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Estoril & Allgarve Jazz Festival

Branford Marsalis

Jazz has a faithful friend and source of support in Portugal, as it does in most European countries. But Portugal’s jazz love and jazz lore run especially deep. As any jazz lover in Lisbon will tell you, the city sports the oldest jazz club in Europe, a comfortable and well lived-in and listened-in basement haven called Hot Clube in downtown Lisbon, founded by legendary jazz late promoter Luis Villas-Boas.

Festival-wise, the Estoril Jazz Festival, run since the early ’80s by veteran Duarte Mendonça, is one of the older festivals in this corner (and a literal corner, at that) of Europe. While another well-known Portuguese festival, Jazz em Agosto (“Jazz in August”) festival at the Gulbenkian Foundation in Lisbon, leans toward the experimental side of things, Estoril is proudly straight down the idiomatic middle, and this year’s roster featured Ron Carter, Bobby Hutcherson and Branford Marsalis.

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