The Rifftides staff leaves tomorrow morning for Ystad on the southern Baltic coast of Sweden. The ancient seaside town will host the Ystad Jazz Festival in its fifth year. The festival will present such well known musicians as Joshua Redman, Charles Lloyd, Roy Hargrove, Jan Lundgren, Diane Schur, Jon Scofield and Abdullah Ibrahim, plus an extensive sampling of veteran and youthful European artists. In addition to posting from Ystad for Rifftides, I will write a piece for The Wall Street Journal about the state of jazz in Sweden as reflected at the festival.
Our son Paul is flying from Santa Barbara to meet me at the Copenhagen airport for the hour trip south to Ystad. I know from having covered the festival in 2012 that Ystad in summer is a popular tourist destination usually drenched in sunshine, a happy contrast to the gloomy place portrayed in the Wallender novels and television series. It is unlikely that he’ll be around, but we will keep an eye out for the inspector (pictured right). We may have to check out a dark tavern or two.
Blogging for the next several days will be as often as the festival schedule allows. To see the schedule, go here.