In August 2013 Standard Bank Joy of Jazz marked 13 years of putting South Africa on the international jazz map. The Standard Bank Joy of Jazz is undoubtedly the premier event on Johannesburg's jazz calendar, and took place from 22 to 24 August at seven venues in the city's Newtown Precinct. The Dinaledi Stage,  the Mbira Stage and the Conga Stage was erected on Mary Fitzgerald Square, creating three  purpose-built venues to showcase this year's line-up. Other venues include the Market Theatre and Bassline, as well as restaurants Sophiatown and Nikki's Oasis as free venues. The annual jazz extravaganza attracted around 2 000 music lovers in its first year and has now grown to an audience of well over 20 000 people. Standard Bank Joy of Jazz presents an international line-up of top artists from around the world while continuing to discover and explore the heritage and riches of home-grown talent as well as that from the African Diaspora. Standard Bank Joy of Jazz has contributed to the cultural exchange between artists, and many international performers have met their local counterparts and subsequently collaborated on projects. Importantly, Standard Bank Joy of Jazz has also seen a phenomenal growth in the number of developing jazz artists, and the staging of the event in the Newtown Precinct has played an integral part in the regeneration of Jozi's inner city.

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Snapshot Joy of Jazz 2013

The Standard Bank Joy of Jazz once again brought the world stage to Newtown and this year's event, staged at nine different venues for the first time, featured a cross section of musical talent to appeal to all tastes. Trumpet maestro Terence Ballard, the incredible guitar mastery of Peter White, the harmonica dynamics of Adam Glasser, the stylishly textured playing of Eddie Daniels and the nostalgic drive of Dennis Edwards and The Temptations, were some of the highlights of a packed programme. One had to plan carefully and expect to queue because most of the venues were jam-packed with excited fans. I was tired at the end but musically enriched. - journalist Peter Feldman.



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    Caught the opening night of the Joy of Jazz festival last night... The Sax Summit girls, doing Kippie Mokoetse charts, did well but ran very long.. interminable rambling solos. Then came Eddie Palmieri, the reason I was there... and he delivered in spades.. unbelievable cuban percs players and a mindblowing trumpet player... I should have left after his set. Manu Katche fusion-lite quartet followed... very safe fuzak, but well-played and presented. Then the headliner, Earl Klugh... now the drums are way too loud, esp the bass drum, the Sanborn-clone is shrieking and Earl makes several basic mistakes on his very first song... I left in the third number.. but the rest of the crowd were getting what they came to see.. in-your-face mediocrity.

    Glenn Veale


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