Subscribe now for free! JAZZed. CLICK HERE to signup now!

Montreal Jazz Festival/Festival International de Jazz de Montréal

Jazzed Magazine • News • June 30, 2016

FestivalInternationaldeJazzdeMontrealFrom June 29th through July 9th, the Montreal Jazz Festival/Festival International de Jazz de Montréal – presented by TD in collaboration with Rio Tinto — will boast an impressive 175 indoor concerts, and over 600 free outdoor concerts and events, welcoming a vast array of major musical names and acts.  For 11 days, Montreal will celebrate the crossroads of continents and musical genres in the Quartier des Spectacles, spinning the city into a whirlwind of memorable musical events presenting over 3000 artists from around the world.

Outdoor Program

With two-thirds of its programming presented free of charge, the Festival proudly maintains a formula that is the only one of its kind anywhere: inviting the world’s greatest musicians to a site renowned for its unparalleled accessibility and goodwill. Headlining the outdoor events are Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings, Jamie Cullum and West Trainz. In all, the Festival will present over 600 free concerts from all genres by both local acts, and by artists hailing from as far as Ethiopia and New Zealand.  

The Montreal Jazz Festival Announces its 2016 Awards

  • The Montreal Jazz Festival Spirit Award, which annually underlines the profound influence of a singer-songwriter on the world of popular music, is presented to the “Mozart of pop-rock,” Beach Boys founder Brian Wilson.
  • The Miles Davis Award, annually paying tribute to an internationally renowned jazz artist, is presented to one of the world’s greatest jazz pianists, Kenny Barron.
  • The Antonio Carlos Jobim Award, which annually recognizes an artist distinguished in the field of world music, honours Mexican singer, dancer and activistLila Downs.
  • The Bruce Lundvall Award, annually recognizing a person from the media or music industry who has made a significant contribution to the development of jazz, is presented to Justin Time founder and president Jim West.
  • The B.B. King Award, which annually recognizes the exceptional talent of an artist who has distinguished himself or herself on the blues scene, is presented to American singer and multi-instrumentalist, bluesman Taj Mahal.
  • The Ella Fitzgerald Award, which annually recognizes a jazz singer of outstanding talent, is presented to the incomparable Gregory Porter.
  • The Oscar Peterson Award, annually recognizing a major musician who has made a significant contribution to Canadian jazz, is presented to singer-songwriter, performer and guitarist Karen Young.

Montreal Jazz Festival 2016 Indoor Program

  • Opening Concert: Melody Gardot (opening act: Lisa Simone) – June 29 & 30, 7:30 p.m., Salle Wilfrid-Pelletier, PdA – With her magnificent voice and incredible charisma, Melody Gardot was an absolute revelation when she first appeared on the jazz scene in 2008.  The American singer-guitarist- pianist and songwriter returns to FIJM promoting a new album, Currency of Man.  Presented by CBC/Radio-Canada
  • Closing Concert: Preservation Hall Jazz BandJuly 9, 8 p.m., Théâtre Maisonneuve — A Preservation Hall Jazz Band concert is a trip to the very deepest roots of jazz.  Taking their name from the famed New Orleans venue where they formed, the Preservation Hall Jazz Band has become the “authorized” ambassador of jazz, having kept the tradition alive by taking the message to almost every country in the world.  Presented by CBC/Radio-Canada

Événements spéciaux TD series:  Salle Wilfrid-Pelletier, Place des Arts (7:30 p.m. unless noted)

  • July 2 & 3 – Rufus Wainwright presents his Prima Donna, a Symphonic Visual Concert and performs his greatest hits with piano and orchestra
  • July 4 – Exclusively at 8:30 p.m., a frenzied funk celebration with the legendaryKool & The Gang
  • July 5 & 6 – The grand dame of R&B, Ms. Lauryn Hill returns to the Festival after 14 years.
  • July 7 – To mark the 50th anniversary of the Beach Boys’ most legendary album,Brian Wilson, Al Jardine and Blondie Chaplin re-create the magical nights of the ’60s with the songs of Pet Sounds, performed onstage one final time
  • July The series concludes with Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds
  • Series presented in collaboration with ICI Musique,, La Presse+, Rouge FM, Boom FM, Virgin 96 and CHOM

Grands Concerts Rio Tinto series welcomes exceptional artists from all musical horizons :  Théâtre Maisonneuve, PdA (8 p.m.)

