Your guide to Jazzing up International Jazz Day!
Jazz songs are all around us even though we may not realize it as much. From the classics like “La vie en rose” by the legendary Louis Armstrong which has multiple covers taking over your Instagram reels to hearing “What a wonderful world” by him on Madagascar! Falling on the 30th of April, let’s see more about this day, revisit the history, some fun facts, and the classics!
What is International Jazz Day?
International jazz day by UNESCO or United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization was coined by UNESCO in November 2011 to be celebrated on 30th April every year. A festival for jazz in itself it aims to bring together people to share the joy of music and educate them about the history and significance it has in bringing people together. The highlight being the presence of legendary jazz pianist and composer Herbie Hancock’s presence in the celebration makes it even more binding!
While we may think jazz is “just another music genre”, it is important to note how jazz is actually more than that. International Jazz Day commemorates and celebrates bringing together people from all over the world through different walks of life and backgrounds. From teachers to students to musicians to just people like you and I that enjoy waltzing around the room with Frank Sinatra playing in the background, ah the evergreen songs!
The popularity of jazz, be it from the 1900’s or 2000’s is evergreen with more and more people loving this genre and using it in so many of their social media posts and also adding it to their playlist. So what is the history behind it? Let’s find out!
Herbie Hancock’s hand being the driving force behind declaring the 30th of April as International Jazz Day, this day is all credited to his efforts as a goodwill ambassador to UNESCO. It is seen as a means “to develop and increase intercultural exchanges and understanding between cultures for the purpose of mutual comprehension and tolerance” among people and different cultures.
The first ever International jazz day activities was held in Paris by Hancock himself and it consisted of both educational sessions and concerts as well. The second part of the same was held in New Orleans and the final part was held in the great apple or New York City,
- It is widely recognized
Appearing in both the calendars of the USA and UNESCO it is a widely accepted and celebrated day across the world! You don’t have to google “when is international jazz day celebrated?” anymore because the calendars have it.
- International Jazz Day has got over 2.49 million people tuning in for it!
In 2014, there was a whooping coverage of over two million people tuning in to the different celebrations of International Jazz Day from around the world. From live performances to educational sessions the media coverage was spectacular.
- There are thousands of programmes planned!
This festival is celebrated in all the 196 United Nations and UNESCO member countries in over seven different continents. The news reached as far as the Antarctic in 2014 as the caption and crew of the International Space Station released a special message on it!
Since we are figuring out ways to celebrate this day in our homes, there are just so many classics one can revisit! Here are a few of our favourites:
This evergreen song never stops us from getting back up on our feet or just relaxing with a cup of chai in our hand. With so many different versions out there, it’s hard to pick which one is our ultimate favorite.
A very common sight on every reel on Instagram, makes our hearts sing and sends us to that comfy spot that we all long for especially after a long day!
This song is our go to song when blues hit our happiness! A simple song to appreciate all that is around us that we often forget about. It’s about time we bring this back!
The world of jazz is vast from even Indian jazz songs like “Why don’t you like Jazz” by Aasha Sriram setting our playlist to a beautiful tune. International Jazz Day 2020 was celebrated online with as much spirit as it would’ve been in person!
This International Jazz day, remember to give our suggestions a listen and let us know what your day looks like and where you stand on regarding jazz music in the comments below!