Gent Jazz announces the first names!

Organiser Greenhouse Talent unveiled the plans for Gent Jazz 2023 during a press conference today. The 22nd edition of the festival will take place between 5 and 15 July and, just like in previous years, will be held at the historical Bijlokesite. The organisation also announced the first twelve acts, including stars such as Norah Jones and Mavis Staples, upcoming talent Laufey, jazz sensation Gregory Porter and Ghent-based artists such as Lara Rosseel, Isolde Lasoen and Dishwasher_. 

Gent Jazz 2023 is set out to be a real party. Pascal Van De Velde (Greenhouse Talent) was very proud to provide more information and details about the 22nd edition of the beloved festival. The organiser announced a fantastic and diverse line-up, which promises a wonderful audience experience. The location remains to be the stunning Bijlokesite. Between 5 and 15 July, like previous years, this 'green lung’ will lend its singular character to Gent Jazz. Geert Riem (director of Muziekcentrum De Bijloke) is delighted with this ongoing collaboration. Next to the main stage, the Garden Stage, will return which will provide a welcoming space for emerging talent and experimental acts. Ghent’s Alderman for Culture, Sami Souguir, also expressed his confidence and excitement about Greenhouse Talent’s plans for the festival.

With twelve well-known names, the organisation has released the first part of the line-up. On 5 July, the festival opens with the warm, soul-jazz baritone voice of Gregory Porter, who is returning to the festival after four years. The following day, Snarky Puppy will set the tone and rhythm with their mix of instrumental jazz, rock, and funk. We’re warming up with Dishwasher_, the winner of 'Jong Jazztalent Gent’ 2022. On 7 July, celebrated blues guitarist Joe Bonamassa will provide a night to remember, right after legendary bassist Marcus Miller, who earned his stripes while playing with artists such as Miles Davis.

With two previous performances under her belt at Gent Jazz, in 2010 and 2017, Norah Jones returns to the festival for a third time on 8 July. The American with a characteristically smooth voice celebrated the twentieth birthday of her debut album "Come Away With Me” last year: another reason to see her perform. The eighty-three-year-old gospel, blues and civil rights icon Mavis Staples will present her most recent record, with The Band drummer Levon Helm. The album was hailed by critics as one of her very best. Additionally, we welcome Laufey, a twenty-three year old Icelandic multi-instrumentalist who can count none other than Chet Baker and Billie Eilish amongst her fans.

Headliner on 11 JulyZAZ! After three world tours and a period of reconnection, the French singer is back with "Isa”. This deeply personal album was created in isolation during the lockdown but her performances are primarily celebrations of togetherness. Ghent-based drummer and singer Isolde Lasoen completes the party with her latest record "Oh Dear”. 14 July will provide a genuine celebration of jazz with the Branford Marsalis Quartet. Since the very beginning, the quartet explores over thirty years of the uncompromising and daring full scope of jazz. The day is set to sway to the narrative sounds of "ARK," the ethnic acoustic jazz project of city composer Lara Rosseel.

In addition, Gent Jazz 2023 continues an important tradition with 'Jong Jazztalent Gent’. Throughout the competition, the festival invests in the development and stimulation of young jazz musicians from all over the country and offers the laureates financial support to realize a dream project.

This first announcement will soon be followed up by a lot of (inter)national established artists and new and upcoming (local) talent.