Security was tight for a free outdoor bash at the Montreal Intl. Jazz Festival, a police reaction to riots after the Canadiens’ recent Stanley Cup hockey victory and during a local Caribbean-themed parade.
But the downtown concert — which featured rising British rap-jazz-funk outfit Galliano and attracted a crowd of 100,000-plus — went off without a hitch. It was Galliano’s first large-scale, North American appearance.
The 14th edition of Canada’s largest jazz festival ended Sunday.
Fest topper Alain Simard said this year’s edition topped last year’s attendance record of 1.3 million. Overall attendance was up 20%, ticket sales were up 30% and merchandise sales were up 40%.
Simard estimated the fest will gross more than $ C1.6 million, which will allow it to wipe out its accumulated deficit of $ C185,000. Sellout concerts featured the Neville Brothers, J.J. Cale, John Mayall and Grover Washington Jr. One of the hottest tickets was newcomer Petru Guelfucci, a Corsican singer who sold out four nights at a 1,300-seat venue.