Bass and lead guitars, drums, saxophones and deep soulful voices will be the order of the day when renowned jazz players meet and light up the stage at Lilongwe Golf Club today during the country’s first jazz festival.
One of the organisers of the event, Owen Mbilizi, said everything is set and patrons should expect a great time.
“Not only are we going to play great jazz music, but we will also share our expertise with the old and the young,” he said.
Mbilizi said as a way of cultivating interest in jazz as a genre and nurturing it, jazz artists will have sessions with children tomorrow.
“To make the programme more exciting for children, there will be performances by youngsters from Bambino Private School, Kamuzu Academy and Music Crossroads Academy. Apart from that, jazz players will spend time with the children that will turn up on this particular day, talking about the music and the mathematics of Jazz,” he said.
Locally, the limelight has always eluded Jazz despite being a rich genre with a number of Malawian artists boasting of skills in both vocals and instrumentation, among others.
Set to join Mbilizi during the festival is a group of artists with a strong interest in jazz, including Erik Paliani and saxophone player Dan Sibale. The other acts are Lulu, Waliko Makhala, TJ and Spare Fingers and Lusubilo Band from Karonga.
There are also a number of up-and-coming jazz musicians that will be accorded a platform to perform during the two-day event, organisers said.
“There are musicians like Theresa who is not known in the music circles and is set to perform with her band and a couple of others.
“The idea is to show their talent, improve their skills and interact with locally and globally recognised jazz performers,” said Mbilizi.
In an interview, Paliani said he was looking forward to the event adding that he is working on a jazz ensemble which people will like.
The inaugural festival is set to attract 15 acts from Blantyre, Lilongwe and Karonga.
Offering different genres of jazz, traditional, funk, smooth, ethno and afro, the bands and individual performers will focus on vocal, guitar, saxophone and piano maestros and solid bands. n