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John Kelman's Best Live Shows of 2011

John Kelman's Best Live Shows of 2011
John Kelman By

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2011 turned out to be the busiest festival year ever, with the first event taking place at the end of January and a trip to the northern-most civilized settlement in the world, Svalbard. The last trip, coming up, is a return to Tallinn, Estonia (after covering Jazzkaar in the spring) for the closing ceremonies of its selection as European Capital of Culture, 2011.

In between, along with local coverage in Ottawa, Canada and a return to the Montreal Jazz Festival, there were festivals in Germany, Portugal and Malaysia—plus, of course, plenty of time spent in Norway, this year covering Punkt in Kristiansand for the sixth straight year, Natt Jazz in Bergen for the fourth time, and a first encounter with the Oslo Jazz Festival. Hard as it is to choose the 25 top shows out of nearly 100 concerts attended, here they are, in chronological order:

1. April 20, 2011: Jan Bang / Erik Honoré / Eivind Aarset / Arve Henriksen Live Remix

Jazzkaar 2011, Tallinn, Estonia









2. April 29, 2011: Mats Eilertsen

Jazzahead 2011, Bremen, Germany









3. May 20-21, 2011: Dave Liebman Group

Café Paradiso, Ottawa, Canada









4. May 26, 2011: The Source

Natt Jazz, Bergen, Norway









5. May 26, 2011: Stian Westerhus / Sidsel Endresen

Natt Jazz, Bergen, Norway









6. May 28, 2011: Arve Henriksen Trio

Natt Jazz, Bergen, Norway









7. June 23, 2011: Robert Plant Band of Joy

TD Canada Trust Ottawa International Jazz Festival, Ottawa, Canada









8. June 25, 2011: Atomic

TD Canada Trust Ottawa International Jazz Festival, Ottawa, Canada









9. June 26, 2011: Kurt Elling

TD Canada Trust Ottawa International Jazz Festival, Ottawa, Canada









10. June 27, 2011: Brad Mehldau / Joshua Redman

TD Canada Trust Ottawa International Jazz Festival, Ottawa, Canada





11. June 28, 2011: Jean-Michel Pilc / François Moutin / Ari Hoenig
TD Canada Trust Ottawa International Jazz Festival, Ottawa, Canada









12. June 29, 2011: Rudresh Mahanthappa / Bunky Green Apex

Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, Montréal, Canada









13. June 29, 2011: Dave Holland Quintet

Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, Montréal, Canada









14. June 30, 2011: Anouar Brahem Thimar

Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, Montréal, Canada









15. July 1, 2011: Jaga Jazzist

Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, Montréal, Canada









16. July 2, 2011: Eivind Aarset Sonic Codex

Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, Montréal, Canada









17. August 16, 2011: Jon Balke Magnetic Book

Oslo Jazz Festival, Oslo, Norway









18. August 18, 2011: Trygve Seim Ensemble

Oslo Jazz Festival, Oslo, Norway









19. August 20, 2011: Brian Blade and the Fellowship Band

Oslo Jazz Festival, Oslo, Norway









20. September 2, 2011: Jan Bang / Erik Honoré / Sidsel Endresen—Dai Fujikara Remix

Punkt Festival, Kristiansand, Norway









21. September 2, 2011: David Sylvian Plight and Premonition

Punkt Festival, Kristiansand, Norway









22. September 3, 2011: Marilyn Mazur / Jan Bang / Per Jørgensen

Punkt Festival, Kristiansand, Norway









23. October 27, 2011: Empirical

Enjoy Jazz, Karlstorbahnhof Heidelberg, Germany









24. November 1, 2011: Pat Metheny Trio 00>11

Enjoy Jazz, Theatre im Pfalzbau, Ludwigshafen, Germany









25. April 20, 2011: Steven Wilson

Corona Theatre, Montréal, Canada





Photo Credits

Brian Blade: Hans Speekenbrink

Dave Liebman: John R. Fowler

Marilyn Mazur/Jan Bang/Per Jørgensen: Alf S. Solbakken

All Other Photos: John Kelman

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