Last weekend, 16 through 19 May 2013, the traditional yearly jazz festival took place in Amersfoort, as I announced. Its thirty-fourth edition, to be precise. Chaired by the well-known Alexander Beets:
You can’t get to see everything as performances went at several locations in parallel. So here’s what I managed to see.
Thijs Borsten & The Flamenco Connection
I had a deliberate intention of attending this concert. I’ve always been interested in flamenco, also because it’s all around guitar music.
The venue was our Flehite city museum. It happened in two phases because the hall was very small, enough for just thirty people at most. I failed to catch the first wave and had to wait another hour before the second one.
But in the end it was decidedly worth it. For the first time in my life I witnessed a flamenco performance right before me.
The singer’s name is Erminia Fernández Córdoba. She was born in 1980 in Argentina (La Plata) and grew up in Spain (Alicante). Last 15 years she has been living in Holland and is nowadays a singer in genres jazz, pop, South-African and flamenco.
Her husband Arturo Ramón was born in 1981 in The Hague (Holland) from a Dutch father and a Spanish mother. He performs quite often and has recorded a number of CDs.
The pianist is a Dutch guy called Thijs Borsten, very bright and expressive. I liked his play a lot and will keep an eye on him for the future.
Here’s one of the videos I’ve taken at the concert:
Sorry for the shaky video. On the first day I didn’t have a tripod with me, which was a mistake. Also because I was sitting in the second row, I had to aim between people’s heads, arghhhh. However sound quality is okay.
All videos of that concert:
The Nordanians is a six-headed band with a funny sound and somewhat mechanical music.
They play a guitar, a violin, a cello, a tabla and so on. I’d hardly call this jazz, but it’s fun to see. Here’s one of their tracks:
There were a lot of kids on the festival. As they find nothing interesting in jazz, they were doing something like this.
She is a student at Tilburg Rock Academy, and a singer, songwriter and piano player. According to the website of the festival, the academy wanted to prove “their students are not just a bunch of rockers”, but they are capable of combining rock’n’roll with blues, jazz and even hip-hop.
As for me, she’s got a strong voice indeed. Here’s a video of one of her songs.
Ruud Jacobs Tribute Band
It’s a band formed on Ruud Jacobs' 75th birthday. Ruud plays contrabass, and I also recognised a couple of faces I know from a concert at De Observant — guitarist Martijn van Iterson (as indifferent as ever) and drummer Gijs Dijkhuizen:
International Jazz Summit
It’s a bunch of jazz celebrities who performed in the closing act of the festival.
Left to right, armed by saxes:
- Coh Mr. Saxman, a sax virtuoso from the sunny Thailand;
- A very famous saxophonist from South Africa whose name my memory failed to keep;
- Already known Ben van den Dungen;
- And, last but not least, the Director (also pictured on the very first photo), also known Alexander Beets.
The four were rocking the place to the top—the last show, you know. The Lieve Vrouwekerkhof was stuffed with cheering and dancing people. Here’s one of their videos called Watermelon Man:
Here are all their videos:
What I’ve described is about five percent of the entire festival’s programme, but I did my best. The good news is that I begin to recognise some names and faces. Hopefully next time I’ll make better educated choices.
And at last: