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Anoushka Shankar 'Jazz a Juan' set was a festival highlight / Jazzwise

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After the terrible events on the Promenade des Anglais on the 14 July last year this year's Nice and Jazz à Juan jazz festivals were bound to be tinged with more than a little sadness. As a mark of respect Jazz à Juan started its festival one day late on the 15 July. Featuring a mix of jazz and popular music the festival attracted a large audience (despite the drop in tourism on the French Riviera since the terrorist attacks) selling over 90% of the available tickets. Security was high but the atmosphere was as brilliant as ever in this wonderful concert bowl on the beach in Juan-les-Pins (above).

I had not seen Anoushka Shankar before and her set was one of the highlights of the festival. Her brilliant mixing of Indian and jazz elements was a revelation and a really unique fusion of musical styles. Combining sitar, Hang drum and Shehnai was mesmerising and infectious. Hang drummer Manu Delago, who co-wrote Shankar's recent Land of Gold CD and from which they played tonight, was brilliant, capturing the essence of Shankar's heritage but adding another direction. The quartet was completed by Tom Farmer on bass and keyboards, who anchored the sound and drove it forward with great skill. The whole show, including very effective and dramatic lighting, was phenomenal.

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