The Jazz FM Awards produced by Serious will return in 2016, taking place at the Bloomsbury Ballroom in London on Tuesday 26th April. One of the most prestigious events in the jazz calendar, the Awards shine a light on the broad range of talent that the worlds of jazz, blues and soul have to offer and will once again feature performances from a selection of acclaimed artists and groups.image001 (3)

Following on from the success of last year’s ceremony, which was presented by actor and comedian John “Fast Show” Thomson and saw performances from Hugh Masekela and Rebecca Ferguson in front of a star-studded audience of guests including Laura Mvula, Cerys Matthews, Denis Lawson and Jon Snow, the organisers have confirmed the first performer for this year’s event, the Grammy Award-winning vocalist and songwriter Gregory Porter. As well as showcasing new material, Porter will also be honoured with the Impact Award, presented to a jazz artist who’s made an outstanding impression on the wider global music scene.

Speaking about being presented with the award, Porter says:

“The UK audience was the first audience to propel me really all over the world. I launched myself from the experiences I was having in the UK. France got jealous and Germany was like ‘OK what’s all this commotion about?’ and so the energy that was created is what pushes me and so I’m delighted to have the UK be the first place that I exercise this new music. In a way, you’ve let me know who I am in the past, so I’m going to lay the music on you and I hope you’ll do it again.”

“Jazz FM got my name out there, and my sound, even to the point where Howard and Guy from Disclosure heard one of my songs on Jazz FM, and that’s how they decided to call me and do the song that we did, which ended up being a number one dance song around the world. So I have you to thank for many reasons, for advancing my jazz career and doing special things like that. I’m thankful for Jazz FM’s approach, and for embracing me and my sound.”

The Jazz FM Awards 2016 will present the following awards on the night:

  • Breakthrough Act
  • Instrumentalist of the Year
  • Album of the Year
  • Jazz Innovation of the Year
  • Live Experience of the Year
  • UK Jazz Act of the Year
  • International Jazz Artist of the Year
  • Blues Artist of the Year
  • Soul Artist of the Year
  • Vocalist of the Year
  • Jazz Impact Award – to be presented to Gregory Porter
  • Digital Initiative Award
  • Lifetime Achievement

The Digital Initiative Award, a new award for this year, has been created to recognise a musician who has harnessed the power of technology to engage with audiences and to take their music or performance to another dimension.

Full list of 2015 WINNERS:

Album of the Year (Public vote):

Dianne Reeves (“Beautiful Life”)

Live Experience of the Year:

Loose Tubes at Cheltenham Jazz Festival

UK Jazz Act of the Year:

GoGo Penguin

Breakthrough Act:

Bill Laurance

Instrumentalist of the Year:

Shabaka Hutchings

Vocalist of the Year:

WINNER: Zara McFarlane

Jazz Innovation of the Year:

Jason Moran

International Jazz Artist of the Year:

Gregory Porter

Blues Artist of the Year:

Dr John

Soul Artist of the Year:

Jarrod Lawson

PPL Lifetime Achievement:

Hugh Masekela

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