Crescent-Jazz Festivals
The World’s Greatest Jazz Festivals

The World’s Greatest Jazz Festivals

How many of you have attended a jazz festival and not being nostalgic about it? Well, we understand that jazz festivals are immensely popular events for its universal appeal, fun, and enjoyment. This is why people who have attended a jazz festival want more. Even some of them are constantly searching for upcoming jazz festivals to make sure their appetite for experiencing the diverse culture is met.

So, in this article, we are going to talk about the world’s greatest jazz festivals to soothe your anxiety for wanting more. Each of this festival will open up a new horizon for you as you will understand each host city offers its unique local flavor with these events. Let’s move further and explore the best jazz festivals in the world.

1. New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival (New Orleans, Louisiana, USA)

The World's Greatest Jazz FestivalsThe very first jazz festival on our list is the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival. Dubbed as the Jazz Fest, this event started its journey in 1970. The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival is a seven-day cultural fest, which celebrates the musical heritage of New Orleans.

Along with jazz music, the festival offers discerning music genres such as Gospel, Cajun, Blues, R&B, Folk, Latin, Rock, County Music, Rap, and Bluegrass. With various musical acts, performing every day on 12 different stages, the festival provides something for everyone. Not to mention, you will have an abundance of food vendors, offering local cuisines like jambalaya, beignets, gumbo, etc. All in all, the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival will make your seven-day stay truly remarkable.

2. Montréal International Jazz Festival, Quebec, Canada

The World's Greatest Jazz FestivalsThe Montréal International Jazz Festival is hosted in Quebec, Canada. Since its inception in 1980, this festival has grown in stature and popularity. In 2004, this festival was regarded as the biggest jazz festival in the world. On that year, the festival included more than 700 concerts, performed by 3,000 musicians. In fact, the festival entertained millions of people for a 10-day period.

What’s more, some of the big names such as Ella Fitzgerald, Ray Charles, and Aretha Franklin have performed in this jazz festival. The most amazing fact is almost all of the celebrations are free of cost. For this reason, each Montréal International Jazz Festival draws more than two million jazz enthusiasts as some of the best music performances are seen in various outdoor and indoor concert halls like the P.D.A. (Place des Arts).

3. Copenhagen Jazz Festival (Copenhagen, Denmark)

The World's Greatest Jazz FestivalsIf you love jazz, then you must have heard that Copenhagen is the hub for European Jazz. In every summer, Copenhagen hosts the annual Copenhagen Jazz Festival, which spans for a 10-day period. Different renowned musicians from around the world come and perform in the Copenhagen’s Opera House, Royal Theatre, and cafes and small clubs.

If it is not enough, the festival-goers can enjoy stunning music on the harbor front while swimming in the Danish sea. Even the kids love this festival as it offers special kids program like painting workshop, singing competition, circus, and many more things. In truth, Copenhagen Jazz Festival is more than just a music fest with its distinct musical appeal and famed sightseeing places.

4. Le Festival de Jazz de Montreux, (Montreux, Switzerland)

The World's Greatest Jazz FestivalsOne of the iconic jazz festivals of all time, Le Festival de Jazz de Montreux first came to life in 1967. Claude Nobs, a passionate jazz lover, organized the first ever festival on Lake Geneva’s shoreline in Switzerland. Up until now, many world-famous musicians such as Duke Ellington, Larry Coryell, Sonny Rollins, Ray Charles, and Oscar Peterson have graced and performed in this festival.

‘Deep Purple,’ an English rock band formed in Hertford in 1968 write their famous hit song ‘Smoke on the Water’ and they were inspired by this event. Nowadays, Le Festival de Jazz de Montreux hosts more than 200,000 people each year and the event is hosted in June for up to two weeks.

5. Monterey Jazz Festival (San Francisco, CA)

The World's Greatest Jazz FestivalsMonterey Jazz Festival is the longest-running jazz festival in North America, which is held in Monterey CA for a three-day period. Started in 1958, the festival is held on the grounds of California’s Monterey Fairgrounds. With three outdoor and four indoor stages, which are spread over 20-acre of Oak studded grounds, the festival offers 78 events on three consecutive nights (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday). Likewise Copenhagen Jazz Festival, this festival is also more than just a jazz festival as it hosts many education programs with workshops, exhibitions, and panel discussions on different topics.

