The 33rd ZomerJazzFietsTour (SummerJazzCyclingTour, ZJFT) will take off on the last Saturday in August. Five different cycling routes in the beautiful Reitdiep valley, to the north-west of the city of Groningen, offer a pick of 29 concerts in medieval churches and farmers’ barns. The 2019 ZomerJazzFietsTour presents the latest trends in jazz and improvised music from The Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, England, Norway, Austria, Greece and the US. It’s a tried and tested concept to discover new jazz by bike.

The 2019 ZomerJazzFietsTour takes a selection of international top drummers to the Reitdiep valley. The legendary South-African percussion veteran Louis Moholo-Moholo will bring his band 5 BLOKES, featuring special guest Tobias Delius on tenor sax. The American drummer Gerry Hemingway will perform with the Trio Achim Kaufmann / Frank Gratkowski / Wilbert De Joode. Paal Nilssen-Love, from Norway, will present his trio FISH & STEEL. His fellow countryman, Gard Nilssen, can be heard with his successful outfit ACOUSTIC UNITY. And Berlin based percussionist Willi Kellers will perform with his remarkable duo with pianist Julie Sassoon.

Of course, we’ve also got some fantastic Dutch drummers. Living legend Han Bennink is visiting with clarinettist Joris Roelofs. Michael Vatcher opts for a duo with turntable man Joke Lanz from Berlin. Victor de Boo will be leading the Sean Bergin tribute band HI THERE, featuring the original horn section of Bergin's MOB.
The youngest cohort of drummers will also shine in CyclingTourCountry: Jamie Peet (duo with pianist Jasper van 't Hof), Onno Govaert (FULL SUN), Gerri Jäger (BUISONIC), Tristan Renfrow (NATIVE SPEAKER), Aleksandar Škorić (HALA) and George Hadow (KUHN FU).

International acts. We’ve booked a number of acts from outside The Netherlands, such as the virtuoso bass clarinet quartet WOODY BLACK 4 (Vienna), the unusual line-up of trumpet, ud and piano in the gorgeous TANIA GIANNOULI TRIO (Athens), the powerful brass duo of REUT REGEV / JON SASS (New York /Vienna) and BONE CRASHER, an homage to Johannes Bauer by the trombone trio of Jeb Bishop / Matthias Müller / Matthias Muche (Chicago/Berlin/Cologne). Some old friends will be visiting from Belgium: accordionist Tuur Florizoone with TRICYCLE and the always original piano trio DE BEREN GIEREN.

As an homage to Atelier Il Sole in Cantina, which had to close its doors after more than 20 years, we will present a number of bands that originated from this beautiful basement underneath the Groningen Haddingestraat. TRIO SANEM KALFA / MARTA WARELIS / ESAT EKINCIOGLU and KUHN FU will also be featured at the Prologue. The scene for this kick-off will be Vera, Oosterstraat 44, Groningen. Other outfits from the Atelier stable are bass clarinettist Ziv Taubenfeld with his quartet FULL SUN and the energetic quartet HALA featuring Atelier boss Leonardo Grimaudo, Helene Richter and Arno Bakker. Also from Groningen: the BERT VAN ERK ZJFT BAND and saxophonist Martin Tervoort’s VOORT4.

New Dutch bands. There are also new Dutch projects visiting the ZJFT. The Argentine reedist Natalio Sued and his trio NATIVE SPEAKER. BUISONIC, trombonist Joost Buis’s new band. The TryTone quartet DALGOO is brought back to life by reedists Tobias Klein and Lothar Ohlmeier. And HI THERE, THE MUSIC OF SEAN BERGIN, a tribute by Eric Boeren, Wolter Wierbos, Michael Moore and a rhythm section led by drummer Victor de Boo.
Then there’s ESTAFEST, featuring Mete Erker, Oene van Geel, Anton Goudsmit and Jeroen van Vliet in the frontline. Bassist Luc Ex takes on Peter Zegveld’s machines in L'ORCHESTRE MÉCANICIEN. And the current edition of the NATIONAAL JEUGD JAZZ ORKEST is being led by singer/pianist Ruben Hein. And our smallest location, the Harkema church, features a solo performance by Harald Austbø

At the end of a long day of SummerJazzCycling ABU will serve up African music from Mali and Senegal for the remaining dance crazy cyclists in the festival tent opposite the windmill in Garnwerd.
Before ABU starts, at 10 PM, we’ve asked DJ Shouting to spin some vinyl. DJ Shouting a.k.a. Koen Schouten is a former jazz journalist and radio maker, and nowadays a baritone saxophonist. As such he brought down the tent at the Garnwerd a couple of years ago with the funk band The Jig.

For the 33rd edition we’re very thankful to the many volunteers who make the ZomerJazzFietsTour possible. Please be kind to them on 31 August.


Of course we’re very interested in your experiences, remarks, criticism, compliments, anecdotes, suggestions and digital photos and films.
Please mail your reactions reacties@zjft.nl or post them on Facebook.