Lagos Jazz Series 2013 by Eniola Tito Abumere
Over the years I’ve come to realise that people have tastes for different things. Some people enjoy clubbing and the thrill of not knowing what a night of club-hopping might turn out. Some enjoy the vibrant fashion scene and look forward to events like Lagos fashion week or the numerous small fashion shows designers host in Lagos these days. A growing number appreciate stage and theatre productions like the ones often found at Terra Kulture or the ones organised in collaboration with The Lifehouse or The British Council. Without a doubt Lagos is fast becoming an electric social habitat regardless of what your type of ‘scene’ is. However, for me, I love concerts. I love concerts so much that I should probably invest in a few ‘I love New York’ style T-shirts that say ‘I love concerts’.
Musical concerts of all kinds take place in Lagos year round but one music festival I’ve come to look forward to every year is the Lagos Jazz Series. Put together by an amazing team led by business executive, Uti Bazino, the Lagos Jazz showcases indigenous and foreign jazz, soul, neo-soul, afro-pop and afrobeat artists who perform for 4 to 5 days to audiences with a taste for something a bit different and dare I say, something more sophisticated, than what we’re used to in Lagos.
From November 28th to December 1st, 2013, the Lagos Jazz series held its 4th edition at Muri Okunola park and the Federal Palace hotel with appearances by Mi-casa, Seun Kuti, Nduduzo Makathini, Showdem Camp, MI, Dede Mabiaku Ruby Gyang and the headlining act; Grammy-winning American Bass Guitarist, Marcus Miller.
Now, to be honest, the show had a couple of hiccups here and there. For example, American Soul songstress Jill Scott who was meant to be one of the headlining acts was a no-show on account of last minute scheduling conflicts and it caused a little stir up in the programme. Now, anyone that knows me knows that I hate it when plans get altered in midway. However the LJS team did a spectacular job of salvaging each situation as they redeemed themselves every night with amazing live performances.
Hosted by Beat FM’s Olisa Adibua, day one kicked off with a thrilling show from South Africa’s dynamic group, Mi Casa who from what I witnessed have quite a following in Nigeria. BlackMagic who recently released his album “Version 2.0” also performed new and old tunes on the night.
Day two was Afrobeat night, which also held at Muri Okunola Park, Victoria Island provided thought-provoking and spectacular performances from Afrobeat royalty, Dede Mabiaku and Seun Kuti.
By day three headlining act Marcus Miller gave a breath-taking performance as he left his Federal Palace hotel audience spellbound.
Finally day four had to be the hottest finale show for a festival in 2013. Hosted by Classic 97.3fm’s Schullz, the Party in the Park witnessed a breath-taking jazz performance from South Africa’s Nduduzo Makahathini and his band and afterwards, the crowd was off their mats and on their feet as they danced for hours to hits played by Dj Lamborghini and moving performances from Nosa, Show Dem Camp, MI, Waje, Seyi shay and Ruby Gyang.
SHOW DEM CAMP
With such a varied line up of local and international musicians, along with the undeniable touch of class and the praise worthy project management that characterised Lagos Jazz Series 2013, it looks like jazz has finally found its home in West Africa. At least this concert enthusiast certainly hopes so.
Eniola Abumere is a Wedding and Event Photographer.