from being nobody to bringing the winner of a Grammy – xabiaaldia – The newspaper for xabieros with concerns

The Athletics track of the Graüll school was the location where the first editions of Xàbia Jazz were held, like this one in 2006.

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The Xàbia Jazz festival celebrates its 21st edition this 2022, an edition in which the City Council has achieved one of the milestones of the contest, bringing a world-class musician: Chucho Valdés, winner of several Grammys, the most prestigious awards in the world of the music.

With a budget of 80,000 euros, this edition of the Xàbia Jazz will be completely free, and that has not prevented the City Council from being able to afford that signing. The cache of the Cuban musician is 24,000 euros, the contract is published on the municipal website. The other two contracted groups have a cost of 12,854 euros (Monike Makon and the Big Band of the Taller de Musics de Catalunya) and Le Dancing Pepa Swing 5,868 euros. The latter figures are similar to those paid out last year with Sole Giménez, Seda Jazz and Juan Perro.

Behind Xàbia Jazz there is a lot of work, and behind the councilor on duty, there is always the Culture technician, Pepa Roig. To questions from XAD Roig recalled during the presentation of the program of this edition, the first moments of the festival. It was back in 2001, when Ana Vasbinder was Councilor for Culture. “She, together with Pepe Mayor, thought of organizing something powerful in the summer”. There were several options on the table, early music or jazz were the finalists. Roig recalled, “we decided to bet on jazz, it was the newest thing”.

1657647794 620 from being nobody to bringing the winner of a Grammy2004. Presentation of the Xàbia Jazz poster. The mayor, Juan Moragues, the mayor of Culture, Ana Vasbinder, the director of the Pepe Mayor Conservatory, together with the then regional secretary of Culture and Sports, David Serra, and the director of the Valencian Institute of Music, Inmaculada Tomás.

It was a tough few years to launch the event, but then the City Council had the support of the former Valencian Institute of Music dependent on the Ministry of Culture (financial support as well). The concerts were held on the Graüll athletics track, this editor remembers one with a big band, which was attended by the then European Commissioner, and summer resident in Xàbia, Benita Ferrero Waldmer. Those years the posh guests were frequent, everything is said.

In all these years, Xàbia Jazz has been consolidating itself, and successive governments (of different political colors) have maintained their commitment to the summer festival.

1657647794 268 from being nobody to bringing the winner of a Grammy2009. Mayor Eduardo Monfort together with the Councilor for Culture, Quica Gil, the director of the Valencian Institute of Music and the artistic director of the event.

In 2010, Xàbia Jazz separated from the Valencian Institute of Music and local politicians opted for an artistic director, the xabiero Kiko Berenguer, he has been one of the great promoters of the event together with the Culture team. Although in recent times, the festival has been organized directly by the Culture team.

1657647795 718 from being nobody to bringing the winner of a Grammy 2012: Kiko Berenguer together with the current mayor, José Chulvi, and the Councilor for Culture, Empar Bolufer. In the image appears Juanlu Cardona, who was president of Xàbia Histórica.

Nor was there “much Valencian Jazz”, but from the beginning, the technique recalled, musicians of this musical style were promoted, Kiko Berenguer himself but others have also repeated on several occasions such as Chano Dominguez, among others. “Xàbia Jazz has played a very important role in spreading” this musical style throughout the Community, stressed Pepa Roig.

But it has also been a springboard for many musicians “we brought Andrea Motis very young” (at the age of 18) and now, Pepa Roig acknowledged, she is a consolidated singer on the world jazz circuit. It was in 2012.

1657647795 14 from being nobody to bringing the winner of a Grammy2012. Performance by Andrea Motis at the Xàbia Jazz

«The negotiation with Chucho Valdés was easy»

Roig explained how the negotiation with the Cuban musician was. “They gave us a standard form with their conditions”, they reviewed them and some negotiation took place. “If we could not meet a request, we proposed another,” and finally it went ahead. In this sense, he thanked the predisposition of the artist and his representatives.

1657647795 982 from being nobody to bringing the winner of a Grammy2015. Quico Moragues’ debut as Councilor for Culture, with the mayor, José Chulvi and Kiko Berenguer at the presentation of that year’s edition

To highlight the presence of this star, the Councilor for Culture, Quico Moragues, detailed his summer tour: Marbella (Starlite festival), Madrid, France, Girona, Detroit, Los Angeles… Between Girona and Detroit the musician will stop at the 21 Xàbia Jazz.

The Xàbia Jazz will be from August 6 to 8, in the Plaza de la Constitución, with free admission.

Chucho Valdés, the great bet of Xàbia Jazz for 2022

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from being nobody to bringing the winner of a Grammy – xabiaaldia – The newspaper for xabieros with concerns