Bottom Line

It doesn’t matter which festival you are attending, if you love music and want to experience a new culture, then each of the above festivals will amaze you in different ways. So, tell us what we have missed by sharing your comments below.

Reykjavik Jazz Festival

Reykjavik Jazz Festival

Jazz music is one of the coolest music genres of all time with millions of music aficionados love it wholeheartedly. With that being said, Reykjavik jazz festival is one particular music fest that draws around thousands of people from around the world. With various music artists from across the globe, this music fest is held in Old Town of Reykjavik.

If you combine the Iceland’s immaculate nature and hot nightlife with soulful jazz music, Reykjavik jazz festival would surely make your life inspiring and dynamic. Not to mention the opportunity of experiencing the mysterious Blue Lagoon or the beautiful black sandy beaches will definitely soothe your inner thirst for nature and beauty.

So, in this article, we are going to take to the most recent Reykjavik jazz festival, which took place in August 2017. Put your sleeves up and let’s find out how the music fest unfolded its magnificence among the jazz lovers.

When was the Reykjavik jazz festival held?

The Reykjavik jazz festival was held from 9th to 13th August 2017.

Reykjavik Jazz FestivalWhat’s the specialty of Reykjavik jazz festival?

This jazz festival is a prestigious and international jazz event, hosting various music and fine arts performances from world-class artists. From contemporary jazz to Latin jazz, avant-garde, gospel and big bands, the jazz festival features many renowned music genres. Additionally, Iceland’s local and internationally acclaimed jazz musicians have performed on this music fest. Not to mention, the entire jazz festival is hosted in the small coastal town, which is against the backdrop of magnificent mountains, making it an enticing event for thousands of music-goers.

Which artists performed in Reykjavik jazz festival?

As we have pointed out that many world-leading and local jazz musicians have performed in this music fest, artists such as Fred Hersch Trio, Ole Morten Vågan, Vincent Peirani & Emile Parisien Sigurður Flosason & Lars Jansson, Emile Parisien, Kvartett Ólafs Jónssonar, Agnar Már Magnússon tríó, and Volcano Bjorn.

Who organized the Reykjavik jazz festival?

Reykjavik jazz festival was organized by the FIH Jazz Department, which was assisted by FIH cultural fund, the State Fund for Music, and the City Of Reykjavik.

What were the other attractions of Reykjavik jazz festival?

Reykjavik Jazz FestivalAside from jazz music, there were plenty of attractions, which entertained the people. Iceland is renowned for its natural beauties with different awe-inspiring places. Besides, the gourmet foods such as the organic lamb and seafood draw many admirers from around the world. So, people who went to the festival were able to enjoy these things as well. Not to mention the geothermal waters of the mysterious blue lagoon and legendary surfing spots would have made many people nostalgic.

Bottom Line

The bottom line is Reykjavik jazz festival is all about representing the best Icelandic music with a unique culture. In fact, this festival is one of the best ways to impost Iceland as a magnificent country with tradition, culture, and history. So, stay tuned for next year’s jazz festival and share your thoughts about the Reykjavik jazz festival with your comments.

Top 10 Most Famous French Jazz Singers of All Time

Top 10 Most Famous French Jazz Singers of All Time

If you are looking for the best and the most famous French jazz singers of all time, then you have come to the right place. From generations to generations, France has always produced some of the legendary artists, music composers, and jazz singers. So, in this article, we have compiled the list of the top 10 most famous French jazz singers of all time. Let’s scroll down to keep reading and know which jazz singers were included on our list.

Fred Adison

Top 10 Most Famous French Jazz Singers of All TimeFred Adison or Albert Lapeyrère was a renowned French jazz and light musician. He was also a drummer and bandleader who fell in love with jazz music at an early age. He created his first band with his friends, which was based in 1931. They also shot films for Charlie Chaplin. Fred joined Cirque Pinder in 1925 and conduct the circus orchestra until 1962. His notable works include Luis Mariano and Gloria Lasso. He also recorded various albums as well.

