Josh Grossman's blog

Well - that was fun!

After months of planning, hundreds of emails, countless phone calls, and more than 400 submissions, we announced the lineup for the 2011 TD Toronto Jazz Festival - our 25th edition - this past Tuesday, live-to-air on JAZZ.FM91. That seemed to go by rather quickly! A big thank you to everyone who was able to make it out to the event; to our colleagues in the media who have already done a great job in spreading the word about the festival; and to everyone who has sent me personal notes.

Here we go...

It's time for our big reveal! After months of planning, hundreds of emails, countless phone calls, and more than 400 submissions, we're ready to announce the lineup for the 2011 TD Toronto Jazz Festival - our 25th edition!

We're celebrating a few firsts this year; we're also paying tribute to the past 25 years with some outstanding return engagements, and over ten days presenting a wide range of music.

On being patient

Eight years ago, I decided to do something financially silly, but musically rewarding: I decided to bring Kurt Elling to Toronto to perform with my big band, the Toronto Jazz Orchestra. It was an exciting event for all involved, and I took it upon myself to be Kurt's chauffeur for the few days he was in town (who could resist?!). I remember clearly, as we stepped into the car at the airport - me feeling proud at having pulled this all off - that he asked me how long the band had been together.

Technology will save the world and/or we're all doomed

On my list of things to do this week was an audit of the Toronto Downtown Jazz website. I'm far from a web designer - I have the basic skills that allow me to design basic websites - so this was more about content and usability than anything else. One nice thing about thoroughly going through a website every once in a while is how it really makes me think about what should be on a particular page on a particular website. It's a good exercise that I sometimes feel is not done enough - there are a lot of bad websites out there (and who knows - my websites might be among them...).

Booking the festival

I thought I'd offer a quick update on the process of finalizing the lineup for the 2011 TD Toronto Jazz Festival. You won't get any names out of me yet (I ain't talkin', see...), but I can share some of the behind-the-scenes excitement, challenges, frustrations and exuberance.

Big ticket shows

Eating the arts for breakfast

Two quick items for this week...

A Special Project, the JUNOs and CKLN

A few quick items for this week, but before launching in, here are two random thoughts. First: hooray for sun! Second: ever have one of those days where you totally didn't realize when you left home that your shoes don't match your pants?

Here we go...

MEM3 at The Trane

But does it swing?

Well, folks, I'll admit it - you're not getting a great blog today. It's a gray Thursday, I'm having trouble completing sentences (tired), and I'm a bit sore (New Year's resolution...ball hockey...). So that title up there was really just a cheap way to get you to read on. But though I won't delve into anything too profound today, I have had an interesting ten days of music, so I thought I would give you a recap...

Monday, January 17 - Continuum's CD Release

New York Retrospective

First of all, if I haven't already said it, Happy New Year! I hope you all had a happy and restful holiday. I'm finally returning to a more normal schedule after about two months of traveling which took me to Montreal, Amsterdam, Rabbit Lake (north-west Saskatchewan, where I spent a very relaxing two weeks with my wife's family) and, most recently, New York. All that to say you should hopefully be hearing from me more regularly now that the new year has begun.

TDJ Special Projects

I'm pleased to report that TDJ Special Projects - the new initiative we launched in the fall, offering marketing support to successful applicants - has so far been a success! The inaugural deadline was November 30, and we had 18 submissions...from which we had to choose four. The submissions were all interesting and included first public performances, CD release events, performances with special guests, a jazz mass and a mini-festival (among others); and applicants included artists in every stage of development, from emerging to veteran.

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