Newport Jazz Festival

The Newport Jazz Festival is a jazz festival, which takes place every summer in Newport, Rhode Iceland. From the 1970s it was also additionally in New York ( among others under the name Kool Jazz Festival and JVC Jazz Festival).


The Newport Jazz Festival was founded in 1954 by George Wein to life and later organized along with his wife Joyce of wine and Charlie Bourgeois. It was initially usually takes three to four days in July.

Was financed by the festival in 1954 with $ 20,000 of the couple Elaine Lorillard ( 1914-2007 ) and Louis Lorillard, an entrepreneur from the tobacco industry. Both lived in Newport and contacted wine that had the Storyville Jazz Club in Boston to organize a jazz festival. They supported the festival afterwards financially until 1961. Until 1960 it was also guided by the non-profit organization Newport Jazz Festival Board, the Louis Lorillard board and the Newport Folk Festival also held in 1959. Starting in 1962, a company of George Wein took over the management until this she again gave a non-profit organization late 2000s, over which he presided. The New York branch of the festival, which later JVC Festival, however, was sold wine by George in 2007 and was discontinued a year later.

The first Newport Jazz Festival on July 17, 1954 attracted 11,000 jazz fans to Newport. It played, inter alia, Dizzy Gillespie, Gerry Mulligan, Eddie Condon and Oscar Peterson.

1957 there appeared also the trombonist Marshall Brown with a school band from Long Iceland on; he was then a member of the festival staff and was commissioned with G. wine to travel to Europe and find it there for members, an international youth band. This International Youth Band then stepped 1958-1960 to Newport. In the various editions of the Youth Band played, inter alia, Eddie Gomez, Dusko Goykovich, George Gruntz, Roger Guérin, Albert Mangelsdorff, Hans Salomon, Erich Kleinschuster, Jimmy Owens, Gábor Szabó and Jan Wroblewski.

Over time, all came to the festival jazz greats, including Louis Armstrong (1956, 1958, 1960-1963, 1970), Ella Fitzgerald (eg 1958), Duke Ellington (especially in 1956, a great success and revival of Ellington career ), John Coltrane, Miles Davis (who had a huge success with his solo on Round Midnight 1955), Cannonball Adderley (eg 1957, 1961) and Dave Brubeck (eg 1958, 1959, 1961 ) to to name a few. Most of the early performances have been broadcast by Voice of America on the radio.

Jazz on a Summer 's Day (1960 ) is a film about the festival of 1958 by Bert Stern, in which well-known greats like Louis Armstrong, Thelonious Monk, Chuck Berry, Mahalia Jackson, Chico Hamilton, Anita O'Day, Gerry Mulligan and a occurred. Also from the festival in 1960, there is a TV movie; also the film Salute to Louis Armstrong in 1970, recorded at the festival, a big birthday party for Armstrong.

In 1960, the festival in brawls between drunken, disaffected young people who had come in large numbers, but were no more tickets, and the police has been canceled ( Newport Riots ) and was on the edge. However, In 1962, George Wein continue the festival after it had temporarily ( and with less success) was led by Sid Bernstein, and the inhabitants of Newport voted in a referendum for a receipt, 1961 ( with 70 % for the Jazz Festival and 60% for the Folk Festival). 1969 Jazz and rock were presented together ( James Brown, BB King, John Mayall, Sly Stone ), with the Jazz in the minority was ( Sun Ra Sunny Murray ) and it in turn were riots. 1971 rioted rock fans who demanded free entry; Wine invited at this time a rock bands like Led Zeppelin, Jethro Tull and Blood, Sweat & Tears. In subsequent years, the festival was therefore moved to New York and returned only in 1981 back where it from then on two parallel festivals in New York and Newport gave ( the New Yorker Festival was called from 1972 to 1979 Newport Jazz Festival in New York and then by the sponsors Kool Jazz Festival (until 1985 ) and JVC Jazz Festival New York, 1984-2008 ).

After the turbulent period in the late 1960s and early 70s, the festival returned to his jazz roots. 2004, the 50th anniversary was celebrated with a US-wide tour and a CD release of the highlights of the festival, commented by George Wein.

Newport Rebels

The commercialization of the festival led in July 1960 disputes. Charles Mingus demanded a salary similar to the Swing veterans Benny Goodman, of which, however, still paid for his big band. This was not accepted by George Wein, and so called Mingus and Max Roach, an alternative counter-festival from that it to the festival in the nearby " Cliff Walk Manor Hotel " were holding parallel. There He met with the veterans Jo Jones, Roy Eldridge and Coleman Hawkins, but also to appearances by Jon Hendricks and the avant-garde Don Cherry and Ornette Coleman. Mingus, Kenny Dorham and Abbey Lincoln and others were afterwards called the " Newport Rebels ". ( On "Candid " appeared later an eponymous album with most of these musicians. ) However, the concerts were only about 200 people and were urged by the Newport riots in media interest in the background.

Recordings from the Newport Festival ( selection)

  • The International Youth Band: Newport 1958 ( Philips)
  • Dave Brubeck Newport 1958
  • Happy Birthday Newport 50 Swinging Years, 3 CD, Columbia Legacy 2004 ( compilation of highlights, the 1955 recording of Miles Davis Round midnight )