Aimé Barelli

Top 10 Most Famous French Jazz Singers of All TimeAimé Barelli was a famous jazz musician who had worked with some legendary musicians such as Fred Adison, Raymond Legrand, Maceo Jefferson, Raymond Wraskoff, and Hubert Rostaing. Apart from being a jazz musician, Aimé Barelli was a trumpeter and a vocalist who led his own band from 1943. He and his band performed with Dizzy Gillespie in 1948. He also worked with Charlie Parker and Sidney Bechet in the late 1940s as well.

Serge Gainsbourg

Top 10 Most Famous French Jazz Singers of All TimeSerge Gainsbourg, an iconic figure in the French music industry. He was a multitalented person who was known as a jazz musician, film composer, poet, painter, writer, actor, and director. He was a widely popular musician who delivered challenging yet melodious music. He had likings for different genres of music including jazz, world, mambo, pop, rock and roll, reggae, disco, progressive rock, new wave, chanson, and funk. Over a long and illustrious career, he had written more than 550 songs.

Jocelyne Jocya

Top 10 Most Famous French Jazz Singers of All TimeJocelyne Jocya was French jazz singer who sold millions of records from 1958 to 1980. She was also a songwriter who had performed in some of the legendary music halls. Jocelyne Jocya founded the Federation for the Declaration of the Rights of Children in 1988. Her most notable work was the rendition of ‘Bon Voyage.’

Josette Daydé

Top 10 Most Famous French Jazz Singers of All TimeJosette Daydé was a versatile person who was a jazz singer, actress, and chansonnière. She first appeared as a singer on the operettas ‘Au soleil de Marseille.’ Her most popular recording was the ‘Le Rythme Américain’ (The American Rhythm), which was recorded in 1945.

Anne Ducros

Top 10 Most Famous French Jazz Singers of All TimeAnne Ducros is a French jazz singer who studied classical music from an early age. In 1986, she created her own jazz band and started touring from 1990. She worked with famous musicians including Kenny Barron, Jacky Terrasson, and Chick Corea. Anne Ducros started teaching vocal jazz from 1992 in Paris. She also worked as a mentor in various workshops and music classes around the world. Additionally, she was a vocal coach for the TV program Star Academy in 2008.

Liane Foly

Top 10 Most Famous French Jazz Singers of All TimeLiane Foly is a world famous French jazz singer who happens to be an actress, impressionist, and presenter. In 1987, she arrived in Paris and Fabrice Nataf (artistic director and patron of Virgin France) launched her music career. Next year, she released her first-ever album, The Man I Love, which made it to the top 50 album of the year.

François Guin

Top 10 Most Famous French Jazz Singers of All TimeFrançois Guin is a musical specialist who excelled in violin, trombone, trumpet, and flute. However, he was known as a jazz musician and bandleader. He had worked with iconic musicians including Marc Laferrière, Christian Chevallier, Daniel Janin, Jacques Hélian, Duke Ellington, Michel Legrand, and Gerry Mulligan. He also played with Claude Bolling and Bill Coleman. He started his own band – Four Bones in 1967. Since then, he had tasted musical success until the 1990s.

Elisabeth Kontomanou

Top 10 Most Famous French Jazz Singers of All TimeElisabeth Kontomanou is a French jazz singer and composer who has delivered famous albums. She has lived in America and Sweden where she covers jazz songs in English. In 1986, she created her own jazz quartet – ‘Conversion.’ It won the La Défense Jazz Festival competition. She released the album – Brewin ‘the Blues in 2008. The fans and critics praised her work. She also appeared in 2013’s Tan Jazz Festival. She won the Vocal Jazz Award’ in 2006.

Alain Mion

Top 10 Most Famous French Jazz Singers of All TimeAlain Mion is a French jazz singer, composer, and a pianist. He was influenced by the work of Bobby Timmons, Les McCann, and Ray Charles. He was famous for his versatility as he could able to mix different styles of jazz and soul jazz. In 1974, he created the iconic jazz-funk group Cortex. In 1982, he started working under his own name and released several albums including the ‘Troupeau Bleu’ and ‘Volume 2’ (with Cortex) and ‘Pheno-Men’ under his own name.