  • July 1 – The Blue Note 75 Band : Robert Glasper, Lionel Loueke, Ambrose Akinmusire, Marcus Strickland, Derrick Hodge and Kendrick Scott
  • July 2 – Welcoming back legendary bluesman Taj Mahal
  • July 3 – The golden girl of jazz: American singer Stacey Kent
  • July 4 – The daring Joe Jackson and his eclectic, delectable repertoire
  • July 6 – Legendary bassist Marcus Miller presents his new project, Afrodeezia
  • July 7 – The spectacular Volcan Trio starring Gonzalo Rubalcaba, Horacio “el Negro” Hernandez and Armando Gola (opening act, saxophonist Melissa Aldana)
  • July 8 – American Brandi Carlile brings her pop sounds to Montreal for the first time

Series presented in collaboration with ICI Musique,, 98,5 FM and CJAD 800 AM

Festival à la Maison symphonique Turkish Airlines series:  Maison symphonique de Montréal (7:30 p.m.)

  • June 30 – The illustrious Wynton Marsalis heads the equally famed Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra (concert presented by Radio-classique)
  • July 1Chick Corea, in a trio with the supremely gifted Christian McBride andBrian Blade
  • July 3 – The Montreal Jubilation Gospel Choir present their 10th album, I’ll Take You There
  • July 5 – An all-string double bill: astonishing Hawaiian ukulele player Jake Shimabukuro and Australian fingerpicking master Tommy Emmanuel
  • July 6 – Famed Canadian jazz vocalist Emilie-Claire Barlow goes symphonic
  • July 7 – The farewell concert of one of the elemental figures in this Festival’s history: the great Oliver Jones, in a double bill, opening with his trio, then performing with the Orchestre national de jazz de Montréal
  • July 9 – The 8th edition of our now-famous Battle of the Bands, with the Glenn Miller Orchestra facing off “against” the Cab Calloway Orchestra

Series presented in collaboration with The Montreal Gazette, CJAD 800 AM and Rouge FM

Nouveau monde series (spotlighting women in music): Théâtre du Nouveau Monde (8 p.m.)

  • June 30 to July 2 – Violinist Angèle Dubeau and her ensemble La Pietà perform from Ludovico Einaudi: portrait, Félix winner for Classical Album of the Year
  • July 6 to 8 – The Wainwright Sisters — Martha and Lucy—invite us on a trip through the nursery rhymes of their childhood with Songs in the Dark
  • July 9 –  Florence K brings the deeply human experience of her book Buena Vidato the stage

Series presented in collaboration with MusiMax and Virgin 96

  • Rythmes SiriusXM series:  Métropolis (8:30 p.m.)
  • July 1 – An electronica trio from Marseille, Chinese Man, with opener Poirier and his Migration Soundsytem
  • July 2 –  Dazzling Mexican songstress Lila Downs
  • July 3 – German artist Pantha Du Prince plunges into the psyche-minimalist ambience of The Triad
  • July 4 – The phenomonal trombonist-trumpeter Trombone Shorty, with Orleans Avenue
  • July 5 – He’s as wild as he is creative: extraordinary rapper Danny Brown
  • July 6 – Indie-folk western adventures from the magical Lord Huron, with brilliant opener Son Little
  • July 7 – An all-folk double bill with talented Swedish artist The Tallest Man on Earth and poignant Canadian artist Basia Bulat

Series presented in collaboration with MusiquePlus, CKOI 96,9, Virgin 96 and CHOM

Couleurs SAQ series:  Club Soda (6 p.m.)

  • June 30 – Sparkling Brazilian singer Céu and the fierce rhythms of her latest release, Tropix
  • July 1Susie Arioli presents her new album, Spring
  • July 2 – Ian Kelly brings the melodic folk of his storied album, Superfolk
  • July 3 – The daring Térez Montcalm takes on the repertoires of Prévert, Nougaro and Trenet
  • July 4  – The delightfully virtuosic songs of Gabriella
  • July 5 – The young Australian bassist everyone is talking about, Tal Wilkenfeld
  • July 6 – The dazzling Jay-Jay Johanson and his otherworldly repertoire
  • July 7 – One of the loveliest discoveries of the last edition of the Festival:
  • July 8 – The incomparable Betty Bonifassi, in a contemporary reading of the music of Alan Lomax
  • July 9 – Oklahoma singer-guitarist JD McPherson revives the glory days of rock’n’roll

Series presented in collaboration with Rouge FM, CJAD 800 AM and CIBL 101,5 Radio-Montréal

Les Nuits Heineken series: Club Soda (10 p.m.)

