jazzahead! 2018 | Recap

By: FrederikeThu, 04/26/2018

Stingray DJAZZ had such a great weekend at jazzahead! 2018. We are beyond proud of this partnership. The live-streaming format worked perfectly, and the interviews with the showcasing artists were more than hilarious.


Here’s a short review of our jazzhead! experience:

Review Showcases

Horse Orchestra

This band is truly one-of-a-kind. The Copenhagen-based septet brings a whole different light to the music world. Before they had their showcase, a few members of Horse Orchestra represented the band in our ‘Jazz it Ahead’ format. They were very clear when they informed us not to clap in between the songs because they only had 30 minutes to perform. Most of the songs are composed by Jeppe Zeeberg, a Danish award-winning pianist, composer, and bandleader. While politely insisting us to shut up, the next song “Montag Ist Vielleicht Der Lustigste Tag” starts.


These guys are also from Denmark but create a whole different vibe. African beats & rhythms clang through jazzhead!’s stage “Schlachthof.” Percussion, drums, saxophone, guitar, and clarinet boost great songs one after the other. The African music is of high importance for The Kutimangoes’ repertoire: they can unite the body, the heart, the ears, and unite everyone that takes part. We want more,” something people scream after a Robbie Williams concert, was shouted to the boys as they were planning to leave the stage after their last song. But fortunately, the gave in and performed another fantastic, funky song.

Jazzmeia Horn

At our overseas night, we not only got blown away by Justin Kauflin’s amazing version of “Strawberry Fields,” but also by Jazzmeia Horn rocking the stage. Scatting, the highest pitch to the lowest tone - there wasn’t anything Jazzmeia couldn’t do. Every word and gesture express her total conviction, as she becomes alive at the moment. “I Love Myself” - a wise lesson she taught us during an interactive musical session with the audience. Something we should never forget!


The Stingray DJAZZ organized panel on The Future of Jazz is Video! was a fantastic opportunity to discuss the use of video with a wide range of artists, bookers, producers, labels, and venues. We had a great discussion, and throughout the festival, people kept coming back to us to discuss what had been said.

Who joined us?

Martijn Verlinden, A&R at Challenge Records and booking agent

Michael Zöllner, CEO at Klangmalerei.tv

Uli Beckerhoff, Artistic Director at jazzahead! and musician

Reza Ackbaraly, CEO, and co-founder at Qwest TV

Key takeaways

  • The future of jazz is with the musicians, but to get attention in the market, those musicians need video content.
  • Musicians, labels, and managers need to consider a video strategy: what does the artist need? Starting musicians need short videos, teasers of the music (music videos), and not necessarily in the highest broadcast quality.
  • The next step is recording live sets and showcasing what the artist/band is capable of.

What to do with that video?

  • Don’t make it available for free on social media but use snippets instead. The full show can be available on services such as Stingray DJAZZ.
  • Branding and finding a video style that complements the artistic direction of the music, much like the artwork was for a record. Such videos are easier to brand than pure audio.

Live music is the ultimate goal, but the video is the best way to reach the audience to motivate them to come to the actual gig. And also, to reach the programmers, EPKs are out of date, it is crucial to use proper videos. 


Through the new collaboration with jazzahead!, Stingray DJAZZ can broaden the festival’s international reach by distributing 37 showcase recordings. The showcase concerts were streamed live on the jazzahead! website and the Stingray DJAZZ Facebook page. Furthermore, all participating artists had the opportunity to broadcast their showcase on their social pages! The videos will form the basis for a new jazzahead! format on Stingray DJAZZ, which will be broadcast weekly on Stingray DJAZZ’s international television channels and worldwide VOD services.

Fun fact: Minutes before the first live-streaming of the showcases, the internet connection at the venue of Messe Bremen was down. Luckily everything was up to speed just in time!

Showcases on Stingray DJAZZ

Due to the success of the live stream and our great collaboration with jazzahead!, we’re happy to inform you that Stingray DJAZZ will broadcast the jazzahead! showcases! Keep an eye on our channel!