Bottom Line

The bottom line is France has always produced many legendary jazz singers and our list just includes the very best singers of all time. So, if you think we have missed any notable jazz singers, comment below and share your thoughts with us!

History of French Jazz

History of French Jazz

In 1948, the first-ever jazz festival in France took place in the city of Nice, but if you want to know about its history, you have to go beyond that. So, in this article, we are going to talk about the history of French jazz and explain how the cultural landscape of France became synonymous with jazz.

The inception of Jazz music in France

History of French JazzInitially, jazz music came to France with African-American soldiers. During the World War I, they were stationed in France. However, in the early 1920s, jazz music took off to a flying start as F Scott Fitzgerald labeled the 1920s as the jazz age. After the World War I, French and US people were left with traumatic experience but this is when jazz music gave them life with its soothing and lively sound, becoming a perfect antidote to their sufferings. In fact, jazz music was a definitive source of purging the horrible memories of World War I.

French Riviera in the 1920s and the Jazz music

During the 1920s, France had a flamboyant time when people find it difficult to come to terms with World War I. As we have said, jazz music helped people to forget the horrific memories, many people from around the world would come to France, especially the Russian and American artists, musicians, and writers. They would head to straight to Paris which is famous for its liberal way of life. In fact, Paris was a destination for all kinds of people who want to party and enjoy the natural climate and beautiful sceneries. With the influx of these artists, the French Riviera, especially Nice, Juan-les-Pins, and its neighboring cities had become a place to live a carefree life with jazz music.

Now, in 1926, F Scott Fitzgerald had published The Great Gatsby and he had arrived in Juan-les-Pins. He instantly hired the best jazz musicians and started to live in Villa St Louis (now the Hotel Belles Rives). The local people had observed that along with Fitzgerald, those American and Russian artists had thrown parties with jazz music. Those parties tend to last until sunrise with people enjoying the enticing and peaceful sound of jazz music. However, all of these would take a blow with the Great Depression in the 1930s. The Americans would return to their home but the jazz music in France would survive this tough time

History of French JazzFrench Riviera during World War II and the evolution of Jazz music
The jazz music in France would continue its trend post-1930s, especially through an organization, named – The Hot Club. This club was founded by the Parisian students who continued to promote jazz to the French people. Within a short space of time, this club would become a symbol of jazz music, drawing top talents from all over the France. Even the club would bring American jazz musicians onboard with Louis Armstrong became the Honorary President of the Club.

When the World War II hit the world to its bottom, jazz music became more intertwined with the French culture. People viewed the jazz music as some sort of resistance to Nazi movement. Various jazz concerts were held to show support to the World War II victims, ultimately becoming a source of a rebel to the illicit political regime of Hitler. The Hot Club would then worked hard to make jazz music ‘Frenchify’ and make it a symbol of peace and hope in the eyes of French people.

The very first International Jazz Festival in 1948

When the World War II was finished, jazz music was fully established in France. And in 1948, Nice put the jazz music on the Riviera map. Louis Armstrong along with his all starts band came to Nice to perform at the first ever Nice International Jazz Festival. On that festival, renowned jazz musicians such as Ella Fitzgerald, Dizzy Gillespie, and Miles Davis had rocked the world with their amazing performances.

In this way, jazz music was born and established its trend in France. Along with the Nice International Jazz Festival, another jazz festival would make its way into the French culture, which is known as the Jazz à Juan Festival. This festival was first held in 1960, hosting numerous global jazz musicians.

From that time onward, these two jazz festivals have entertained millions of people. The Nice festival starts things off in July and the Jazz à Juan Festival cap the month of July in a stylistic manner.

Ten of the Best Summer Jazz Festivals In France

Ten of the Best Summer Jazz Festivals In France

France has a long history of jazz which began after the First World War in 1917 when black musicians or U.S. soldiers were stationed in France. Since then many iconic jazz musicians have come to France and conquered millions of heart with their soulful and melodious play. Not to mention, from that France has been hosting several jazz music festivals across its cities including in Paris, French Rivera, and many others. So, in this article, we have come up with the 10 best summer jazz festivals in France. Let’s move forward to know more about them.