  • June 30 – The triumphant return of DJ Champion et ses G-Strings, with a new album, Best Seller!
  • July 1 – Hip-hop artist Terrace Martin’s Festival debut
  • July 2 – A night of divine madness with the founding members of The Sugarhill Gang and Grandmaster’s Furious Five, Melle Mel and Scorpio, launching an old school hip-hop bash
  • July 4 – Canadian blues-rockers the Paul DesLauriers Band launch their new album
  • July 5 – A brilliant jazz/electro-pop-rock/post-punk cellist Jeanne Added
  • July 6 – The first solo visit by one of the leading artists in contemporary R&B: Bilal
  • July 7 – Radio Radio and their album Light the Sky
  • July 8 – Swedish trio Peter, Bjorn and John, known for their smash hit Young Folks
  • July 9 – A musical nightcap with the silky harmonies of Boy & Bear (with opener Motel Raphaël)

Series presented in collaboration with CISM 89,3 FM and NIGHTLIFE.CA

Jazz Beat Hyatt Regency Montréal series:  High-caliber jazz at Ludger-Duvernay Theatre, Monument-National (8 p.m.)

  • June 30 – The series opens with famed saxophonist Chris Potter
  • July 1 – Fast-rising 12 year old phenomenon Joey Alexander with his trio
  • July 2 – Brilliant Israeli double bassist Avishai Cohen and his trio return, after 2015’s last minute cancellation
  • July 3 – Renowned Norwegian pianist Tord Gustavsen (accompanied by Simin Tander and Jarle Vespestad) presents his latest release, Hymns and Visions
  • July 4 – Renaud Garcia-Fons and Dorantes, bring their shared passion for flamenco to life
  • July 5 – Major grand saxophonist Steve Coleman and his project Five Elements.
  • July 6 – A special visit by a legendary jazz fusion group: Larry Coryell’s Eleventh House accompanied by Randy Brecker and Alphonse Mouzon
  • July 7 – Prolific virtuoso organist Joey DeFrancesco brings us his new album, Trip Mode
  • July 8 – The renowned Erik Truffaz Quartet presents his African-accented album:Doni Doni

Series presented in collaboration with

NEW Piano Solo series:  Le Balcon at (6 p.m.)

  • June 30 & July 1 – Montreal classical pianist Jean-Michel Blais presents his debut album, Voici II
  • July 2 & 3 – A cosmic, oneiric musical voyage under the Aurora Borealis with Roman Zavada
  • July 4 – As playful and fantastical as he is sensitive and intimate: Martin Lizotteplays Pianolitudes
  • July 5, 6 & 7 – Montreal pianist Alexandra Stréliski transports her audience to a dreamlike, cinematic world
  • July 8 & 9 – Pianist-composer Jade Berg presents an intimate, acoustic version of the debut album by Flying Hórses

NEW Invitation TD series (headlining acts invite guest artists to present a double bill tribute concept concert every evening): Le Gesù (6 p.m.)

  • June 30 to July 2 – Brilliant New Orleans trumpeter Christian Scott kicks off the series with songs from his fifth album, Christian aTunde Adjuah, before welcoming daring guitarist Charlie Hunter, and spellbinding singer Lizz Wright
  • July 3 to 5 – Renowned pianist Kenny Barron takes over with a first concert alongside scintillating Benin guitarist Lionel Loueke, followed by concerts with dazzling flautist Elena Pinderhughes, and closing his series with his trio
  • July 6 to 8 – The late, revered Chet Baker is the subject of the tribute concerts in this series. First, Stéphane Belmondo brings us his wonderful recent album Love for Chet; next, Montreal trumpeter and – for this occasion – singer Ron Di Laurooffers his homage; and finally, brilliant and innovative José James closes things out accompanied by Takuya Kuroda

Series presented in collaboration with The Montreal Gazette

Jazz dans la nuit series:  Le Gesù (10:30 p.m.)

