history of the festival and experience the magic at home.

Since its inception, Montreux has been shaped by the rich culture of black artists, such as Nina Simone, Marvin Gaye and James Brown, who have all taken to the stage at Montreux. The festival owes so much of its success to black artists, it has partnered with the National Museum of African American Music, to show its support and recognise the contribution of black musicians.

Viewers on line will be able to make donations to the museum while enjoying the performances throughout the entirety of the festival. MMV and Eagle Rock will also be donating all ad revenue generated from the Summer Of Music virtual festival to the NMAAM. NMAAM is set to open in the fall of 2020 in Nashville, TN. When it opens it will be a world-class facility dedicated to celebrating, preserving, and educating visitors on the central role African Americans have played in shaping and creating American music and culture. NMAAM will integrate history and interactive technology to share the untold stories of more than 50 genres and sub-genres of music. It will be an unparalleled institution, unconfined by record label, genre or recording artist, that tells a unique narrative through the lens of Black music.

Here is the list of classic performances that can be viewed online on the date given:

Suzanne Vega (2004) — Monday 6 July
Rory Gallagher (1979) — Tuesday 7 July
Charles Mingus (1975) — Wednesday 8 July
Carlos Santana Plays the Blues (2004) — Thursday 9 July
Bang Bang Romeo (2019) — world premiere — Friday 10 July
Angelique Kidjo and Friends (2016) — world premiere— Saturday 11 July
Nina Simone (1976) — Sunday 12 July
Deep Purple Live with Orchestra (2011) — Monday 13 July
Etta James (1993) — Tuesday 14 July
BB King (1993) — Wednesday 15 July
Kenny Wayne Shepherd (2019) — world premiere — Thursday 16 July
Tom Misch (2019) — world premiere — Friday 17 July
Rag'n'Bone Man (2019) - world premiere - Saturday 18 July
Marvin Gaye (1980) — Saturday 18 July