Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Lotos Jazz Festival - Bielska Zadymka Jazzowa 2011

One of signs of renaissance of jazz in Poland is real flood of jazz festivals coming through our country. It's great to see how jazz lovers from all over Poland dedicate their hearts and resources to organize jazz life either in big cities or in small towns. Historically the most important of such enterprises in Poland was Jazz Jamboree in Warsaw. Unfortunately petty quarrels and personal wars waged by people who no longer are real jazzmen but only care about a dough efficiently destroyed the tradition of this fantastic event. Only a little less eminent is Jazz Nad Odra which luckily flourish up to this day attracting the best (especially young) Polish and foreign jazz musicians. However, surprisingly, the position of number one jazz festival of today goes to none of those two the oldest and most renown but to Bielska Zadymka (blizzard...) Jazzowa sponsored by Lotos oil company. It is just 12 years old but it begun to move up 8 years ago when Lotos became its strategic sponsor and when  Tomasz Stańko commited himself to help organizers with his artistic advice. 
Starting today it will last 5 days during which Bielsko Biała and its neighborhood will be visited by not only the best Polish jazz musicians like Piotr Wyleżoł Quartet and Tomek Grochot Quintet feat. Eddie Henderson but also famous guests from abroad like Avishai Cohen Trio, Joshua Redman Trio and Ahmad Jamal Quartet. A line up a bit too mainstream for my actual taste perhaps but even for such die hard free jazz lover as I am Ahmad Jamal concert seems obligatory. See you there then :-)

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