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Festival International de Jazz de Montréal – 30th edition

fijm_logoThe 30th edition of the Festival International de Jazz de Montreal is upon us. Should be quite a hot scene in Montreal this year. The event runs July 1 to 12, 2009.

Of course we’re interested in who will be the 16th recipient of the Miles Davis Award, created for the festival’s 15th anniversary in 1994 to honor a great international jazz musician for the entire body of his or her work and for that musician’s influence in regenerating the jazz idiom.

The wonderful McCoy Tyner was last year’s recipient. He follows a prestigious list of those given the award: Mike Stern (2007), Brad Mehldau (2006), Dave Holland (2005), Keith Jarrett (2004), Joe Zawinul (2003), Chick Corea (2002), Michael Brecker (2001), Charlie Haden (2000), Cassandra Wilson (1999), John Scofield (1998), Herbie Hancock (1997), Wayne Shorter (1996), Pat Metheny (1995) and John McLaughlin (1994).

Looking at the program, I know it’s going to be a grand time. Definitely peruse the festival History, a very interesting look back at the amazing acts who performed. The gallery of festival posters from each of the past 30 years is a treat. The 1991 edition is a favorite, but for a Miles Davis fan 1988 is the best.

A drawing by Miles Davis became the visual theme for the ninth edition, a self-portrait that was published by the Festival and of which 150 signed serigraphs were made available to the public. If Miles’ electrifying performance at Place des Arts will be remembered forever by all who attended the legendary trumpeter’s concert, it was Pat Metheny who got the final word on the 1988 event, pronouncing it “the best jazz festival in the world.”

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