Two years ago, Quincy Jones and French jazz impresario/television producer Reza Ackbaraly launched Qwest TV, the world’s first subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) platform dedicated to jazz and related music forms. Today (Dec. 17), in celebration of the platform’s second anniversary, its founders announced a distribution deal with Amazon Fire TV, an expansion into Japan, and a new education partnership program.
Now the approximately 37 million active users of Amazon Fire TV can watch all Qwest TV’s current video offerings—and Japanese viewers can watch those and more. Qwest TV Japan will feature 200 additional programs curated specifically for the local market by the SONG X JAZZ label’s Makoto Miyanogawa, plus playlists created by Japan’s major jazz clubs (including Blue Note Tokyo, Cotton Club, and Motion Blue) to reflect their performance schedules.
As for the partnership program, it gives students enrolled in select universities and conservatories worldwide complete access to Qwest TV for free. Initial partners include Princeton University, the University of the Arts, University of Central Oklahoma, Koninklijk Conservatorium Brussel, and University of Music and Performing Arts Graz, with additional schools to be announced in the coming months.
Since Qwest TV launched in December 2017, it has made more than 750 hours of music programs and 50 original premium programs available on desktop and laptop computers as well as iOS and Android mobile devices. Upcoming content will include the concert film De La Soul (Live in France); an Aretha Franklin tribute program featuring Antibalas, José James, Bettye LaVette, and more; and Robert Mugge’s films Gil Scott-Heron: Black Wax (1982) and The Gospel According to Al Green (1984). In addition, the platform has established content partnerships with various European jazz clubs, such as Moods Jazz Club in Zurich, and artist curators including Chick Corea, Ed Motta, Michael League, Youssou N’Dour, and Van Morrison.
Visit http://www.videos.qwest.tv/ for a complete list of Qwest TV content.