Safaricom has announced that American Alto-Saxophonist and six-time Grammy Award winner David Sanborn will be the headline artist at this year’s edition of the Safaricom International Jazz Festival, to be held on 26thFebruary at the Kasarani Training Grounds.
“We’re proud to announce another award-winning line–up for the 4th edition of the Safaricom International Jazz Festival, in line with the promise we made to deliver an event of international standard when we launched the festival in 2014,” said Safaricom CEO and Festival Founder Bob Collymore.
“David Sanborn is a prolific musician and performer with wide appeal, and he will be joined on stage by an equally talented line-up of musicians drawn from the UK, Europe, Middle East and Africa at the event, whose theme is: Music That Moves,” he added.
As has been tradition, all proceeds from the event will go towards supporting the Ghetto Classics, a non-profit programme that teaches music skills to youth from underprivileged backgrounds. The programme, which supports about 650 children from several low-income neighbourhoods in Nairobi, was created to be a source of refuge from the harsh, poverty-stricken environments synonymous with urban slums.
The Ghetto Classics meet for practice every week, undergoing instruction from volunteer tutors via face-to-face and Skype lessons during which they learn how to read and write music, and play different musical instruments.
Proceeds from the Festival since launch reached KES 19 million in 2016, and have over the years enabled a number of older Ghetto Classics members join university, while the younger ones and their families benefit from school fees, rent and other financial and non-financial assistance.
Sanborn has released 24 albums – eight of them Gold and one Platinum – in a career spanning over four decades. A performer with the uncanny ability to draw in even the harshest jazz critics, Sanborn was introduced to jazz at the age of three as part of his treatment therapy after contracting polio, and went on to release his first solo album Taking Off in 1975.
Known for his masterful blend of traditional jazz, instrumental pop and soulful R&B, he has played with legendary musicians such as the Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton, Luther Vandross, David Bowie, Paul Simon and Stevie Wonder.