Festival year 2013
The 2013 edition of Pori Jazz took place in an unusually chilly weather. All but one of the main event dates were characterised by constant rainfall, and the average temperature for the week remained some ten degrees Celsius below the usual. The highlight of the festival was the July 20 concert at Kirjurinluoto starring the legendary US group Earth, Wind & Fire. The Kirjurinluoto Arena was dotted by a multicoloured ocean of people in raincoats, but the feeling at the venue seemed to grow only more intense due to the less-than-perfect weather conditions. The concert drew a crowd of 19,000 visitors, making it the most popular at the year’s festival.
In total, the Pori Jazz 2013 concerts attracted close to 50,000 visitors. This means that the event reached its goal in terms of number of visitors with the projected ticket sales of 48,000. Prior to the event, some representatives of the media were critical of the lineup not including a superstar act to draw in the big crowds but at the end of the day, the consistency and the high overall quality of the 2013 program proved to work well for the Pori Jazz loyal. The festival can justly be considered also an artistic success, judging by the positive feedback received by the billed artists across the media.
The festival preparations took an unfortunate turn during the fall of 2012 as the American trumpet player and Pori Jazz legend Ted Curson passed away at 77. Having performed at Pori Jazz each year prior to his death, Curson was the single most influential musician in the festival’s history. Two memorial concerts were organised at Pori jazz 2013.
The first artist announcement for 2013 was released well before Christmas, as the legendary Finnish singer Vesa-Matti Loiri & Loiri All Stars was announced as the headline act of the final concert at Pori Jazz 2013. In addition to Loiri and Earth, Wind & Fire, the 2013 lineup was brimming with legends such as Steve Winwood, Bonnie Raitt, Bobby Womack and Eric Burdon.
The full Pori Jazz lineup for the year was released on April 11. During the early summer, the McCoy Tyner Latin All Stars announced the cancellation of their entire European tour so the festival office had to work hard in order to replace the legendary jazz pianist. The Cookers from the US and Level 42 from the UK were soon announced as replacing Tyner in the lineup.
2013 marked the ninth edition of the Pori Jazz Kids event for children. During its five days of operation, the event attracted a crowd of 29,000 visitors. Pianist Artturi Rönkä was awarded as “Artist of the Year 2013” and the Pori Jazz poster was designed by freelance illustrator and graphic designer Satu Ketola.
The year’s festival also marked the first for Juha Miikkulainen, the new Managing Director of Pori Jazz since August 2012. Another major addition to the festival team was announced in May 2013 as Mikkomatti Aro, previously a Producer and a Programming Team member at the festival, was appointed as the new Artistic Director of Pori Jazz.