Jazz on the Green
Aberdeen Jazz Festival
by Anita Markoff
Sunday dawned on an unusual sight in Aberdeen; groups of people dressed in vibrant colours standing in clusters talking, laughing, drinking, and dancing. The jazz festival provided a splash of life on a typically grey day, kicking off to a good start with a myriad of free performances in various locations. This festival works hard to prove that jazz can be appreciated by anyone, and succeeds.
Down on the Green, the music veered into the territory of rock, with roaring guitars and hard drum beats creating a summer festival vibe. The open space outside the Trinity Centre was a family favourite, with young children joining swing society members from the university in a swirling dance to the time of contemporary saxophone solos. The band members playing the instruments did jazz justice by occasionally breaking away from the main melody and creating their own unique sound before returning to the loop. The open-air events created a welcoming atmosphere, and brightened the day even for the casual passerby. They also provided an opportunity for young creatives to get more involved with the arts scene of Aberdeen, either by being a volunteer or doing photography.
Down in Tunnels, the ultraviolet lighting and disco ball enhanced the mood as another mix of jazz bands played their hearts out in foot tapping, riotous sounds. There was even jazz available for those more interested in poetry, with DopeSickFly making an appearance in the fairy lit pavilion outside Rev de Cuba to chant some spoken word over their music. The jazz festival provided a way for people to come together, regardless of age or music taste, to celebrate a joyful and beautiful collection of sounds.