Celebrated international and Thai jazz and world music artists play to packed houses at some of the island’s leading 5-star resorts and beach clubs
(Koh Samui, Thailand – June 20, 2022) — The return to Koh Samui of its celebrated annual jazz festival following an 8-year hiatus was a declared resounding success by organizer SKÅL International Koh Samui and its partners, with all 6 venues sold-out to an appreciative audience of jazz fans earlier this month.
Top international jazz and world music performers from the Netherlands, USA and Thailand gathered on the island from June 7-12 as part of an Asia tour, to entertain packed houses at some of the island’s leading 5-star resorts and beach clubs.
The Samui weather played ball and sold-out shows included Thai and expatriate locals, as well as domestic and international tourists.
Headlining the week-long Samui Summer Jazz Festival 2022 was the New York Round Midnight Orchestra which kicked things off at the celebrated Woo Bar at the W Resort Koh Samui. The band was joined on stage by local Thai celebrity and festival artistic director Koh Mr. Saxman while W owner, Khun Sunny welcomed the performers and audience to the debut night of the festival. Proceeds from the night’s Lucky Draw were donated to the Sisters on Samui [SOS] Foundation, a partner of SKÅL International Koh Samui in presenting the festival.
Next up was one of the island’s newest resorts, U Samui where Paul van Kessel performed a dinner show of easy listening classics by the likes of Frank Sinatra in a chilled, beachfront setting.
A short walk down the beach saw the whole group of international artists joined by 10 local artists in a free ‘jam session’ at the popular beachside music venue Secret Garden where people danced until way after midnight to a sensational sound.
Cool new beach club SEEN saw the dynamic Dutch trumpeter Saskia Laroo and her Jazz band playing ‘Jazz Meets Hip Hop’ to a delighted crowd who danced against the spectacular palm-fringed backdrop of Chaweng Beach.
The stunning beachfront lawns of the Sala Chaweng were the scene of an outstanding session by award-winning sax supremo Ben van den Dungen and his quartet jazz featuring celebrated jazz vocalist American Deborah Carter. Well known for their swinging, danceable, blues style, the audience soaked up a special evening of feel-good sounds on a beautiful balmy Samui evening.
Meanwhile, the island’s celebrated Santiburi Resort overlooking Maenam Beach served up a sumptuous buffet-style dinner as tenor powerhouse Alexander Beets and his Quintet accompanied by Thailand’s own Koh Mr. Saxman, entertained guests to an outstanding show in one of the island’s most celebrated island paradises.
The final event was held at the stunning Melia Koh Samui on Choeng Mon Beach which saw over 200 guests enjoying the resort’s popular Sunday Buffet lunch to the sounds of jazz vocalist and double-bassist Natalie Schaap accompanied by Thailand’s Koh Mr. Saxman who together presented timeless jazz classics. At the grand finale, all artists gathered on stage to the delight of the crowd, with people dancing on the beach and around the pool to the fabulous jazz music.
Following the show, musicians and guests took off on the island’s sensational party cruiser ‘Nauti Beats’ for a fabulous sunset jazz cruise to official close the festival.
Commenting on the week’s events, Jane Soergel, Acting President of SKÅL Samui and Chairman of the Samui Summer Jazz Festival organising committee said, “We’re absolutely delighted that we did our musical guests proud here in Samui. It was a long shot after several challenging years but once things got underway, many people who enjoyed the first shows came back for more attending all shows in the end. All venues were ultimately sold out to a fantastic audience of local and international jazz enthusiasts, it was a great atmosphere for the island.”
Meanwhile, Alexander Beets, leader of the group of 20 musicians said he and his colleagues were … “absolutely delighted to be back in Samui playing their music in one of the world’s most beautiful settings.”
On the back of this year’s success, plans are already in the pipeline for a reprise next year.
Thanks went to the key sponsors without which it would not have been possible, including, Imagine Samui, Brother Thailand, Ferma Lights, Nauti Beat and ContineWM.
Summing up the six-night festival,Vincent Vichit-Vadakant said, “It was fantastic to see an international event of this caliber on Samui. The quality and variety of the music on offer was top class. Congratulation to the organizer SKAL International Koh Samui and its partners and sponsors on pulling something like this off just as things are starting to get back to normal..”