XJAZZ! Festival will be indulging Berliners for another round of events throughout Kreuzberg. Flexing their insight into all-things jazzy, both new and old, XJAZZ has consistently managed to put together a comprehensive ensemble of bands and artists from across the world to inject some groove into the city’s streets. We take a look at some of the best acts at this year’s proceedings, featuring our favourite pick of jazz stars not to be missed.
For a festival that always heralds the springtime, it feels apt the opening act for this year’s proceedings will be Mr. Sunshine himself, Roy Ayers. A legend in the worlds of neo-soul, jazz, and R&B, this will be Roy Ayers’ final tour, and thus the last time the vanguard will play Berlin. Tickets for this show may be a bit hard to come by, but if luck manages to come your way, then there’s no better time to see this classic of the jazz and soul world.
- Huxley’s May 8
Angel Bat Dawid feat. Natalie Greffel
International Anthem’s very own innovator in the world of contemporary, experimental and heartfelt jazz music Angel Bat Dawid teams up with Berlin’s Natalie Greffel for a performance that highlights the two musicians’ incredible dexterous skills. The show will also feature Ukrainian musician Aleksander Poliyakov on the drums, and what is bound to be an energy packed fusion of clarinets, strings, and fast paced percussion that transcends borders, scales, and everything else.
- Emmauskirche May 12
There is no-one higher on the UK’s up-and-coming trajectory at the moment than pop and rap star Nadia Rose. With a range that covers all UK modern styles while managing to maintain her own, the powerful and enigmatic artist will bring some vocal flair and proper rhythms to this year’s festival. Chances to see a star like this on their ascendancy are few and far between, so don’t miss this one!
- Festsaal Kreuzberg May 12
Meditate to transcendent saxophone harmonies, uplifting spirits, and the deep poetic verses that British one-of-a-kind musician Alabaster dePlume has made his own. Known for his fluid and intimate live performances, in which he’s far from shy about directly engaging with the audience while taking on modern topics, Alabaster dePlume is an artist who was meant to be experienced live.
- Lido May 12
Henrik Schwarz & Bugge Wesseltoft
For those who need something a bit more on the electronic front, to tap your toes to and to pump you up for a good party session, look no further than Henrik Schwarz. The deep house, jazz, classical, superman of all things musical teams up once again with Norwegian classical jazz musician Bugge Wesseltoft to bridge the worlds of jazz and electronics for some upbeat, melodic sound fusions that will have you stroking your chin and tapping your feet at the same time.
- May 13, location tbc.
XJAZZ! Festival May 8-14, Kreuzberg, more info here.