The sweet summer sounds of jazz

Photo courtesy of Private Curve
Photo courtesy of Private Curve

The sweet summer sounds of jazz

by: Naheen Madarbakus-Ring | .
Groove Korea ( | .
published: May 05, 2015

Returning to its now familiar home of the Olympic Park grounds, the ninth annual Seoul Jazz Festival presents a celebration of music between May 23rd and May 25th.

Over 50 artists have been invited to perform at the much established jazz fest. Despite its name, performers have always branched out beyond the traditional jazz sounds, bringing an eclectic mix of acoustic, jazz funk, rock and pop to the four stages of the event.  

Festivities kick off on Saturday May 23rd with Dutch pop and jazz singer Caro Emerald alongside dance favourites Basement Jazz, who have a seven album backlog, including latest LP “Junto”, to present. The Robert Glasper Experiment bring their more traditional jazz and blues to the stage, with a sound that has been heavily inspired by church and gospel harmonies. Headliners Chick Corea and Herbie Hancock come together in an astonishing collaboration that will finish the opening day with a combination of their explosive pianist sounds.

Sunday will welcome a more soulful feel to the day with Brazilian musician Sergio Mendes bringing his Bossa Nova crossed with Jazz and Funk South American flavors to the stage. Wouter Hamel also returns to the Seoul Jazz event, performing from his third Dutch jazz offering, “Pompadour”. Lebanese-British singer-songwriter Mika brings his latest album, “The Origin Of Love”, and some exclusive tracks from the upcoming live album “No Place In Heaven” also expected.

The final day (which is also a public holiday Monday) brings a more eclectic offering of music with Swedish rock outfit The Cardigans appearing in the afternoon. Grammy Award winning jazz singer-songwriter Gregory Porter also performs before Cuban Arturo Sandoval closes the show with his unique trumpeting, pianist style.

Taking place on May’s three-day weekend later this month, the festival has been divided between four themed stages. The main stage at May Forest and Spring Garden are outdoor venues which should enhance some of the experimental sounds this year’s artists will perform with. The Sparkling Dome and Pink Avenue stages are indoor arenas which will undoubtedly benefit the more acoustic sounds.   

The Seoul Jazz Festival will not disappoint with an amazing line-up performing at this year’s event. Whether the ears prefer ballads, funk or rock, the array of artists performing promises a weekend of festivities for all. Get into the holiday weekend spirit, and head down to the Olympic grounds for some sweet summer sounds of jazz. 

More Info: The Seoul Jazz Festival takes places at Seoul’s Olympic Park grounds between Saturday 23rd and Monday 25th May. Tickets are priced between 123,000-287,000 won.

Website: Tickets are available from Interpark ( (link is external)).         

Address: 424 , Olympic-ro , Songpa-gu , Seoul

Contact Info: 02 563 0595 (Private Curve will also be selling tickets)

Tickets: 1-day: KRW137,000, 2-day: KRW190,000, 3-day: KRW287,000


Subway: Olympic Park station (Line 5, Exit 3)

Groove Korea website

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