  • June 30 – Virtuoso Israeli pianist Shai Maestro unveils a second album
  • July 1 – Incredible guitar virtuoso Charlie Hunter and his trio roll out a new album,Let the Bells Ring On
  • July 2 – Charismatic virtuoso saxophonist James Carter unleashes Django Unchained, a tribute to Django Reinhardt, accompanied by his Organ Trio
  • July 3 – Cory Henry presents The Revival, his recent album, grooving between vintage gospel and Stevie Wonder
  • 4 – A cosmic musical voyage with the apocalyptic space-funk of The Comet Is Coming
  • July 5 – Pianist Fred Hersch unveils the incredible range of his solo talent
  • July 6 – François Bourassa, Jean Beaudet and Marianne Trudel pay tribute to the man who helped launch the free jazz revolution in the early ’60s: Montreal pianist Paul Bley
  • July 7 – A jazz summit at the generational crossroads with the brilliant Vijay Iyerand the legendary Wadada Leo Smith
  • July 9 – The excellent Aaron Parks with his trio present a new album on ECM

Series presented in collaboration with Espace Musique and

TD Jazz d’ici La Presse+ series (hosting brilliant local talents): L’Astral (6 p.m.)

  • June 30 – The farewell concert by Festival emeritus, the “Roi du Drum,” Guy Nadon
  • 1Lorraine Desmarais with her Big Band and a rug-cutting project: Danses Danzas Dances
  • 2 – Welcome Misc, the new name of the Trio Jérôme Beaulieu
  • 3 – A Festival first: mother-daughter duo Karen Young and Coral Egan
  • 4  – Michel Donato plays godfather to the local scene, welcoming six young talents for a series of duets
  • 5 – The daring Frédéric Alarie meets Scott LaFaro’s double bass for a timeless musical encounter
  • 6 – Renowned harmonica wiz Guy Bélanger in acoustic mode
  • 7 – Queen of the Blues Dawn Tyler Watson delivers a high-wattage concert withBen Racine
  • July 8 – Jacques Kuba Séguin presents his Litania Projekt with Quatuor Bozzini
  • July 9 – 2014-2015 Jazz Radio Canada Discovery Emie R Roussel trio

Series presented in collaboration with ICI Musique

Le Club series: L’Astral (9 p.m.)

  • June 30 – Wild New York trio Moon Hooch
  • 1 – Japanese trumpeter Takuya Kuroda blends hip-hop, bop and soul
  • 2 – Franco-American singer Cyrille Aimée and her groovy new opus: Let’s Get Lost
  • 4 – A DJ-keyboardist at the crossroads of soul, R&B, hip-hop, jazz, funk and techno:Taylor McFerrin
  • 5 – Norwegian festival Punkt presents Nils Petter Molvær solo and the Eivind Aarset band with Jan Bang, followed by a live remix by DJs Erik Honoré andStian Balducci
  • 6 – Guy Bélanger in electric mode
  • 7 – Star guitarist Nir Felder presents his new album Golden Age
  • 8 – A luxurious musical voyage with NEeMA and her album Painting My Wall Gold
  • 9 – Young phenom Gabriel Garzón-Montano makes his first Festival visit

Series presented in collaboration with Stingray Musique and CIBL 101,5 Radio-Montréal


Concerts Intimes: Savoy du Métropolis (7 p.m.)

  • June 29 & 30 –  Raw emotion with Ontario artist Royal Wood
  • 1 & 2 – The authentic indie-folk of John Jacob Magistery debuts his new albumPhantom i
  • 3 & 5 – A luminous and ethereal pop universe that promises to be utterly spellbinding: Shyre
  • 6 & 7 – A double bill uniting Men I Trust and Ghostly Kisses, playing funky electronica and gauzy pop
  • 8 & 9 – Eight-headed beast Bellflower present their second album, The Season Spell, fusing wind instruments, soaring jazz and alt-folk

Series presented in collaboration with CISM 89,3 FM

A Musical Cruise, The Croisière Jazz: Le Bateau-Mouche, Old Port of Montreal (boards at 6:30 p.m., returns at 10 p.m.)

  • June 29 to July 1 — The composer, singer, guitarist and percussionist musically transports us to the sunny world of his native country, Brazil.  Reservations required: 514 849-9952, 1 800 361-9952 or
The Latest News and Gear in Your Inbox - Sign Up Today!