Tampere is preparing for an unforgettable All Saints weekend, when the annual Tampere Jazz Happening takes place 2–5 November 2023. Once again, the festival offers a wide variety of styles and shades of jazz on both sides of the Tullikamari square.
International stars take over Pakkahuone
As top names from the United States, three American jazz artists of the hip-hop generation perform at Pakkahuone in Tullikamari: saxophonist Marcus Strickland, vocalist José James and vibraphonist Joel Ross. This time, the farthermost artists arrive from Australia and South Africa. Brekky Boy from Sydney has recently been busy touring Europe and arrives now in Finland for the first time. As for the original piano virtuoso Nduduzo Makhathini, he made his international breakthrough last year with his album In the Spirit of NTU.
German jazz plays in many shades
This year’s country in the spotlight, Germany, is widely seen and heard in the programme. At the opening concert, two strong singers, Kira Hummen and Salomea, present themselves to the audience of Tampere. A quartet formed by Fabian Dudek, Felix Hauptmann, Ruth Goller and Leif Berger performs between the two of them. More experienced German artists, Daniel Erdmann Velvet Revolution and Julia Hülsmann Quartet, as well as the band Kuu! led by Finnish Kalle Kalima, who has however lived in Berlin for a long time, are heard in the main concerts of Pakkahuone. The German medley closes at the final concert of the festival at Telakka under the leadership of trombonist Janning Trumann.
The programme of Pakkahuone is complemented by the Ukrainian British Alina Bzhezhinska HipHarp Collective feat. Tony Kofi, British saxophonist Camilla George, Swedish Goran Kajfeš’ Subtropic Arkestra, and Verneri Pohjola’s release gig for his album Monkey Mind.
Finnish jazz tones and African-European merriment
Domestic jazz will mainly play at Telakka. Friday’s concert event is kicked off by Uusi Aika, led by Otto Eskelinen. Alongside the Laurell & Sun Dog duo founded by Valtteri Pöyhönen and Eeti Nieminen, Happening features a host of well-known guest artists. The evening closes with the jazz fusion band Peela. On Saturday, at Telakka, we can hear the unique and personal Silva Kallionpää Quartet, the delightfully rich sound world of Max Zenger Globus, and multi-instrumentalist Jimi Tenor and his band.
The late nights of Friday and Saturday end at Klubi, whose performers, Kutu, founded by the French violinist Théo Ceccaldi, and the eight-member London Afrobeat Collective are united not only by drawing their inspiration from the African musical traditions, but also by the social and feminist message of the songs.
Finnish Jazz Federation awards top performers and talents
Finland’s most prestigious recognition for jazz musicians, the Finnish Jazz Federation’s Yrjö Award, is presented for the tenth time in connection with the Tampere Jazz Happening. The Jazz Federation’s new annual Taimi Award is presented to a young musician who passionately develops their own musical expression. With the award, presented for the first time in 2023, the Jazz Federation wants to encourage young people to bravely search for and bring out their own voice.