Every year, I make a “grand plan” for JazzRochester's coverage of the Rochester International Jazz Festival. Most years, the amount of time I have to implement these plans falls short of my grand plan. This year has been no different. But as I noted last year, over the 12+ years that I’ve been doing JazzRochester, and covering the jazz festival in these pages, the success of the festival has changed my relationship with it. When I started this blog, there was not very much coverage of the Rochester jazz festival in the major media in Rochester and the traffic to JazzRochester would triple or better during the festival. Now, the media market is saturated with coverage and my little old JazzRochester blog is just another voice among the many news and other outlets that have much louder "voices." While I hope to gain new readers, the reduced traffic on the site itself (I'm focused elsewhere) is fine with me as it shows the success of the festival, and I hope that success may translate into an expanded audience for live jazz in and around during the other 356 days of the year. So, what can you expect from JazzRochester during the nine days of the RIJF? Here’s what I plan to do:
- Increasingly over the past years I have been focused on getting out and hearing a broad spectrum of music during the festival, and … frankly… enjoying myself. The lineup this year has the usual mix of those artists of whom I'm familiar with and those I have never heard. As with last year, there are no artists at the 2019 festival who are on my “bucket list.” But as I’ve said before, it just makes it likely that my “picks” will morph during the festival and that I’ll create opportunities to discover new sounds and artists in real time. As John Nugent has said over and over, “it’s not who you know, it’s who you don’t know” that matters. I plan on hearing as much of the latter as possible, so my “itinerary” will be in flux … on purpose.
- During the RIJF, I will use the other JazzRochester channels, especially Twitter (currently at over 11.7K followers), the JazzRochester Facebook Page and JazzRochester on Instagram, to connect festival goers with the artists as they communicate about the festival and their music, as well as sharing images from the RIJF. In addition, I have created a Twitter list of a number of the jazz artists at RIJF that I’ll be checking out for that purpose (let me know of any more artists you find on that platform). I’ll also use these channels to share the information about the festival being put out by RIJF and other ROC coverage of the festival in real time. Follow us if you’re on those platforms.
- I will try to do a "recap" post each day of what I ended up hearing the night before.
- I will continue to do the Wednesday listings post to let you know about other live jazz in and around Rochester.
- I'll try to stay healthy (see 2018's last XRIJF post to see why I'm adding this to the list....).
I hope that you will let people know about JazzRochester during the festival, including those you chat with in line, so more people who are discovering the wonderful music and community at this year's RIJF, and especially that played by the many local artists and bands and musicians who will be participating this year, are hip to where to find the most complete listings for live jazz during the rest of the year. Watch for a post about the local artists playing during RIJF that will publish later this week.
Hope to see you on Jazz Street! Say hi if you see me....