Festival Jazz & Musique Improvisée

Ten of the Best Summer Jazz Festivals In FranceThe festival on our list is the Festival Jazz & Musique Improvisée – Franche-Comté, which is hosted in the eastern France. The main focus of this music fest is improvisation where virtuoso musicians such as the Rasul Siddik or Nguyen Duyen Thin have participated. Most of the concerts are held in the regional capital of Besançon where you will see The Théâtre Musical and CinémaKursaal. The music festival starts from 12th June and ends on 27th June in every year.

Django Reinhardt Festival

Ten of the Best Summer Jazz Festivals In FranceEvery year in central Paris, various jazz festivals are hosted, but the most notable one is Django Reinhardt Festival. This event is held on an island in the midst of the Seine at Samois, which is beside the Fontainebleau forest (located 60 kilometer southeast of the capital). Each year, the festival is held from 25-28 June.

Vienne Jazz Festival

Ten of the Best Summer Jazz Festivals In FranceVienne Jazz Festival delivers a wide range of music genres and offers fusions of jazz musicians with other notable singers like the YoussouN’Dour, Randy Crawford, and France’s rapper-extraordinaire, MC Solaar. The concerts are held at the Roman Theatre where upcoming musicians can sign-up for workshops at the Vienne’s Académie du Jazz. The jazz festival starts on 27th June and ends on 10th July.


Ten of the Best Summer Jazz Festivals In FranceThe fourth jazz festival on our list is the Chartrestivales which is a one-week long jazz fest. The concerts take place in the covered market, near the gothic Notre-Dame cathedral. For this reason, even if there is rain, the concerts won’t stop. The Chartrestivales begins from 29th June and ends on 4th July.

Jazz à Luz

Ten of the Best Summer Jazz Festivals In FranceJazz à Luz jazz festival is a unique event which is hosted in the village of Pyrenees national park. The national park is 30 kilometer south of Lourdes and every year, the music fest hosts some of the best musicians including from rap, jazz, beatbox, etc. The event starts from 10th July and ends on 13th July.

Jazz in Marciac

Ten of the Best Summer Jazz Festivals In FranceJazz in Marciac is a small yet the most famous jazz music fest where thousands of jazz lovers gather every year. The festival started as a local event 30 years ago but it became a huge hit among the locals and international tourists. The village in which the event is held is in between the Pau and Auch. The timeframe for the event is from 31 July to 16 August.

Jazz à Juan

Ten of the Best Summer Jazz Festivals In FranceJazz à Juan is hosted in the French Rivera where French jazz music got it a turnaround. The festival is associated with many of the iconic jazz musicians including Juan-les-Pins and Sidney Bechet. During this year’s festival, Sidney Bechet Memory All-Stars along with the Bob Wilber songs were featured. The concert stage is held up in a pine-scented beach-side park. The timeline for this festival is from 11 July to 19 July.

Megève Jazz Contest

Ten of the Best Summer Jazz Festivals In FranceEach year, jazz lovers from around the world flock together in the Megève Resort. This alpine resort hosts the annual Megève Jazz Contest where various jazz musicians participate. All concerts and the contest is hosted on outdoor venues. In truth, this event is a remarkable music fest, which starts from 12 July and ends on 14 July.

Souillacen Jazz

Ten of the Best Summer Jazz Festivals In FranceSouillacen Jazz is a multifaceted jazz festival, which is hosted in the Grottes de Lacave (southwest region of France and close to the Rocamadour). After that, the event would take place in the town of Dordogne. Additionally, the jazz event is famous for hosting talented jazz artists such as the MédéricCollignon and Sylvain Luc. All in all, this event is full of entertainment for music lovers and party-goers. It starts from 21 July and ends on 26 July.

Festival de Jazz en Touraine

Ten of the Best Summer Jazz Festivals In FranceThe final jazz festival on our list is the Festival de Jazz en Touraine, which is hosted just east of the Tours. The event delivers a mellow mix of jazz music and wine. World-renowned stars like Selmer 607 perform on the stages of this event. Not to mention, you will have the option of eating gourmet dishes in abundance. The jazz festival starts from 10 September and ends on 20 September.

Bottom Line

The bottom Line is all the above jazz festivals draw millions of tourists who come and enjoy the music and the summer weather of France. So, if you have any more jazz festival on your mind, please share with us by commenting below!