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Manchester Jazz festival 2024: So It Begins!

Get ready this coming week as Manchester Jazz Festival (MJF) is back in town! From May 17th to 26th, 2024, the city will be alive, once more, with the rhythm and groove of one of the most brilliant musical events in the city!

With a vast lineup featuring both established names and rising stars, this year's MJF is set to be an unforgettable celebration of jazz in all its glory.

The festivities kick off with a bang at the mjf @ First Street, a FREE opening weekender from May 17th to 19th, where you can expect a wonderful mix of homegrown talent and international acts across three event stages. Soulful melodies tare set to ooze into Manchester's fabric, there's something for everyone to enjoy, alongside family-friendly activities and delicious food and drink options.

Now, let's talk about the real stars of the show – the musicians! Here are five acts you absolutely can't miss at MJF 2024:


1. Secret Night Gang

These guys are at the very top of our list for good reason. Secret Night Gang, which is led by the incredible duo of Kemani Anderson and Callum Connell, this band delivers a fusion of jazz, R&B, gospel, and soul that transcends genres. With sold-out shows at iconic venues like Ronnie Scott’s and appearances at major festivals, Secret Night Gang is a must-see live act. You will be instantaneously hooked with their music, feel the soul and power that they hold...if you haven't already!

Friday 17th May - FREE - @ First Street (Main Stage)

8:30 pm - 9:45 pm


2. Nubiyan Twist

If you haven't heard the sweet sounds of Nubiyan Twist then where have you actually been? Since their inception at Leeds College of Music in 2011, this nine-piece powerhouse has become a force to be reckoned with in the UK jazz scene, known for their eclectic blend of styles and fantastic grooves. A genre-defying collective, blending virtuosic musicianship with an eclectic fusion of jazz, hip-hop, afrobeat, dancehall, soul, reggae, and dance music. With multiple acclaimed albums and inspiring live performances under their belt, witnessing Nubiyan Twist in action is an experience not to be missed.

Thursday 23 May

Time: 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

Price: £20.50 Full Price - Get them here!


3. Sarāb

A fusion of Arabic music, jazz, and rock, Sarāb enchants audiences with their beautiful blend of Eastern and European influences. Making their UK debut at MJF and led by the duo of Climène Zarkan and Baptiste Ferrandis, Sarāb's virtuosic performances promise to leave a lasting impression, showcasing the power of music to unite and inspire. Floored when I personally first heard their music and... wow. Something a bit different and fresh, an absolute must!

Saturday 25 May

Time: 6:00 pm - 7:20 pm

Price: £6 Full Price - Get tickets here!


4. Mr. Scruff x Nu Genea (DJ + Keys) + Me Gusta + Lena C: Keep It Unreal

Right, we all know who he is so join in a brilliant night as they take you on a journey through soul, jazz, disco, funk, and beyond. With Nu Genea bringing their awesome live project to the stage, alongside the funky sounds of Me Gusta Collective and the wild selections of Lena C, this is one party you won't want to miss. Expect a night filled with musical discovery, passion, and plenty of surprises. Mr. Scruff is set to take us into the night once more!

Friday 24 May

Time: 9:00 pm - 3:00 am

Price: £20 Advance - Get tickets here!


5. Courtney Pine

Why not celebrate the legendary Courtney Pine's 60th birthday with a special edition of his award-winning project, House of Legends. A trailblazer in the British jazz scene, Pine's groundbreaking contributions have redefined the genre and inspired countless artists. With a career spanning over three decades and numerous acclaimed albums to his name, Pine continues to push boundaries and captivate audiences with his unparalleled talent and passion for music.

If you want legendary then this is the show for you!

Sunday 26 May

Time: 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

Price: £28 Advance - Tickets are selling hot and fast, so get them here whilst you still can!


Those are our top fives you must see, but don't let it hold you back as theres way more to offer at this year's MJF. so please check it out!

Bonus - Shout out to three amazing women who I are also playing this years MJF: Don't miss BITEZ, the multi-award-winning poet and musician, on the main stage at 7:30 pm on the Friday 17th May - just before Secret Night Gang. With influences ranging from jazz to electronica, BITEZ's music delves into themes of love, technology, and the human experience. Also on first main stage you will have to catch the Amy Gadiaga Quartet at 5:30 pm on the Saturday 18th May, celebrating the rich traditions of jazz while infusing her own unique style. Winner of the Best Jazz Newcomer prize at last year’s Parliamentary Jazz Awards, Amy's performances are a testament to artistry and freedom. And finally, make sure to go and watch the wonderful Laura Misch's debut at MJF on Saturday 25th May at 7:30 pm. Tickets are still on sale and we highly recommend you check her out! A multi-disciplinary artist known for her outdoor composing experiments, Laura's music promises to take you on a journey of exploration and discovery. Get ready for an unforgettable evening of music, creativity, and soulful vibes.

We hope to see you there!

As always, see you at the front!



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