If you’re a regular of these pages, you’ve probably noticed the Qwest.tv banners headlining our content for a little over a month now. Maybe you’ve already clicked on one out of curiosity or maybe you avoid all web banners like the plague (that’s cool, we get it). In any case, we want to take a moment to tell you a little bit more about Qwest, not because they are a valued sponsor of the work we do here at Nextbop, but simply because we believe in what they’re trying to accomplish and we genuinely think that you, our readers, will love their one-of-a-kind on-demand jazz (and beyond) video streaming platform.
Qwest’s mission is simple: “To become the world’s largest legal online video catalog of jazz and affiliated music, featuring the highest possible audio and image quality, and to enhance and modernize the image of jazz by presenting talented musicians from around the world to a wider audience.” This is exactly why their project is so near and dear to our hearts and why we want to help them spread the word.
For a limited time only, use promo code 01NXTB to get 40% off a 1-year membership.
Click here to sign up.
Qwest was co-founded by none other than legendary producer Quincy Jones alongside Reza Ackbaraly, musical programmer for the Jazz à Vienne festival in France and the La Petite Halle concert hall in Paris (who also previously ran the New Jazz & World Music department at the French cable channel MEZZO). Both men are deeply passionate about jazz and they wear their love for the music proudly on their sleeve. What they have accomplished together with Qwest is exactly the kind of positive spotlight this music needs and a significant step in the right direction.
Let me just say this, when I logged onto the platform for the first time, my jaw just dropped. As a jazz fan, it was one of those rare “kid in a candy shop” moments I would never have thought possible. The names of Wayne Shorter, Duke Ellington, Herbie Hancock, Jason Moran, Elvin Jones, Robert Glasper, Ambrose Akinmusire, Bobby McFerrin, Dave Brubeck, and Thelonious Monk, all brightly gleamed at me from the homepage, each with its own uniquely inviting font, and that was just the tip of the iceberg as I would later discover.
The richness of Qwest’s catalog is extraordinary with over 500 videos, split up into live concerts, award-winning documentaries, and rare archive footage, all in HD or 4K and ad-free. You name it, they have it. We’ll forego all the jazz masters, but as it relates to our specific niche, Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah, Vijay Iyer, Chris Potter, Jacky Terrasson, Tigran Hamasyan, E.J. Strickland, Roy Hargrove, Gretchen Parlato, Butcher Brown, Terence Blanchard, Logan Richardson, Nate Smith, Chris Dave, Jaleel Shaw, and countless others, are all represented with flawless multi-camera cinematography and crystal clear sound.
Plus you’ll find a bunch of rare one-off concerts, including the Robert Glasper Experiment or the Roy Hargrove Quintet with special guest Yasiin Bey (aka Mos Def), Glasper’s trio featuring Bilal, the Tribute to Roy Ayers with (again) the Glasper Experiment, Pete Rock and Stefon Harris, or Yasiin Bey and Talib Kweli’s Black Star featuring the Hypnotic Brass Ensemble. Honestly, this is the stuff dreams are made of!
Also of particular interest, amidst Qwest’s sizable selection of documentaries, is a 10-part series entitled The Sound of New York by filmmaker Gloria Rebecchi, which tries to answer several simple but thought-provoking questions including: “Who is shaping the music of the Big Apple in the twenty-first century? How and why does this American megalopolis remain the capital of jazz to this day? How does the ‘standing city’ (to borrow from Louis-Ferdinand Céline) still influence the musicians who come there to live, play and create?” Each 30-minute segment features a different NYC resident, namely Greg Osby, Luis Perdomo and Mimi Jones, Matthew Stevens, Vicente Archer, Stefon Harris, Damion Reid, Mark Turner, Gerald Clayton, Theo Croker, and Bilal, providing a fascinating glimpse into their daily lives and perspective into their musical vision and aspirations. This one’s truly a must-watch for anyone following the current jazz scene.
I could go on for ages… Qwest just has so much to offer to all the jazz fans out there. So do yourself a favor and have a look for yourself. And for a limited time only, use promo code 01NXTB to get 40% off a 1-year membership. Click here to sign up. Trust us, you won’t regret it!
This post was sponsored by Qwest.tv.
Sébastien Hélary co-founded Nextbop in 2009 with the objective of introducing modern jazz music to a younger generation of fans. Aside from music, his other main obsession is food, particularly ramen and other Japanese delicacies.