Tokyo Jazz Festival 2013

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Tokyo Jazz Festival 2013

Japan's biggest jazz event is also its least catholic. The three-day Tokyo Jazz Festival doesn't balk at booking crooners (Burt Bacharach last year, Tony Bennett this year), and each indisputably great musician on the lineup seems to be counterbalanced by a soporifically smooth operator (we're looking at you, Bob James and David Sanborn). After seeing de facto headliner Ornette Coleman pull out of last year's event at the last minute, the organisers are probably praying that the same thing doesn't happen with the 86-year-old Bennett or saxophonist Lee Konitz (85). Also look out for appearances by Chick Corea, Orquesta Buena Vista Social Club, Bobby McFerrin and the hugely gifted Ai Kuwabara. The main concerts are complemented by more intimate shows across the road at the Cotton Club, plus free gigs held in TIF's open-air plaza.