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CNSJF 2015 -The Calm Before The Storm

CNSJF 2015 -The Calm Before The Storm
(Media credit: Curaçao North Sea Jazz Festival)

WILLEMSTAD (CSN) -- Although the island of Curaçao is situated outside of the usual track tropical storms and hurricanes follow in the Caribbean, at the final weeks of august and first week of September the island puts everything in gear to receive a tropical storm of high category; not one of high winds and high sea waves but in this case the Curaçao community prepares for a storm of world class musical waves under the umbrella of the Curaçao North sea Jazz Festival (CNSJF).

For the sixth edition of the festival, the organizers, Fundashon Bon Intenshon and Mojo Events, the later responsible for the NSJF in the Netherlands, again have put together an impressive lineup of more or less 25 music ensembles and artists which one does experience easily during one weekend. The venue of festival this year will again be the Curaçao World Trade Center and adjacent beach areas near the world heritage city of Willemstad.

Headliners for the Friday evening concerts are without a doubt Enrique Iglesias and Lionel Richie. For the former Commodores front man and writer of so many classic hits as a solo artist, this will be his second appearance at the CNSJF. Lionel commented on stage between songs a few years back that he had no idea of what Curaçao would look like before arriving on the island, but was so impressed by the positive acceptance before and during his show that he promised on stage that he would return to the Sam Cooke stage in Curaçao. The wait was not long but his fans in Curaçao were counting the days for the official announcement that Lionel would be back. The long awaited Richie concert will be a fact on Friday, September 4.

For Iglesias this will be his first presentation at CNSJF, but he has been on the island before to record footage for a video clip of one of his so many hit songs. Just as is the case all over the Americas and other parts of the world, his megahit ‘Bailando’ was (and is still) aired on every radio station in Curaçao. His music and appeal will surely draw tens of thousands (of which many lovely ladies) to the main stage at the World Trade Center Curaçao.

To center all focus and attention of the Friday program to Lionel and Enrique will certainly not do justice to the quality of artists such as Cassandra Wilson, Gregory Porter, Emeli Sandé, Charles Bradley and The Isley Brothers. The Isley’s have been one of our personal favorite groups since the early seventies so it is with utmost satisfaction that we receive these legendary musicians in Curaçao. For us a dream come thru I’d say. Gregory Porter on the other had a memorable presentation with his group a few years back at the historic mansion of Brakkeput Mei Mei during the festival week. The news was very well received when the organizers announced that he would be on the cozy Celia Cruz stage in the exposition hall of WTC for this year’s festival.  Emeli Sandé is a household name in the US and especially her native Great Britain. In a short span of time she has performed on music stages such as Royal Albert Hall, iTunes Festival, Made In The Americas Festival and for very large audiences in mega sport stadiums as was the case for the musical shows related to the London 2012 Olympic Games. For the CNSJF 2016 she will perform on the Sir Duke Stage which a stone’s throw away from the white, sandy beaches of Parassasa.

The Saturday program is no less interesting as it features the multi Grammy awardees John Legend and Usher. The latter was contracted for the festival a few years back, but had to cancel his presentation for personal issues that needed his attention. So it is needless to say that his fans were more than satisfied when it was announced that Usher would fulfill his promise to perform at the CNSJF. John Legend was a huge success at the festival a few years back and his fans were knocking on every ‘door’ of the organizers to please bring back their favorite singer/songwriter. To write of Legend’s successful career at such a young age will take us very long so we prefer to invite you for his concert to enjoy all his hit songs. We although recommend to be early to catch a good view for the spaces in front of the Sam Cooke stage were packed during his first performance at the CNSJF.

Bettye Lavette, Randy Newman will perform on the Celia Cruz stage before and in between the John Legend and Usher concerts, while The Stanley Clarke Band, Wycliffe Jean and The Pointer Sisters will have every moving on their magical tunes at the Beach Area. We recommend you to have the program at hand to make a schedule to catch your favorites. From our experience, that is more easily said than done, for all the artists are world class and while walking from one stage to the other, you will also see what we the organizers calls Artist On the Move, lovely people from all parts of the world to chat with, and a variation of quality food. For more details of the program check www.curacaonorthseajazz.com - download the app, put on some comfortable shoes. We invite you to experience very memorable evenings.