The festival, to be officially launched at the Jazz 105, is running from July 21 to July 24 under the theme “Celebrating our own Jazz”.
In an interview with Standard Life&Style, director of the winter festival, Josh Hozheri said, “This year’s festival is definitely unique in its own way and it will feature local artists only”.
“As a promoter, I think in the past we have been focusing more on bringing international artists to grace our events, but the idea is to expose our own local artists and give them the platform to showcase their talent.”
“This year we are celebrating our own jazz and the event would not have been better without our local artists, so it will be local artists’ affair.”
The major highlight of the festival is a commercial gig that is slated for City Sports Centre on Friday July 22 with the biggest surprise on the day being local dancehall artist Winky D, born Wallace Chirumiko, who is set to perform live with his band.
This gig will also be graced by legendary musician and elder, Oliver Mtukudzi as well as Sulumani Chimbetu and upcoming jazz star Munya Mataruse.
The opening at Jazz 105 on Thursday will witness four fashionable jazz outfits, Jazz Invitation, Summer Breeze, Mbare Trio and long-forgotten urban groover Diana Samkange getting the fans into some real soothing jazz mood.
Bob Nyabinde, popularly known among his fans as the Headmaster will perform at the same venue alongside the likes of Willom Tight, arguably one of the local pioneers of the genre we now know as urban grooves.
Bass guitarist and jazz sensation, Edith WeUtonga will also be part of this exciting line up performing alongside some of the best names and brands in jazz circles.
All the way from Bulawayo and the highly regarded musical elders in jazz circles, The Cool Crooners will brush shoulders with Harare’s best: Victor Kunonga, Claire Nyakujara and The Other Four, together with Selmor and Tendai Manatsa.
Newcomer to the festival Picky Kasamba, once Oliver Mtukudzi’s drummer, will make his debut appearance at this festival doing his own thing.
Jeyz Marabini, Jabavu Drive and the popular jazz outfit, Too Open and the Prince Edward Jazz band will make up the line-up of artists that will be performing on July 23, a day before the closing ceremony.
The ceremony will be held at Ochi City and Jazz 105, again with Summer Breeze, Jabavu Drive, Chimbetu, Dino Mudondo and Jah Prayzah wrapping up the festival.
“The line-up of artists is totally local and we are expecting people to come in and support this event. We are not going to end there but I can confirm that preparations are in place to have our first edition of the Summer International jazz Festival that will follow in September,” said Hozheri.
The festival has grown to become one of the most popular jazz showcases in the country.