Braving the New York winter chill for jazz

How refreshing, in more than one sense to be in a city where jazz is part of its pulse.

Over 100 performances in three days as the Winter Jazzfest celebrates the heart and soul of jazz and improvisation

Happily I found myself in New York for the last night of this friendly festival, where the ticket price includes all the music you can experience (though one little caveat is that some of the venues are small)

Both the Friday and Saturday nights are classified as marathons, where the music keeps on keepin on from around 6ish to the next morning. Venues range from more intimate spaces like the Zinc bar, through to Judson Church.

Expect to hear the cream of jazz with Oliver Lake, Myra Melford, Dave Murray, Mark Ribot, Ambrose Akinmusire, Theo Bleckmann and the list continues. Established artists with rising talents, a great reason to brave the New York chill – and it certainly is chilly in the streets.

For my visit I opted for the taster option, which was fairly random and based on geography and logistics and an aversion to queues. This was eclectic in nature and musical styles varied enormously from spoken word and improvisation to more upbeat tambourine beating styles to a mixture of soul, funk jazz through to latin and classical sounds.

For a much more educated and informed review of the music over the three days of the festival, read Zach Hindin and David Graham’s review from the Atlantic Dispatches from New York

For more information on the Festival visit

Editor of Jazz Australia, formerly contributor to Sydney Morning Herald and Women's Money MagazineMusic programmer and producer