We have a great pleasure to announce the Jazz Appreciation Month in Montenegro this year! We have been devoted to this festival for the past ten years already, since 2010. This year, JAM 2019 has a motto “New Generation of Jazz“; we aim to give room to young authors, to allow them to express themselves – these are young talented local authors developing their projects and playing with the new ideas, whereas the esteemed international guests are going to be introduced to our audiences and they will have a chance to share their knowledge with Montenegrin colleagues.
During the first week of JAM 2019, we will have guests from the USA: San Diego State University Jazz Ensemble guided by the long-term director of Jazz studies at this university, a Grammy awarded trombonist, composer and director, professor Bill Yeager. The San Diego State University Jazz Ensemble is known as one of the finest student orchestras in the USA, with performances at numerous jazz festivals abroad, from Latin America to Europe. A special guest of the ensemble will be Kristin Korb, American singer and double bass player, composer and educator, for eight years now an expat in Denmark. Kristin was already once before our guest during JAM 2012, as part of the duet with Dena DeRose and we are so excited to be able to greet her again and see her perform with a big band orchestra. We are certain that the audiences in Podgorica, Cetinje, Bar, Niksic and Pljevlja will have the entirely unique experience during these performances. There is another special thing one must mention here: Pljevlja finally joins JAM celebrations. This beautiful northern town is going to have its first jazz concert event. Congratulations! While the US ensemble is here, we will take the opportunity and provide workshops and talks on academic jazz education in the USA, as well as performance in jazz ensembles. Young Montenegrin pianist Enes Tahirovic will also be performing with the SDSU Jazz Ensemble as a special guest at the festival opening night. This will be an important warm-up for Enes, since he is going to be giving a great contribution to our April jazz events to follow.
Local musicians have a prominent space in our program, featuring their great new ideas and magnificent performances: guitarist Filip Gavranovic, alias Pippo Corvino, is our dear and frequent guest on JAM; this year he is coming from Vienna, where he has been stationed ever since he completed his successful jazz studies at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Graz (KUG), and he is not alone! He has a self-taught Iranian guitarist, Mahan Mirarab joining him in Podgorica and Tivat. These two artists, both composers and guitar virtuosos, announce in this joint project an evening of chamber jazz music and refined tonal ambiance, providing a harmonious mixture of Eastern and Western music heritage.
It has been our great pleasure to support the ideas of our young singer and multimedia artist – Iva Kostic, and her “Georgiana” project. It contains dozen of jazz standards, well known to local audiences that went through the transformation and translation to Montenegrin in cooperation with other artists – Kaja Milacic for lyrics, and pianist Enes Tahirovic and drummer Slaven Ljujic for music. Both Enes and Slaven, same as Iva, got their music education abroad, studying at renown music academies in Graz and Boston. Iva dedicated the Georgiana project to her grandmother, and to all the other women who supported their families and preserved family traditions through time. We cannot wait to see the fruits of the project, now in its final phase, and hear numbers such as Fever, My Funny Valentine, Caravan, Quizas, Nature Boy, Georgia On My Mind, and others, in the version dreamed of by talented Montenegrin musicians. Through this project, Iva wants to make jazz closer to young Montenegrin audiences, and we are eager to help promote it on the International Jazz Day!
Enes Tahirovic will participate in yet another great JAM program this year! He will be the host facilitator of the Let’s JAM sessions, our new program cycle. Apart from Tahirovic, the band will feature saxophone player, Stefan Pavicevic, drummer Slaven Ljujic and our guest from Belgrade, bass player Branko Vucetin. This is a call for all the musicians and jazz music fans to join us in DODEST on April 27. The Facebook Jazz Art page is the way to register for this event.
When it comes to our movie section, “Jazz on Film” is devoted to jazz masters in features and documentaries: „Miles Ahead“ (feature on Miles Davis, by Don Cheadle), and „Born To Be Blue“ (feature on Chet Baker, directed by Robert Budreau) as well as a feature-long documentary „Chasing Trane“ (on John Coltrane, by John Scheinfeld). The latter is part of the US diplomatic program, American Film Showcase. There will be screenings in Podgorica and Tivat, thanks to the cooperation with American Corner Podgorica.
In total, during the month of April we will bring eighteen programs to six Montenegrin towns, with over 35 performers; needless to say that the festival offers free admission everywhere. The event is brought to you by Jazz Art Association, in cooperation with our esteemed loyal partners: Cultural Information Center “Budo Tomovic“, Capital City Podgorica, American Corner Podgorica, Porto Montenegro, Royal Theater Zetski Dom, Barski Ljetopis, Montenegro National Commission for UNESCO, Montenegrin Commercial Bank, joined this year by the San Diego State University, the Pljevlja Municipality and Niksic Theater. The general sponsor of JAM 2019 is the US Embassy to Podgorica, and we are very grateful for their support all these years. This year, the media sponsorship of the event was provided by FOS Media and Public Figure, Dan Daily and Radio D, TV Prva and Gracija magazine. A huge THANK YOU to everyone!
The jazz month is ahead of us. Join us, experience jazz! We are waiting for you!
JAM 2019 program is available here: JAM 2019 Events