Kaslo Jazz Etcetera Festival Books Big

Michael Franti & Spearhead rock in the thunderstorm to a sold out crowd at Kaslo Jazz Fest 2016. Photo by Louis Bockner Photography.

Kaslo Jazz Etc. Festival
Aug 4-6th
Kaslo, BC

Where the heck is Kaslo?

This was the question a writer colleague from the Vancouver Sun posed after seeing the line up for the Kaslo Jazz Etc. Festival. One of his favorite bands, The Preservation Hall Band were playing after having just played Coachella and Bonnaroo this year. He was stunned the New Orleans legends only Western Canadian date this year is in Kaslo.

Friday night of Kaslo Jazz Fest 2016. Photo by Louis Bockner Photography.
Friday night of Kaslo Jazz Fest 2016. Photo by Louis Bockner Photography.

Smaller festivals have made a big comeback in the past few years as  patrons tire of the mega festivals and crowds that go with them. Yearning for that experience that got them loving festival culture in the first place.

The Kaslo Jazz Fest, with a capacity of around 2000 attendees, has curated one of the better mid-size fest line ups in the country, outpacing many much larger festivals.

Charles Bradley and his Extraordinaires are not only one of the better stories in popular music of the past few years (check out the brilliant documentary Made in America to see why,) but he kills it live even after a bout with cancer last year. The Ottawa Citizen reviewed his set at the TD Ottawa Jazz Festival  this Summer saying “Charles Bradley blew the rain clouds away and likely left behind a few scorch marks on stage during a stirring soul revue.”

A Tribe Called Red were just long listed for the Polaris Prize for last years album We Are the Halluci Nation. Their inventive mix of Hip Hop, Electronic beats along with First Nations tribal beats are gaining them a global audience. Their set Friday night is set to be the dance party of the weekend. The track R.E.D. with Yasiin Bey, AKA Mos Def will give you an idea.

BadBadNotGood may very well be what’s next in the Jazz world. A Toronto band that made a name initially covering hip hop tunes went on to collaborate with Wu-Tang Clan’s Ghostface Killah for 2015’s Sour Soul. The band’s critically acclaimed album IV has also been nominated for this year’s Polaris Prize.

Add Los Lobos, The Sheepdogs, Fred Penner, Shane Koyczan just to name a few and you can see what all the buzz is about. Weekend and single day tickets are available online and according to Artistic Director Paul Hinrichs are selling ‘Very very well. Theres something for everyone so we attract a fun cross section of people.”

Kaslo Jazz also boasts a floating stage. The beach is the dance floor and you can swim backstage. Its a surreal experience when you add the stunning Mt Loki to the backdrop. You can see why some are meandering away from the bigger festivals and seeking out a different but no less amazing experience.


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