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17 April, 2018

We took some time out of planning for the 2018 Festival to chat with our Volunteer Program Coordinator Liam to find out what role music plays in his life and what advice he would give to our sensational Volunteers.

1. What do you love about jazz and was there a particular moment that sparked your interest? 

I just love music – music is life! I think I became interested in jazz when I was about 22 and heard Billie Holiday for the first time. I remember thinking her voice was like warm milk for the ears. I was thrilled to see Madeleine Peyroux on the MIJF 2018 program; she is really channelling Lady Day’s spirit.

2. What have you learnt about jazz since working at MIJF?

I used to think of jazz as having quite a specific and well-defined sound, but working at MIJF has opened my eyes to the diversity of what can be called “jazz”. I now think of jazz not in terms of any particular sound, but rather as musical innovation, a genre with influences everywhere and something for everyone – and I think the 2018 program really reflects this.

3. Do you have any words of wisdom or advice for MIJF volunteer rookies? 
Be nice to your Volunteer Coordinator! Also: be flexible, patient, open-minded, and embrace the experience. Be ready to engage with others and talk about what you love. Passion is infectious and I’m hoping to see volunteers really harness their enthusiasm to encourage the appreciation and enjoyment of jazz music.

4. Who’s on your music shuffle at the moment – any great new discoveries?
I have to thank MIJF for introducing me to YEMEN BLUES! I can’t get enough of them and am really excited for their gig at 170 Russell on 6th June!


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