Montreux Jazz Festival releases free streams of performances by Nina Simone, Marvin Gaye and others

"During this unprecedented time, fans will have the chance to experience iconic performances"

Montreux Jazz Festival has announced the release of more than 50 performances from across its 54-year history, including sets by Nina Simone, Marvin Gaye, Johnny Cash and James Brown.

The news comes on the same day (March 26) that the Switzerland festival was due to unveil its lineup for the 54th festival. However, the growing coronavirus pandemic has forced organisers to postpone the event, with a rescheduled date to be communicated as soon as possible.

Marvin Gaye lost album My Last Chance
Marvin Gaye

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“During this unprecedented time, fans will have the chance to experience iconic performances by some of their favourite artists from their living rooms,” reads a press statement, “including rare concerts from ‘The Godfather of Soul’ James Brown, who played Montreux Jazz Festival in 1981 and the legendary Nina Simone in 1976. Fans will also be able to enjoy Johnny Cash’s 1994 Live at Montreux performance, as well as the ground-breaking hip hop group RUN DMC’s electrifying show in 2001.”

On top of the aforementioned artists fans will also be able to watch performances by Carlos Santana, Alanis Morissette, Nile Rogers & Chic, Simply Red, Phil Collins, Wu-Tang Clan, Korn, and The Raconteurs. Thirty-five performances are available now via Stingray Qello platform.

Montreux Jazz Festival is one of many organisations that is providing fans with entertainment during the COVID-19 outbreak. LA’s The Grammy Museum has started sharing previously unreleased Q&As and performances with musicians online for the first time, while the recently cancelled BFI Flare film festival has released its programme online.

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